Organised by the Hong Kong Management Association in collaboration with TVB, the HKMA-TVB Awards for Marketing Excellence 2011 honour organisations and marketers who have broken barriers and raised the standard of the local profession with their outstanding programmes.
Winning top prize this year is Melco Crown's The House of Dancing Water, which took gold in the Campaign Awards category. The Macau show is an outstanding event created through collaboration with companies across several countries. Melco Crown benefited from excellent communication with the show's internationally acclaimed director throughout the creative process so that it caters to the taste of Asian audiences while showcasing international creative flair, says Cheong Shin-keong, TVB's general manager for broadcasting.
Melco Crown gave tips to the director regarding elements appealing to Asians, but did not confine his creativity, says Cheong, who is also chairman of the awards' organising committee.
The company also demonstrated excellent co-ordination and thought to maximise the impact of its campaign. It kicked off the campaign in Hong Kong to build initial awareness and succeeded in attracting many mainlanders to the show quickly.
'As the show was only finalised shortly before its debut, the marketing and advertising team had to make do with what was available in its pre-opening campaign, but still managed to achieve maximum impact. The campaign represents an important breakthrough for the promotion of live performances in Macau,' Cheong says.
In another category, Citibank (Hong Kong) took top prize in the Excellence Awards. Its 'Citibank Banks on New Standards to Break Banking Inertia' was a campaign that convinced the judges. Also honoured was Ma Belle Jewellery's 'Free Golden Bangle' campaign. McDonald's Restaurants (Hong Kong) was also among the winners with its 'Breaking Out of the Price Prison - How McDonald's Launched Its First Premium Product, 35 Years on' campaign.
This year's winning campaigns promoted a diverse range of products and services and are across budgets of varying sizes. 'We see that quality and creativity do not equate to the amount of money invested in the campaigns,' Cheong says. 'These campaigns share some common elements, including creativity, innovation and meticulous planning in such areas as execution.'
Winning a citation in the Outstanding TV Campaign was Ocean Park for its Aqua City campaign. 'The campaign has leveraged on digital channels such as the internet. Each element helped elicit responses from the target audience and built anticipation to maximise the impact,' Cheong says.
China 3D's campaign for the film 3D Sex and Zen won bronze in the Campaign Awards category. The campaign was a good example of how a well-developed, targeted campaign could achieve major impact despite its limited budget. The company has acquired an in-depth understanding of its potential audience, including mainland Chinese and many women.
This year's Marketer of The Year is Josephine Wu, marketing director of Luxembourg Medicine, while the Distinguished Marketing Leadership Awards went to Vocalis Lo, manager for rewards at American Express International; Joseph Wong, managing director of Cookie Galerie; and Wu. 'Apart from outstanding marketing campaigns, Wu has demonstrated her proven ability to influence and inspire the entire company, from top management to divisions of product development and sales, to maximise impact,' Cheong says.
Wu is a pioneer of product diversification and has convinced her company's top management of the market potential of new product lines, such as mosquito repellents, and revamped branding strategies and product images.
Wong has used his experience in marketing classical music organisations to promote his own company, marketing a completely different product.
Lo has helped develop American Express' 'Easy Pay' programme, which waives the need for cardholders' signatures for purchases below HK$500. 'While American Express has been associated with purchases of more expensive items, the campaign has helped expand its market share for small purchases,' Cheong says.