See the magazine at:
Current Internationalist Magazine Cover

GOLD WINNER: Standard Chartered Bank, “Are You Ready?” — Marathon Campaign

Standard Chartered Bank

Client: Standard Chartered Bank

Entrant Company: PHD Hong Kong

Entry Category: A Local Execution of a Multinational Campaign

Names to be credited with submission:
• Kat Chan — Media Planning, PHD Hong Kong
• Cedric Lam — Media Planning, PHD Hong Kong
• Stephenie Lee — Media Buying, PHD Hong Kong
• Ray Wong — Media Planning, PHD Hong Kong
• Calvin Chow — Writer, TBWA\Hong Kong
• Law Chi Hang — Creative Director & Writer, TBWA\Hong Kong
• Michele Hui — Client Service, TBWA\Hong Kong
• Cindy Lam — Client Service, TBWA\Hong Kong
• Joseph Mok — Creative Director, TBWA\Hong Kong
• Ronald Trim — Art Director, TBWA\Hong Kong
• Esther Wong — Creative Director, TBWA\Hong Kong

Time Period of Campaign: 2008

Case Study Summary:

Marketing Situation: Standard Chartered Hong Kong wanted to leverage its successful corporate sponsorship of the Hong Kong Marathon for the past 11 years. The Marathon event plays a key role in engaging the public with the bank’s “one-bank-one-team” spirit as well as helping the bank to demonstrate their continuous commitment to the Hong Kong community.

The campaign objective was to develop a communication strategy that not only brought new energy to the event, but also developed business for their key products. The 2008 Marathon campaign needed to support the bank’s three product marketing campaigns-- Marathon Savings Account, Marathon Trade Account and Marathon Credit Card Offers. All products have incorporated the values and spirit of the Standard Chartered Marathon.

Key Insights: The campaign had two key target audiences—marathon runners and the public at large. The insights from these two groups formed the campaign’s strategy.

Target 1: Marathon Runners: Running a marathon of 10KM/26 miles is a grueling endurance challenge that requires preparation, hard work, and dedication. To succeed, runners must allow their passion and motivation for the race fuel their Marathon training regime.

Media needed to encourage the runners and demonstrate the kind of emotional support that lifts spirits and creates motivation for a Marathon challenge.

Target 2: Mass public
: Although a majority of the mass public does not take part in the race, most have witnessed this big annual Marathon event in the past. Friends, families or colleagues who participate will need their encouragement and support.

Media needed to find an avenue for the public to become active supporters and encourage the runners.

Media Strategy: The campaign fueled the city and engaged the public with Marathon excitement through integrated, strategic, and innovative media channels. The runners were supported throughout the Marathon process-- from training day to race day-- by cheering them on through strategic touch points. The Marathon campaign promotion also drove traffic and business product enquires for the bank.

Some detailed campaign elements included

• TVCs became “live” via outdoor media such as double-deckers buses, trams, shuttle-buses, the MTR tunnel and giant building walls. All communicated the same TV visuals of people cheering and supporting the Marathon runners.
• For non runners, a tactical short-term billboard was set up in the middle of a high traffic highway, which turned the road into a Marathon racing track. This tactic generated of a lot of curiosity before the event and gave the mass public a sense of participation each time they traveled through the highway.
• To motivate Marathons to go further during training, a cheering bus was designed to target them at strategic locations.
• Paper cups are normally used to carry fluids on race day. During training, cups were strategically placed to spell out words of encouragement. This medium has not been used for commercial purposes before.
• Social networking sites like facebook were used to form runners groups, so that race participants might share Marathon thoughts, news and gossip.
• A facebook application was also developed so that runners could create their own personal characters with photos.

How Could this be a Template for Other Campaigns or for World Class Standards?
• The campaign’s spirit to call for the people of Hong Kong to unify, cheer for the runners, and support them throughout the Marathon race embraces the collectivist culture in Chinese societies.
• Innovative use of media channels was designed to speak to audiences and reach them on strategic paths, from training to the race itself. Cheering cups and innovative short-term billboards have never been used for commercial purposes before.
• This brand building campaign successfully involved the community on a mass scale, but also drove business results.

Results: The Marathon spirit permeated both the runners and the supporters. The Standard Chartered Marathon not only attracted local residents but also people from around the world. Measured results included:
• 90% awareness of SCB’s sponsorship
• 98% awareness of the Marathon campaign
• 90% of the respondents felt that the Marathon enhanced Standard Chartered Marathon’s image and demonstrated its support to community events