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CG. Southeast Asia PR Campaign of the Year

Campaign Title

SingTel Hawker Heroes

Singapore Telecommunications

Ogilvy & Mather Singapore Pte Ltd

Few consumers love their mobile phone carrier and SingTel brought with it the baggage of being an ‘incumbent’ government corporation perceived as big, cold and bureaucratic with a rising tide of consumer complaints on social media.
In 2013, SingTel desperately needed some positive community engagement, made more urgent when its brand consideration slumped to a new low of 23 per cent - well behind its key competitor. SingTel had officially lost the hearts and minds of consumers. A radical response was required from SingTel to win back the affection of everyday Singaporeans. The objective was to help restore SingTel’s brand consideration scores to 35 per cent (2011 level). 

The agency created a publicity campaign to position SingTel as a champion of our local food culture, celebrating hawker chefs as everyday heroes, while leveraging topical news interest and national pride for Singapore’s at-risk hawker heritage. To further this cultural tension, SingTel invited seven of Singapore’s prominent food bloggers, to issue a joint challenge to Chef Gordon Ramsay. The intention was to organise a competition between one of the world’s most provocative Michelin-starred chefs and Singapore hawkers and draw the eyes of the world on this issue. The campaign also showcased SingTel’s multimedia capabilities, a communications strategy that featured their dynamic multimedia content across earned media as well as SingTel-owned media channels for ongoing engagement, with efficient and maximum reach to Singaporeans.

SingTel’s brand consideration increased from 23 per cent to 34 per cent establishing a clear lead over its rival by 10 points, and returning SingTel back to its historical highs. This increase was sustained until the present day, over 6 months after the event.

Certificate of Excellence
Campaign Title



GO Communications

The brief was to educate and advise the target audience that the Thistle Hotel resort in Port Dickson was changing its focus to become a family hotel and explain that the hotel would undergo a multimillion-dollar renovation to accommodate this experience. Another challenge was to publicise that the hotel had a new name – Thistle – which was relatively unknown to the target audience and media in Malaysia and the region. Port Dickson once a thriving resort destination for Malaysians particularly from Kuala Lumpur had over the last few years lost its shine and ‘must-go’ destination for Malaysians.

The strategy was to create a world first campaign called ‘Kids’ In Charge’ through a campaign to invite ‘kids’ between the age of 8 and 14 to become ‘Directors’ of the Thistle Port Dickson resort. Ten kids were chosen to become directors. At each Board Meeting the kids were given a specific agenda as to what they would like to see and experience in a family hotel. All the kids were given a Director’s uniform to wear and use during the board meetings. Selected media were invited to observe and report on the Board Meetings.

The media publicity during the campaign period exceeded RM 9 million. The return on investment was over 13,000 per cent. The occupancy rate at the hotel increased from below 50 per cent to over 90 per cent two months into the ‘Kids’ In Charge’ campaign. Through the high impact publicity in all media from print, online and television the hotel ranked number one on Trip Advisor for Malaysian hotels.



Zamir Khan
Head of Award Events 

Tel: (+852) 3175 5273
Email: zamir.khan@haymarket.asia


Kaling Man
Events Manager

Tel: (+852) 3175 1993
Email: kaling.man@haymarket.asia


Atifa Silk
Brand Director

Tel: (+852) 3118 1500
Email: atifa.silk@haymarket.asia