Advertiser: PETRONAS Group Brand: PETRONAS Group Creative Agency: Credits:
PETRONAS’ commercials have been a staple during Merdeka for 20 years. Recently, other brands have emulated that strategy with their own emotional stories. How could we rise above them to lead in an uncharted media space for PETRONAS? Could we build brand preference?
Insight, Strategy and the Idea
INSIGHT: Malaysians are proud of their heritage and national pride is high during Merdeka & Malaysia Day. But, our general understanding of what makes us Malaysian can be trivial. Media agency recommended PETRONAS to unearth Malaysian stories & enrich others through sharing. Radio was identified as the key medium (94% Reach) able to connect with audiences across states, age groups and income levels. We partnered with 2 biggest radio stations with largest listenership: Hitz & Era FM. We included digital elements real-time response and share-ability. On-ground became a key element in bringing the campaign to life, while Digital/social would be used to increase engagement with millennials.
IDEA: We reached out to Malaysians to participate in the first ever Merdeka Reality Show in Real-Time : Merdeka Man
MECHANICS: To maximize real-time excitement, and cut through the clutter, we sent a Merdeka Man on a mission to hitchhike across the country and discover what Merdeka means to everyday Malaysians. He would rely on goodwill of Radio listeners to travel from one place to another. As he hitchhiked, he would document interesting snapshots and videos of what Merdeka means to Malaysians, thus inspiring others. His daily journey would be broadcasted on the radio stations, their social media assets and a campaign microsite. After his mission, Malaysian stories would be compiled in video form just in time for 31st August, to be shared digitally. We deployed radio, activation, digital and social to tell Merdeka Man’s tale, with each medium connecting with the other mediums, amplifying excitement. RADIO TO EXCITE: Radio was the primary medium to call for drivers willing to pick up Merdeka Man and help send him to the next town. Announcements, call ins, live reads and promo spots boosted reach and created a “larger than life” feel. ON GROUND FOR REALITY: To connect with Malaysians, we deployed an on ground team with camera crews and assistants supporting the Merdeka Man, and engaging with drivers. DIGITAL AND SOCIAL TO ENGAGE: Merdeka Man shouted out via radio station’s social assets to inform his whereabouts and mention his upcoming destinations. He recorded and shared his journey on radio and social media allowing followers to have real-time interaction. All the stories were curated into one single digital platform for Malaysians to find travelogue adventures of Merdeka Man.
Results and Effectiveness
From Kangar to JB, Kuching to KK, Merdeka Man travelled 14 states in 14 days. Reached 5.9 million Radio listeners Merdeka Man hitchhiked over 3,000 kilometers. Social media travelogue received 257 million impressions. RM15 million value in earned and owned media. Media ROI: 7.8x Brand preference rose 7% PETRONAS was once again the lead brand bringing Malaysians together.