When failure is never an option

By THE STAR

AN avid marketer, Terence Saw is looking forward to putting his wealth of knowledge and experience in the property development business to good use.

He has set up his own property consultancy firm Bridge Consultancy Sdn Bhd last year.

Having headed the sales and marketing team of four public-listed property groups in the last two decades, including MK Land Holdings Bhd and Sunway City Bhd, Saw has charted many successes in the course of his career.

In 2000, as the marketing head of one of the country’s largest property groups, he successfully turned around an almost abandoned development in Pulau Langkawi into a five-star resort.

Terence Saw explaining the details of a project he is working on

The project was voted the best resort development in 2003 by FIABCI Malaysia.

In 2004, he steered his team to generate property sales of RM1bil for another large property group – a record for the group that used to chart annual sales of less than RM400mil.

“As a passionate marketer, I hope to spend the rest of my working career doing what I love the most – marketing properties.

“Some time in the near future, I plan to write a book on ‘Marketing Properties’ and hopefully, it will be useful for those who wish to pursue the profession,” he said, adding that marketing was essential to determine the degree of success of a property project.

“Many people fail to understand the true meaning of marketing and there are companies, even the established ones, that tend to mix marketing, sales and public relations together,” he told StarBiz.

He said a project’s fate hinged on the basic strategies adopted by a company.

“During hard times like a recession, the first to fall are those who are product or sales-orientated, while strategies that are marketing-oriented can withstand the bad times and keep growing stronger.

“Some companies think that a huge amount of money is required for the success of a marketing campaign. This is not true at all.

“It all depends on the strategy and if all the requirements of the developer and client are addressed prior to the launch, even a small campaign can generate huge success,” Saw attested.

He said it was important to be focused.

“Having the foresight to analyse and plan all aspects of a marketing campaign will work wonders for a project instead of opting for a trial and hope strategy,” he added.

Saw did not venture straight into marketing upon his return from his studies in England in 1979.

The former St John’s Institution student and his brothers used to follow their contractor father to the construction sites during their school holidays.

“I have learnt a great deal and this has helped me tremendously with my current work.”

He later pursued his passion in marketing and earned his membership with the Chartered Institute of Marketing in Britain.

Since his first taste of property marketing when he joined the Pearlcom Group in 1989, Saw has been driven by his passion to excel in the profession.

While with the property group, he was given the opportunity to design a few marketing schemes and they turned out successful.

In 1990, he marketed a condominium project in Hong Kong and it was positively received.

“There are many areas or trades where I can put my skills as a marketer but I choose properties only because it is challenging and rewarding and most of all, I love doing it.

“I am proud to say that my success rate is high so far and I intend to keep it that way. Failure is never an option,” Saw said.

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