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More Islamic and more global: JWT Muslimah report reveals trends for Southeast Asian Muslim women

JWTs Innovation Group has released a new report that takes a closer look at how marketers can reach Muslimahs.

J. Walter Thompson’s Innovation Group has released a new report that takes a closer look at the opportunities for marketers presented by young Muslim women in Southeast Asia to mark the launch of their Asian unit.

Titled ‘The New Muslimah: Southeast Asia Focus’, the report surveyed 1,000 women in August 2017, as well as conducted interviews with media influencers, researchers and original case studies to examine young Muslimah in Malaysia and Indonesia and how they are influencing industries like halal fashion, beauty, technology and food.

“Young Muslim women are showing a new set of aspirations and behaviors which represent both opportunities and challenges for brands,” said Chen May Yee, APAC director at The Innovation Group, noting that 240 million of SEA population are Muslim and young women in the region are launching businesses, sharing style on social media and travelling globally.

“Broadly speaking, they are more cosmopolitan as consumers than older generations of female Muslims and are also more religiously observant. These two trends—more Islamic and more global—have created a space of conflict, negotiation, adaptation and innovation that’s playing out across sectors.”

The report also found that nearly all women feel there are now more opportunities for women, but felt that younger women should have more freedoms than they do currently, as well as a stronger voice in their community and in government.

Younger women are more likely than older women to say a career is “very important” to them, the report said, with 52% of Indonesian women aged 18-39 saying a career is “very important” versus 33% of women 40 and older, while 58% of young Malaysian women said a career is “very important” versus 48% of older women.

Many women are also shopping online, as the report said that 31% of women in Indonesia and 24% in Malaysia shop online at least once a week, while 75% in Indonesia and 58% in Malaysia shop online at least once a month for things like clothing and beauty products, technology, travel and groceries.

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