Brands that were faster than a speeding Ostrich

Huawei ostrich

( – Malati Siniah

It’s not every day you see an ostrich running on the highway, which is why the video taken by BFM producer Jeff Sandhu of yesterday’s incident spread like wildfire.

Brands were quick to catch on the incident addressing it on social media using the trending hashtag #‎RunOstrichRun‬. MARKETING spoke to the marketing heads from Huawei, Digi and INTI on their quick response to the incident.

Huawei’s Facebook post addressing the issue seemed to have a viral effect of its own, with over 6700 shares and counting, the post which cleverly snuck in its latest P9 phone earned a rousing approval from netizens for its quick action.

Matthew Ho, Regional Marketing Director, Consumer Business Group, Huawei Southern Pacific shared that the key was having an in-depth understanding of the product along with being in tuned with the trending news.

“When the Ostrich video trended on social media, the digital marketing team at Huawei Malaysia saw it as an opportunity to respond to something which was current and relevant.” he added
Working together with its newly formed agency TEAMHW, Matthew shared that the entire process from ideation, conceptualisation to execution took less than 30 minutes.

Matthew Ho Huawei

So how can other brands win at social? Here is Matthew’s advice:

• Have an understanding of your brand and product so you are able to relate it to relevant issues.
• A sense of humour when brainstorming helps with idea generation.
• While we need to move fast, take time to think your ideas through. Don’t rush for the sake of being the first.

No stranger to immediately responding to current events, DIGI was also quick to respond to the incident, with a Facebook post tied up the current Ramadan season.

Aileen Soo, Social Media Manager in Digi’s Digital Marketing team shared that they immediately alerted their agency FastBridge when they discovered the incident.

In a 15 minute brainstorm session between the agency and Digi the concept was executed onto its Twitter and Facebook pages.

“This is not the first time Digi has reacted to a trending topic. We did something similar to this during the Kiki-CDM25 incident which managed to change the conversation from being racially charged at the time, to one of forgiveness and solidarity.

The post reached over 500,000 people organically with over 23,000 positive reactions and comments. The post was also featured in the press.” Aileen shared.

INTI University opted for a more humorous route posting a meme of the ostrich onto its social channels.

Timothy Johnson, INTI’s Vice President, Marketing shared that the first thing they did was to ensure that the news was real, once they had validated the news through the mainstream media, the brand’s social media team quickly came up with the creative.

Speed was key in responding to current events according to Timothy, adding,
“Internet time is in minutes. Waiting for approvals from higher manager is a major limitation. Flexibility is key.”

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