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Best Raya ads of 2020: How brands are using technology to their advantage

Best Raya ads of 2020: How brands are using technology to their advantage

Selamat Hari Raya!

Text: Marissa Chin


Hari Raya ads are a tradition when it comes to celebrating the national holiday. Although the CMCO posed an obstacle for companies to film the ads this year, they still found a way to deliver touching and positive campaigns for this year's festivities.

Muslims around the world will be celebrating Raya a lot differently this year—without the boisterous family gatherings and open houses, families will have to seek new ways to enjoy each other’s company amidst the CMCO. Likewise, Hari Raya ads have always been highly anticipated this time of the year for companies to showcase their creativity as per tradition, and this year they had to look for other alternatives to deliver the same message in a different way.

From cutting-edge use of animation to innovative illustrations, here are some of the most creative Raya campaigns that went above and beyond the physical obstacles posed by the CMCO.

Maxis

From the nation’s telecommunications company, Maxis launched their first ever 8D audio film this week called Suasana Syawal Sempurna, featuring the voice of young Haziq as he reminisces on some of the things everyone loves about Hari Raya celebrations. 8D refers to futuristic audio technology that immerses the subject through spatial 3D audio, as if they are in the middle of what is happening. Therefore, the ad is best listened to on headphones for the best effect.

According to Tai Kam Leong, Maxis’ head of Brand and Marketing, the short ad that is entirely audio was made with the intention to “first stir the listeners’ imagination to picture the perfect Raya in their own ways, as everyone has a unique take on what makes the occasion meaningful to them.”

The ad was used as a prelude which shortly followed with a video ad that combined both audio and visual images of past and present Raya celebrations. The ad showed that Malaysians have experienced imperfect Rayas before—from natural disaster-stricken areas and distanced loved ones, underprivileged and impoverished communities—and yet, still found ways to have joyful and positive celebrations.

Kiehl’s Malaysia

Local KL-based illustrator, Dzurina Dzulkhaini worked together with global skincare brand, Kiehl’s to create artsy illustrations for their Raya campaigns. The Kiehl’s website is daintily decorated with beautiful illustrations and doodles that reflect Dzulkhaini’s personal experience with Raya celebrations—all done with just an Apple iPad Pro and Apple Pencil.

Check out the illustrations in their full detail on Kiehl's website here.

Petronas

Petronas is heralded amongst Malaysians as the company to put out top-tier tear-jerking ads that pull at all of our heartstrings. And this year, Petronas still managed to achieve that with their Raya ad this year titled “Antara Dua Jendela”.

The video combines the use of mixed media animations that is beautifully drawn to give an anime-like quality. The festive campaign centres around two neighbours in a small village as they experience the changing tide of Raya over the years.

Grab Malaysia

The popular car-sharing app decided to do a homestyle video for their Ramadan festive campaign this year. To stick with CMCO guidelines, Grab re-designed their concepts so that the video would be shot entirely from home. In an interview with A+M, regional country marketing head, Sulin Lau, explained that the team in Malaysia analysed Google Trends data to understand what their consumers were generally searching for this Ramadan period.

For their ad, props had to be delivered to the actor’s home and directions were given virtually. The series of videos gave a much more lighthearted, personal and friendly feel. “We simplified the films to be vlog-style, lighter on equipment and his family helped out with recce by taking photos of the different rooms in the house. There was a lot of 'DIY-ness' in here," said Lau.

Ikano Centres

Ikano Centres, under IKEA Southeast Asia, have recently launched a Raya ad that would no doubt please the younger masses. For their #TiptokRaya campaign, it engages audiences to participate in a dance challenge, featuring three elder generation ‘Toks’ who give advice and cooking tips to younger family members on how to keep the cultural traditions alive.

It is the first Raya brand film to feature a fully optimized 9:16 ratio for the audiences’ viewing pleasure. On their activation page, it also comes with the three full instructional dance videos, customised AR filters and stickers as well as a self-composed #TiptokRaya song.

Ensemble's GM Phang Mei Jeng explains that due to the CMCO, many younger family members and grandchildren would be clueless on how to prepare dishes for Raya celebrations which their ad hopes to help in a fun way. “The 'Toks' devise a clever way to connect with the younger generation by demonstrating their Raya prep tips through unique #TipTokRaya dances on TikTok," Phang added.

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