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Lindsay Hong, Director of Business Development and Operations at Locaria - Shares Insights

Lindsay Hong, Director of Business Development and Operations at Locaria - Shares Insights

Our ‘Profile: A Day in the Life of’ feature takes a look at some of the global professionals working across performance marketing. It aims to shed light on the varying roles and companies across the flourishing industry. This week we head to London to meet the director of business development and operations at Locaria.


Lindsay Hong.

Job title and company:

Director of business development and operations, Locaria (the international division of global digital marketing agency, Forward3D).

In one sentence, how would you describe what the company does?

Forward3D and Locaria help some of the largest names in luxury, retail, fashion and travel to scale their online offerings internationally by running cross-market and multilingual digital marketing campaigns worldwide.

What are the company’s unique selling points?

Locaria helps brands expand through international campaigns and new market entry. That means creatively engaging consumers in the language, format and platform they prefer.

It’s easy to think of ‘the internet’ as a universal experience, but search engines and social media platforms can differ significantly by region. Our combination of international digital marketing expertise and performance linguistics is surprisingly rare.

Within the last six months/year, what stands out as the company’s major milestones?

This year Naver, South Korea’s dominant search engine and VK, the leading social media platform in Russia, have both recognised us as official partners. Our global team has delivered fantastic growth for our clients through these platforms, using an agile approach to account development.

Beginning with a simple market scoping test and a keen focus on ROI, we have expanded activity into the latest products available in these markets. It’s been great to watch our clients grow into new territories and be recognised for our expertise.

Duration in current role:

Seven months.

Where are you based?

I’m based in our headquarters in Camden, London. We also have offices in New York, Shanghai and Seoul.  

Previous performance marketing-related companies you have worked at:

Prior to joining Locaria, I had always worked brand-side. I worked for Burberry on a number of digital initiatives, such as Burberry Bespoke and the internal social enterprise platform, Burberry World. At the NET-A-PORTER Group, I helped establish several new international luxury offerings including the launch of its global beauty business and next day delivery service in Hong Kong. I also managed the growth plan for THE OUTNET in China.

What are your main job responsibilities?

I am responsible for ensuring that business operations run as efficiently as possible, whilst also supporting business development activities. ‘Business Development’ in Locaria usually refers to identifying new international opportunities for a client to test and grow.

This may mean running activity on a local search engine or social platform, or perhaps localising a website into a new language. It’s a great role because whenever we identify an opportunity, I also need to think about the implications and feasibility of delivering those solutions.

Take us through what you get up to on a typical working Monday:

The morning starts with checking emails before I reach the office in case of any urgent queries from Seoul or Shanghai. This may be followed up with a Skype call, where my Mandarin skills often come in handy. I then meet with the leadership team and my direct reports, to understand what we have planned for the week. In addition I may draw up the commercials for a new client, or review our hiring plan. We are growing fast, so are always looking for skilled linguists and marketeers to swell our ranks.

Then after grabbing lunch from the canteen, I may meet with our head of finance or the CEO to discuss new channels, new offices etc. or meet with potential clients to explain our approach to new market entry.

What top three websites can you be found browsing during your lunch hour?

  • - Very current reporting on what’s happening in the digital arena in Asia.
  • - China and Luxury are my background, so I love keeping up with how brands are trying to access this dynamic market.
  • The London property market is endlessly fascinating and I love all the data you can extract.

What are your top three tips for someone looking to get their hands on a job like yours?

  1. Take action, reflect on the outcome and iterate from there. The pace of online industries can mean there is no time to analyse absolutely everything before you take a shot at an opportunity.
  2. Don’t be afraid to innovate, be different. As long as you are clear on the outcome you are aiming for, you needn't constrain yourself to the oft-trodden path.
  3. Be honest and dependable. You can only achieve so much alone, so building trust with others is key.

Career-wise, where do you see yourself in three years’ time?

It’s impossible to know for sure as digital has presented me with opportunities I would have never imagined. However, I will always want to lead an international team, as the diversity that this brings provides both an interesting professional challenge and the most creative solutions.

Tell us one thing people at work don’t know about you?

Music was my first love, so I keep this up by playing bassoon in Kensington Philharmonic Orchestra. We rehearse weekly and perform three times a year, and while it can be tough to fit in, it’s a great way to refresh my brain after work.

Mark  Jones

Mark Jones

Editorial Executive at PerformanceIN. Mark reports performance marketing news and manages PI's network of guest contributors.

Originally from Plymouth, Mark studied in Reading and London, eventually earning his Master's in Digital Journalism- before making his return to the West Country to join the PI team in Bristol.

Read more from Mark

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