2020 has been a year of disruption and disconnect like none other. Indeed, with the only certainty in 2020 being uncertainty, there’s never been a more challenging year to be a marketer. Original plans for the year were thrown out as lockdowns throughout the region and world saw physical campaigns, events and activities moved online, postponed, or shelved indefinitely.
Of course, it’s very often in times of adversity that we see the greatest resilience — and despite these challenges, leading brands have stepped up this year, reimagining advertising to help inform, support and entertain their audiences during an objectively chaotic year. Whether tapping into Twitter’s conversational insights, creating a meaningful connection with their communities or using Twitter’s product suite to completely revamp their launch plan — marketers across Southeast Asia displayed exceptional creativity in using the platform to help their brand stay agile and relevant this year.
In recognition of this extraordinary work, and as we reflect on the toughest of years, Twitter is today introducing its #BestofTweets 2020 Southeast Asia Awards to celebrate and applaud the brands that broke through the chatter to create standout campaigns.
1. Best Campaign for Driving Positive Change in Society
Awarded to the brand that best used Twitter to effect positive societal change, McDonald’s Philippines (@McDo_PH) demonstrated this trait on numerous occasions throughout 2020. Today, we recognise one campaign in particular – National Heroes Day, which traditionally celebrates and commemorates the heroes who fought for the Philippines’ independence. McDonald’s Philippines, however, saw the opportunity to put the focus on a different kind of hero in 2020 – frontline workers. As a token of appreciation, the brand gifted frontliners a free meal via an in-app deal redemption. This simple but genuine gesture subsequently encouraged many others to come to Twitter to equally share stories of gratitude.
2. Best Brand Voice
Celebrating brands that consistently and strategically define and leverage their own voice, the award goes to Uber Eats Japan (@UberEats_JP). Tonight I’ll Be Eating is a year-long campaign, headed by a new pair of influencers each quarter to emphasise that no matter who you are, everyone can use Uber Eats to get their dinner fix.Though a global campaign, Uber Eats Japan expertly localised their rollout with humour and consistent brand voice throughout.
3. Best Virtual Event
With social distancing and travel restrictions here to stay, virtual events have now become the default mode of bringing people together. Following the cancellation of Cisco APAC’s (@ciscoapac) physical Cisco Live 2020 event due to be held in Melbourne, the brand demonstrated extreme agility by pivoting to a livestream, broadcast across the whole APJC region – including multiple country handles covering Korea, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and India simultaneously. The annual conference saw partners, customers and leading IT experts connect and learn about the latest technologies, discuss trends, and share ideas on how technology can help solve the world’s problems. Cisco also leveraged Twitter Takeover to run a Spotlight trend on @CiscoANZ on the day of the event – ensuring the event remained front and centre of tech conversations throughout the day, without missing a beat.
4. Best Use of Video
Online video is the only advertising format to have its 2020 growth estimate upgraded – and is expected to lead the way in 2021. Expertly using video in combination with Twitter’s custom solution, Like to Remind, Disney+ Hotstar Indonesia (@disneyplusID) wins Best Use of Video with their The Mandalorian Season 2 campaign. Leveraging sub-15 second videos packed with localised creatives, this video campaign garnered a whopping 9.1M views on Twitter, setting the campaign up for success in driving hype around the launch of #TheMandalorian2. Fans who tapped on Like to Remind further received Video Tweets with sneak previews ahead of the next episode to drive further excitement.
5. Most Tweeted about Brand
While 2020 has been a challenging year for many, there’s no denying that the pandemic drove a surge in online shopping, and subsequent shopping conversations on Twitter. Shopee takes the crown for Most Tweeted about Brand. With many successful campaigns across several Southeast Asian markets (including @ShopeeSG, @ShopeeMY, @ShopeeID, @ShopeeTH, and @ShopeePH ), Shopee leveraged the biggest shopping days in the calendar to keep its brand top-of-mind.
6. Best “Launch” on Twitter
2020 was a tough year to launch anything new – but Pringles Japan (@PringlesJapanCP) with the launch of their new Pringles flavours demonstrated that even against the backdrop of a pandemic, it can be done with flair.
In a three-phased launch, Pringles Japan first teased fans by holding giveaway contests on Twitter, posting Tweets with creatives to build hype and pique interest among users. This was followed by the reveal, with Pringles unveiling their new brand ambassador – Fuwa-Chan, a popular Japanese personality – in a humorous video that achieved a high view-through rate. Finally, reinforcing their brand messaging, the campaign kept the momentum going post-launch by having Fuwa-Chan take over the account to host ‘consultations’ where she listened to fans’ troubles, driving even greater brand engagement on Twitter.
7. Best Connection to Culture
This award looks at the most effective latch on to a cultural moment – and Netflix Indonesia (@NetflixID) knows this best, using K-Pop as their cultural connection to the masses. Indonesia is in the top three countries in the world for conversations around #KpopTwitter – so in anticipation of the launch of K-pop group Blackpink’s new documentary Light Up The Sky, Netflix Indonesia connected with the local fandom community (or Blinks) and the wider #KpopTwitter community to supercharge conversations. Netflix Indonesia additionally used a custom branded emoji, taking Twitter Indonesia by storm.
8. Best #OnlyonTwitter
Finally, the best #OnlyonTwitter Southeast Asia Award goes to Spotify (@SpotifyKDaebak), for their K-Pop Multi Playlist campaign. In a bid to get K-Pop fans to explore new music through Spotify’s curated K-Pop playlists, Spotify partnered with Twitter to create the K-Pop Multi Playlist campaign – a series of quizzes to match each fan’s personality to a curated Spotify playlist.
Using Twitter’s Post-Click Experience, a microsite that acts as an extension of the Twitter platform, fans answered five simple questions to receive playlist recommendations that they could share with their friends. Many fans also took to Twitter to share their results, helping Spotify further stand out from the music clutter and build its credibility as a source for discovering new K-pop music.
“In this time of upheaval, there was no rule book to go by, or tried and tested method to keep audiences engaged. Instead, brands and marketers have had to roll with the punches and learn as the year evolved. This meant really listening to and connecting with their communities, before reaching out in an authentic and genuine way. We’ve been humbled and inspired by how brands throughout the region have leveraged Twitter to tap into conversations and cultural moments. And as we look to the New Year, it’s clear that community building will only increase in importance,” said Arvinder Gujral, Managing Director, Southeast Asia, at Twitter.