Re-Focus on Sales Growth & Brand Building are Driving Marketing in APAC

WARC has published an insights report outlining themes and successful marketing trends in the region.

Image by Jezael Melgoza

Following an analysis of the 64 shortlisted, Gold, Silver, and Bronze winning campaigns of the WARC Awards 2024 – Asia Pacific, WARC has published an insights report outlining themes and successful marketing trends that have been impactful in the region.

According to WARC, after a period of post-pandemic disruption, there’s a return to fundamental, results-driven strategies that solve real business problems, adding that campaigns from APAC that did well in the awards stand out for their focus on sales growth as well as building brand awareness.

“In this year’s APAC awards we see a sophistication in the way that marketers were using fundamental tactics, such as product demonstration and brand purpose, as well as old and new channels, to drive fame and participation,” said Rica Facundo, Managing Editor, WARC Asia, and author of the report.


“It’s been refreshing to see entries not be blind-sided by shiny new technology or platforms, and the themes outlined in the report reflect this mindset. Additionally, out-of-home saw a resurgence this year with 51% of campaigns utilizing it as part of the media mix.”

Bhaskar Choudhuri, CMO, Lenovo, APAC, and jury chair of the new Strategic Thinking category, added: “The overwhelming majority of the issues that the case studies were trying to solve were not marketing or advertising problems, but business problems related to brand growth, market share or category stagnation.”

Key insights

  • Disrupting classic tactics like sampling is paying off
  • Marketers are building strategies that enable long-term brand resilience
  • Brands are turning transactions into interactions

Disrupting classic tactics like sampling pays off

Promotions and sampling often play a smaller tactical role. Putting fame at the heart of the product experience breathes new life into driving trial and to improving brand perception to drive purchase.

Award-winning examples include New Zealand gold winner Samsung with its iTest campaign which targeted iPhone users to drive a trial of Galaxy OS and increase consideration. Bronze winner, Virgin Australia re-imagined its brand experience with Rebuilding a more wonderful airline experience.


And in Hong Kong, McDonald’s coffee retirement bronze-winning entry tapped into a fundamental human insight to increase social share of voice and increase sales.

Build strategies that enable long-term brand resilience

Businesses are tackling societal, cultural and environmental problems not to pull on heartstrings or solely for brand purpose, but to drive business results, and to ensure their brands are future-fit.

Award-winning campaigns include Democratising technology to help farmers fight climate change won a gold for Lay’s in India by taking a data-driven and grassroots fight against climate change to its 50-year-old farming audience. Bronze winner McDiploma for McDonald’s in Hong Kong reversed a decline in employee inflow. And gold-winning campaign An envelope that sealed the fate of women for small finance bank, Ujjivan, encouraged women to open bank accounts.

Turn transactions into interactions

Digitally savvy APAC consumers are increasingly expecting commerce to be less of a transaction and more of an engaging and immersive experience that collapses the sales funnel with creative flair.

In Australia, bronze winner Moët & Chandon partnered with Vogue to create a “choose your own adventure” shoppable video. In China, Re:Store silver-winning campaign saw KFC build a virtual store experience hosted on social media platform QQ. Shortlisted entry How Flipkart drove 1bn visits in a nation of 1bn people for e-commerce player Flipkart emphasized interaction over awareness.

A complimentary sample report is available here


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