This piece was first Published in MARKETING WEEKENDER Issue 346
A reminder of what the Malaysia Airlines brand is all about is reflected in their new campaign which is centred on what all Malaysians have instilled in them, often from an early age – hospitality.
Themed ‘This is Malaysian Hospitality’, the ad had the ambition of ‘creating something that could stand on the world stage’ according to Adam Chan, creative director at Imaginary Friends, who collaborated with Directors Think Tank and Bonsey Jaden to produce Malaysia Airlines’ latest campaign.
Wanting the ad to reflect clearly on Malaysian hospitality as a natural trait of Malaysians, Lau Yin May, Group Chief Marketing and Customer Experience Officer, Malaysia Airlines said: ”We wanted to show how Malaysia Airlines delivers services. That Malaysian hospitality begins with us.”
“As the national airline, we represent Malaysia to the world. First impressions are important. We want this ‘hospitality’ trait to define us as Malaysians. That this hospitality is ingrained in us and not choreographed,” she added.
The Creation of the Hospitality message
Adam said every means was availed of – from a robotic arm, intricate sets, an original song by local artistes to an actual cabin crew member, Shazni, to produce the Malaysian Hospitality experience.
Adam also described the campaign spot as ‘surreal and whimsical’ and as an ode to the people of Malaysia. Something that involved pooling together the best local talents and expertise where everyone “knew they were doing it for something bigger than themselves”.
Describing the making of the ad as dramatic, Adam went on to say that unforeseen issues caused the shoot to be extended by an extra day – a step that he said was fully supported by the client who clearly understood ‘the intentions behind it’.
“Initially we were tentative about it. There were talents on standby and some of our staff had been there for fourteen hours. But we understood the difficulties involved and appreciated the professionalism shown by everyone,” Yin May told Marketing Magazine.
She explained: “We looked at the extra day of shooting in a positive light given various circumstances including the use of new technology.”
Even post production took a mammoth effort, revealed Adam, as every intricate detail had to be pored over and scrutinised to ensure the continuity of the single shoot to produce a surreal effect.
“Whimsical took the form of Shazni, an actual cabin crew member, ‘appearing’ at specific points in the ad. This was done to reflect the charm of Malaysian hospitality.”
“It was definitely satisfying and it wasn’t just about the output. It was also very much the journey, the process of getting there,” Adam emphasised.
Bonsey Jaden x Imaginary Friends
Associate Creative Director
Associate Creative Director
Head of Operations
Creative Services Manager
Directors Think Tank
Heng Tek Nam
Hyeon x Aoi Pro, Chevie Law
Suraya / Don Wong
Novis / Ain Nasir
Arman / Ipson
Vinie / Sivagamy
Chris Cheng / Akira
Pitch Audio Magic
Group Chief Marketing & Customer Experience Officer
Lau Yin May
Global Head of Marketing
Wong Wai Kuan
Head, Brand, Strategy & Creative
Head, Social Media
Head, AV Production
Head, Art – Digital
Chow Chuan Yean
Senior AV Producer
Admad Ezzat Hakimi Ahmad Kamil
Cheok Mok Yee
Senior Art Director
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