Creativity shines at the Microsoft Advertising Story Awards 2012

26 April, 2012


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Two winners announced for the Southeast Asia round of Microsoft Advertising’s new global creative storytelling contest

SINGAPORE — Microsoft today announced the Southeast Asia winners of its new creative storytelling contest – The Microsoft Advertising Story Awards (MSAs). In a closely contested competition, Young & Rubicam (Y&R) Singapore won the brand category, and Ignition Factory, a division of Omnicom Media Group, Asia Pacific, received top honors in the non-profit category, both with an impressive display of creativity and innovative thinking.

Launching for the first time in January 2012, the competition invited marketers from nearly 30 markets around the world to submit a new hypothetical digital media plan and creative idea for a brand or non-profit of their choice using Microsoft Advertising’s storytelling platforms. Entries were received from across Southeast Asia and Hong Kong covering a range of different brands and non-profits, but the winning two stood out for their strong creative ideas, expertly executed through the power of storytelling.

Jonny Lang, from Y&R Singapore, proposed a geo-located content and social network for a popular alcohol brand. The campaign creates an online experience for people to discover the best places to meet, drink and be together, while giving the brand access to a compelling and intriguing new underground layer of the internet. Jeremy Paul, from Ignition Factory, proposed a powerful campaign to raise awareness about the increasing number of cyclist deaths in Singapore and educate drivers about safe passing distances. The campaign uses ghost bikes and social media to humanize the statistics, using content from the victim’s social media sites to celebrate the stories of their life.

Participating in the judging panel, Gareth Mulryan, Head of Digital, ZenithOptimedia Asia Pacific, commented: “The winning entries were the ones that told a great story. The cyclist campaign was so personal and really used the digital platform to engage and educate its audience, while the beer campaign offered a fun and collaborative way to address its evolving audience using technology. Each effectively delivered an integrated and immersive experience across different platforms and devices, channels and networks. Both winners impressed us with their innovative use of the Microsoft storytelling channels and their original ideas. Congratulations to Jonny and Jeremy.”

Kenneth Andrew, Marketing Director for Asia, Microsoft Advertising said: “The quality of the winning ideas is a testament to the willingness of creative and media agencies in the region to embrace digital as the canvas for telling brilliant stories. At Microsoft Advertising we are passionate about providing advertisers with the technology to connect ideas and people. This contest proves how powerful ideas can speak to audiences through technology.”

Jonny Lang, who won the brand category of the competition, commented: “The key to the success of this idea was in building a platform that brings drinkers together to tell and enjoy stories, rather than just executing a campaign to promote the drink itself. The scope and the scale of ideas are normally constrained by the natural limitations of a brief. In this case I had the freedom to creatively use technology restricted only by my own imagination. Now I just want to find a way to build it for real."

Jeremy Paul, who won the non-profit category of the competition, commented: “Road death statistics are cold facts, easily ignored by the public and so the toll continues. Using the storytelling power of Microsoft Advertising platforms to keep the victims’ memory alive through social media forces us to see not the statistics but the humanity behind them. It’s a unique opportunity for an important cause.”

The submissions from Y&R Singapore and Ignition Factory Singapore will now be put forward to the final stage of the competition, where their ideas will go head-to-head with the winning entries from all markets participating in the competition. The final judging panel will pick two global winners to be announced on or around June 1st, who will be treated to a week-long Cannes Lions VIP experience in June 2012.


About Microsoft Advertising
Microsoft Advertising provides advertisers and publishers with media, tools and services designed to drive deep and profitable engagement with their audiences. This includes a global media network of Microsoft properties such as MSN, Windows Live, Xbox LIVE, and partner properties. The Microsoft Advertiser and Publisher Suites simplify planning and management of campaigns and content, offering a range of services that help advertisers and publishers untangle the complexities of digital media and get more out of their marketing and content investments. Microsoft Advertising makes buying and selling media simple, smart and cost-effective across media and devices spanning 42 markets and 21 languages. Visit http://advertising.microsoft.com/asia for more information.

About Microsoft
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

About Ignition Factory
Ignition Factory is an ideation hothouse that services clients within Omnicom Media Group. Ignition Factory does two simple things: we build bespoke brand consumer journeys which give us insight into a brands’ blockages and we create highly innovative communication ideas based in owned and earned channels which people talk about between themselves, thereby freeing up the blockages. In this way, innovation is focused on specific, defined, business challenges and wastage is eliminated.

About Omnicom Media Group
Omnicom Media Group is the media services division of Omnicom Group, Inc. (NYSE: OMC). Omnicom Media Group is made up of several media specialist companies. Among them is OMD Worldwide, the largest and most innovative media communications specialists in the world, and PHD Network, a leading media services company widely recognized for its pioneering and innovative work for clients.

About Y&R
Y&R is one of the world's leading global marketing communications companies. The agency’s work spans the communications spectrum and reflects the transformation that digital has driven across all media. We bring together the most experienced and most passionate leaders in strategic planning, channel planning, digital proficiency, and creative to create exceptional storytelling campaigns that build strong connections between our clients and their customers all around the globe.

In the past few years, the agency’s work has gained strong recognition by the industry. Y&R moved up to #6 from #14 on the Gunn Report and RKCR/Y&R is #1 in the U.K. and ranks #5 on Gunn's most awarded agency table. In 2010 at Cannes, Y&R was the #3 network worldwide. Y&R New York was the most awarded in the U.S. and #2 worldwide. The agency was also Network of the Year at the Art Directors Club, London International Awards and EPICA. This past year, Y&R added Network of the Year honors from the Dubaix Lynx Awards to its credits and held on to the #1 ranking at the Art Directors.

Y&R has 186 offices in 90 countries around the world. Its clients are some of the world’s most prestigious global brands, including Virgin Atlantic, Xerox, Revlon, Beeline, Campbell’s Soup Company, Colgate-Palmolive, Danone, GAP, Land Rover, MTV, LG and Telefonica, to name a few.

For more information, please contact:
Bridget Benelisha
Microsoft Advertising Phone: +6582988159
E-mail: a-briben@microsoft.com

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