The week in review: LKY newsjacking | Malaysia Airlines CMO: Our brand is now as well known as Coke | TSLA wins Tiger Beer | Starcom triumphs at FOMA | Coke searches for global agency | TODAY misrepresents politician | Discovery Asia boss exits

Mumbrella Asia logoIn a week in which the founding father of Singapore, Lee Kuan Yew, passed away prompting the industry to down tools to pay tribute, the APAC boss of Discovery Networks left, Starcom won network of the year at Festival of Media Asia as Australia dominated again, TSLA won Tiger Beer and the head of marketing for Malaysia Airlines said that the brand’s high post-MH370 recall would rule out a name change.

Story of the week

LKY BreadTalkNewsjacking the death of Lee Kuan Yew. BreadTalk, a chain of bakeries, was not the only brand in Singapore to appear to use the death of the citystate’s founding father as a promotional tool. The company apologised after mourners reacted angrily to a promotion for BreadTalk’s commemorate buns. The promotion also used the black ribbon logo that emerged on the day of LKY’s death. BreadTalk is now giving out free pastries to those queueing to pay tribute.

LKY flagDigital marketing consultancy Janryk launched a social media campaign using the hashtag for tribute messages for Lee Kuan Yew that it plans to turn into commemorate flags to be positioned all over the island. A commenter on Mumbrella called the idea “another example of insensitive newsjacking” but the agency says its flags have been well received, and the idea will be covered in a programme on Channel NewsAsia.

Money lender text campaign Lee Kuan YEwAnd a money lender sent a text message campaign to alert people to a special offer on rates for “THIS WEEK ONLY” on the day of LKY’s death.

Meanwhile, the media and marketing industries downed tools to pay tribute to LKY.

Quotes of the week

Malaysia AirlinesThe head of marketing for Malaysia Airlines, Dean Dacko, told Mumbrella in an extensive interview that the reason why the airline would not be rebranded or the name changed in the wake of double disaster MH370 and MH17 was because of high brand recall. He said:

Name recognition is now in the range of Coke and Pepsi. That kind of awareness takes decades and billions of dollars in investment to build. To abandon that, from a commercial marketing perspective would be a tragically bad mistake to make.

The head of Google Singapore Joanna Flint could not hold back her feelings about how slow marketers in Asia have been to use mobile:

What’s interesting to me is that marketers still don’t seem to get it. It’s a massive, massive fail. Because no one else is taking the lead, no one else is following.

Nestle China head of digital and social marketing Hannelore Grams had an interesting point to make about awards at the Festival of Media Asia.

Mobile should still exist as its own category, as a specialism, as not all brands are using mobile yet. But I think the time has come for digital and social categories to go.

Cheryl Goh

Cheryl Goh, the marketing chief of GrabTaxi, hinted that speed will be key for the agency she works with as the cab-hailing app begins a search for an agency:

When I send pitch documents to an agency and people don’t respond quickly, I know they’re not right for us. “It’s very easy to tell who are the right partners for us.

A commenter on Mumbrella, Michael, was not a fan of the work of a Singapore agency to turn Lee Kuan Yew tribute messages in social media into commemorate flags:

Another example of insensitive “newsjacking”. A man’s death turned into a piss-poor internet meme. It’s not like people are short of places to express themselves on this issue.

Best work

Tokio Marine. A challenge for the viewer to make “today a day to remember”.

Dolmio Australia. Technology has hijacked family dinner time. The Pepper Hacker tries to reclaim it. A nice idea – and not scam, the agency’s creator Clemenger BBDO Sydney says, although it is a prototype.

Nissan. An online campaign in the form of a competition to find the best body design of a Nissan JUKE.

Canadian Centre for Gender & Sexual Diversity. The Gay Sweater. The idea is to end the misuse of the word ‘gay’.

Best-read story on Mumbrella

Straits Times publishes 24-page special morning edition in tribute to Lee Kuan Yew, Singapore news websites go ad-free

Good week for…

Screen Shot 2015-03-26 at 7.03.10 pmThe Secret Little Agency. The Singapore independent agency landed the global digital account for Tiger Beer after a behind closed doors pitch.

Starcom. The media agency won network of the year at Festival of Media Asia.

Dentsu, Wieden + Kennedy and Ogilvy. The agencies chosen to help Coke find a new platform to replace ‘Open Happiness’. The company said: “We have invited a selection of our key agencies from around the world to bring their best thinking to Coca-Cola in order to create the strongest work for our flagship brand.”

Bad week for…

Discovery Networks. News emerged that the APAC boss of Discovery Networks Arjan Hoekstra is leaving after a little over a year and a half.

Y&R. The agency’s Chinese operation lost president and chief creative officer Nils Andersson to rival TBWA.

TODAY. The Singapore newspaper apologised after misrepresenting the leader of opposition party who gave a speech about Lee Kuan Yew. The newspapers took parts of Low’s speech, and suggested that he was using his tribute in parliament to criticise Lee’s legacy. TODAY’s version of the speech in English does not match the video recording or transcript.

Mad Men. The highly regarded TV series about the advertising industry of yesterday year suffered a blow when lead actor Jon Hamm was treated for alcohol abuse.


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