A holistic tribute to Festive Advertising

Festive Advertising* is a big deal in Malaysia. With almost a quarter of a billion Ringgit recorded adex every year, festive advertising is a barometer of consumption trends and retail spend. Some call it the shopping season and there’s much truth in that. It is also a time when a hike in ad spend by brands and collectively festive advertising has driven a lot of marketing activity with heightened consumer anticipation.

MARKETING magazine Malaysia has consistently recognised the significance of this with its regular Experts Choice Awards amongst its readers.

While year-end spends were always a sort of watershed moment for marketing with the looming new year and sales season, one can see  that Raya trumps Christmas through the festive adex lens. Almost 35% of total television adex is being utilised during festive periods.

But with the digital platforms (including OOH) factoring as much as 70% of adex, the need to marry television with festive brand films is the optimal route for advertisers embracing a multi-platform strategy that allows a deeper connection with a more receptive and engaged consumer.

*_Includes Merdeka/National Day. Source: Nielsen and Kantar _

Astro nurtures a home for festive TVCs

Astro has created a highly accessible and integrated platform for Malaysians to watch multicultural stories through a branded film marathon. This allows brands to optimise their marketing budgets by reaching a broader audience beyond the digital realm, connecting with quality and engaged consumers across Astro’s ecosystem.

This initiative aims to provide a cinematic feel on TV that resonates with viewers and enhances the festive mood.

They have created several new content initiatives focusing on delivering originality, creativity, and relevance for brands…

Phase 1 – Pre-Promo 

Astro’s Dedicated 24/7 Festive Brand Channel: an exclusive pop-up channel that’s available for all Astro subscribers.

  • You can brand the channel according to the festive period e.g. for CNY, the channel can be branded as ‘(tú) Too Fun’, for Hari Raya ‘Cerita Raya Kita’, etc.
  • Past films can also be shared here, while teasing upcoming films by revisiting memorable and evergreen brand films.
  • This will be done through pre-promos across high-rated vernacular channels, as well as amplified on their popular social platforms for radio and digital.

This helps brands to extend their exposure and visibility and increase audience anticipation for the upcoming campaigns.

Phase 2 – Amplification

Shorties Celebration Series: a cinematic event on a pop-up channel presenting the latest brand films in episodic format, with fresh runs and repeats during the festive period.

  • You can tailor it to a specific festive or occasion, such as Merdeka, where multiracial hosts from different vernaculars come together and present the best short film of the year. This approach adds a personal touch to the content by reflecting the cultural and linguistic diversity of the audience, creating a sense of inclusivity that connects with viewers on a deeper level, ensuring that everyone feels represented and engaged during the festive.
  • Leverage popular entertainment talk shows on Astro Ria, such as MeleTOP and HLive, Astro can remind audiences to watch the brand films.
  • Additionally, sponsor segments, lower third banners, branded advertorials, and social media postings on Facebook and Instagram will be incorporated, for higher recall.
  • Brand integration opportunities on popular news segments such as Astro Awani, Astro AEC, and Astro Vaanavil, including thematic discussions, interviews with brands and creators as well as a vox pop. A dedicated news segment will be aired to announce the initiative, allowing brands to have their films discussed in news context, gaining additional exposure and credibility.
  • A dedicated VOD Catalogue offers a seamless viewing experience. Astro can curate a dedicated reel on Astro’s VOD interface, exclusively housing all the Short Film Stories. This allows viewers to easily access and enjoy the films at their convenience, increasing engagement and repeat views.

Phase 3 – Engagement

The brand films can be transformed into prelude shows leading up to the main festive programming across multiple channels. Full-length brand films will be aired across key Astro Channels with high frequency, featuring one brand per channel daily. Additionally, there will be a 30-second cut down as well.

Phase 4 – Sustenance

Harness the power of audio films to drive storytelling, Astro can extend the brand’s festive message into a one-minute audio brand film format.

This will be distributed across Astro radio stations, maximising exposure to a vast audience of 17.9 million weekly listeners.

So, what are you waiting for?

With 30 days left to plan for CNY and about 60 days until Hari Raya 2024, anticipation is fast building up.

Festive season is a time when poignant stories count the most in marketing. Now you can make the most out of it by powering up your brand films with Astro’s 360° transmedia ecosystem for wider reach and the exposure it truly deserves.

For further enquiries, reach out to Astro Media Solutions team here!


Video highlight is available here

Chinese New Year (CNY) 2023

Theme: (tú) Too Fun!

Brands: IJM Land, PayNet, Hong Leong, U Mobile, Bio Essence and Sun Strong Entertainment

Key highlight: Hong Leong garnered high brand film reach at 1.2 million audiences and extended on demand viewing reaching 1,322 households in just 2 weeks.

Hari Raya 2023

Theme: Cerita Raya Kita

Brands: Grab, Celcom, Maxis and IJM Land

Key highlight: Celcom recorded a high peak at 7.6 million TVC reach, while Grab achieved high On Demand viewing reaching 40,484 households.

Merdeka Brand Film 2023

Theme: Tentang Kita, Kisah Malaysia

Brands: CelcomDigi, OPPO, PLUS, U Mobile

Key highlight: PLUS’ Merdeka brand film wowed 4.2 million TV viewers during a 4-week campaign, alongside a shorter version impressively reaching 7.6 million viewers.

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The APPIES is an annual event that presents a rare opportunity for creative, media, digital and marketing agencies or brands to present their best campaigns to the industry.

This is the only event where Live Presentations meets Live Judging.

Similar to TED Talks, The APPIES is the chance for great presenters with outstanding work to show it off to some of the industry’s most important industry leaders.

This year’s winners will receive Gold, Silver or Bronze trophies for 21 categories, and 6 special Best of Best categories (red trophies) that require no submissions!

Campaign entries must have run between June 2023 to May 2024

Submissions Deadline
30th June 2024

APPIES Festival – Judging & Presentations
11th – 12th July 2024 (Malaysia)


Download Event PDF
Submit Entries Here

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