Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Who ‘stole’ SM MOA’s Globe? IKEA PH or Netflix PH?

Manila, Philippines – The Philippines was inundated with reports that the well-famed ‘Globe’ located at the SM Mall of Asia (MOA) has been ‘stolen’, to which the management has responded with a statement that it has been ‘working’ with authorities regarding the incident.

Adding to the saga fuel was a video uploaded by netizen Chester Allan Tangonan on Facebook, in which his dashboard attached to his motorcycle captured the ‘moment’ that the Globe had been taken away by a helicopter.

The MOA Globe has been a well-known landmark in Metro Manila that has greeted SM MOA customers since its opening in 2006. In 2009, the ‘Globe’ was equipped with LED lights, and therefore called ‘Globamaze’. The Globe is Asia’s first and only fully global video display installation.

SM MOA Globe
The SM MOA Globe. Photo Courtesy of Charles Gaisano/Flickr

The ‘accidental’ blame on IKEA Philippines

Netizens have speculated at first that the latest ‘stolen MOA Globe’ saga was a marketing stunt by the Philippine arm of multinational furniture giant IKEA. It should be noted that IKEA Philippines, known to be the largest IKEA store globally, is set to open in November 25 this year after delays.

As the ‘stolen MOA Globe’ saga continued, IKEA Philippines recently posted a statement across their social media channels that clarified that their local brand mascot, Tito Ball, was not to be blamed for the incident. They also added that while their mascot was last seen at the vicinity during November 11 this year, they ‘asked’ the public to await ‘investigation’ results.

It was Netflix’s ‘Red Notice’ stunt after all

Hours after the ‘incident’ was made public, Netflix Philippines announced across their social media platforms that the Globe is ‘back’, and it was all part of a marketing ploy to promote the platform’s newest film ‘Red Notice’.

The film follows the story of an FBI agent John Hartley, played by Dwayne Johnson, who reluctantly teams up with an international art thief Nolan Booth (played by Ryan Reynolds) to capture Sarah Black, played by Gal Gadot.

Industry insiders have estimated that the film has made US$1.25m to US$1.5m from 750 theaters in the United States before its streaming debut on 12 November.

So, who stole the ‘stunt’? Netizens react

Netizens were quick to assume in the first few hours of the ‘stolen MOA Globe’ incident that IKEA Philippines was the brand behind the stunt due to the nearing opening date of IKEA’s first-ever store in the country. Furthermore, netizens also joked that the Globe might be stolen, only to be replaced by Tito Ball, which takes the personification of a meatball, a known food staple served across IKEA franchises globally.

After the revelation of the marketing stunt by Netflix Philippines, netizens were disappointed with the execution, with many saying that the stunt lacked a ‘surprise element’, a huge contrast to Netflix Philippines’ widespread stunt for the Filipino occult series ‘Trese’, which ranged from ‘slashed’ billboards to taking over the facade of media conglomerate ABS-CBN.

Netizens were also quick to point out that IKEA Philippines got free publicity out of this ‘saga’, due to the lack of information prior to the true nature of the marketing stunt.

Apart from the brand stunts, the ‘incident’ made it to the top trending topics in Twitter Philippines. According to aggregate results from BrandMentions, the hashtag ‘#MOA_GLOBE’ has been shared 26.5k times, with a total reach of 209.5k across the platform.

Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Ikano Centres welcomes back shoppers with herd of ‘charismatic’ llama influencers

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia – Malaysia’s Ikano Centres, the IKEA-anchored shopping destination, is welcoming Malaysians back to their malls after the easing of extensive movement control orders (MCO) with a heart-warming campaign featuring a herd of charismatic and incredibly social Llama influencers.

Developed together with creative agency TBWA\Malaysia, the campaign plays off the warm phrase ‘lama tak jumpa’, a greeting commonly used when there has been a very long absence between catch-ups.

Natasha Aziz, head of customer experience and digital at Ikano Centres, said, “We have certainly missed our visitors. After such a long time, it feels so right to be welcoming them back with ‘Iama tak jumpa’. ‘Lama tak jumpa’ oozes warmth, excitement, and optimism as we move ahead. We are looking forward to safely welcoming back our communities to our shopping centres as restrictions start to ease.”

The campaign went live on 1 November, and each Llama influencer, whose personalities were made to radiate warmth and confidence, represents one of the four Malaysian Ikano Centres’ malls dotted across the country:

The fun and friendly LIPPIE represents the IPC Shopping Centre, while the always on-trend and stylish LLAMY is the llama of MyTOWN Shopping Centre.

Meanwhile, TIA, the active skateboard-riding llama represents Toppen Shopping Centre, with the artsy graffiti-spraying BEEKA llama is for Ikano Centre’s offering in Batu Kawan, Penang.

The campaign draws on experiences visitors had forgotten they were missing at Ikano Centres’ shopping centres such as the thrill of trying on new clothes, playing with gadgets to the smell and taste of cinema popcorn, and the general overall buzz of an environment filled with people once again. 

Social media content from the campaign

In addition to an animated music video, eye-catching social media content was developed to capture these memories and sensory experiences. As the malls open, shoppers will have the opportunity to collect the herd of vibrant Llama influencers during their shopping visits.

Yee Hui Tsin, TBWA\Malaysia’s CEO, said, “Our partnership with the Ikano Centre’s portfolio of malls in Malaysia is an exciting challenge as we work to ensure efforts are capturing a sense of freedom of movement and excitement, while also helping Malaysia’s assimilate into a ‘normal’ endemic lifestyle.”

Yee Hui Tsin adds, “The changing face of retail and shifts in consumer behavior has been extraordinary. However, retail remains the anchor of the Malaysia economy, evidenced by a distinct parallel between the strength of the economy and how well retail is fairing.”

On awarding the business to TBWA, Aziz said, “TBWA’s insight to our re-opening was spot on; they aptly captured the emotion around everything people were missing from visiting our shopping centres; the sounds, smells and shared experiences and how together we can create endless possibilities for when people come together.”

TBWA\Malaysia said it was awarded the business after a competitive pitch in August. TBWA\Singapore manages the IKEA brand across Singapore and Malaysia.

Marketing Featured Southeast Asia

Soon-to-be world’s largest IKEA in PH in search of external marketing specialist

Manila, Philippines – As early as 2018, global furniture manufacturer IKEA has spilled the beans that it will be establishing its first store in Southeast Asia country the Philippines – and not only that – a branch that is dubbed to be the world’s biggest store yet of the Swedish brand.

Artist impression of IKEA in the Philippines.

Come November 2020, the company has launched a mass recruitment drive, unveiling its plan to hire nearly 500 workers across functions of sale, recovery, and food assistance, and customer service, ahead of its eyed opening this year.

On professional network site LinkedIn, IKEA has recently posted a slew of vacancies for marketing including its search for external communications specialist.

With the company set to soon become fully operational, with an e-commerce site slated to go live before the launch of the physical store according to a Rappler report, it is only expected that the Filipino arm of the brand would start ramping up its marketing.

For the external communications specialist, IKEA Philippines is looking for “an energetic marketing enthusiast with a passion for home furnishings, advertising, PR and events” to help the brand successfully communicate its brand promise of “creating a better everyday life for the many people.”

Although titled as ‘specialist’, the post is listed as an entry-level position. The position’s main responsibilities would be assisting in the development of external communication materials through advertising and public relations, and will also contribute to the planning, coordination, and execution of campaign-related events.

Other qualifications for the candidate, IKEA wrote, would be having little to one year of experience in marketing communications especially in advertising or communications supporting retail launches and activities. The qualified candidate is also expected to be a people-person who enjoys interacting with people, and someone who has a flair for engaging people at all levels and for influencing outcomes. Ultimately, IKEA Philippines is looking for someone who can identify with its values and share its beliefs in brand positioning.

Aside from the communications specialist, IKEA Philippines is also in search of a social media manager who is meant to develop and implement a market search and social media strategy and framework for the brand. Vacancy for a loyalty officer is also up in the furniture brand to support the brand’s loyalty programs IKEA FAMILY and småles loyalty programs through contribution to marketing campaigns and communications aimed at the acquisition and retention of the said programs. All job posts are stamped with a deadline of applications by 30 January 2021.

IKEA Philippines repatriated Filipino nationals from IKEA stores worldwide.

Before the new year kicked in, IKEA revealed on its LinkedIn that it has undertaken as well a recruitment move that would both see the nurturing of existing IKEA talents as well as the activation of the strategy of localization. In late 2020, it has shared that it has repatriated 20 Filipino nationals who have garnered strong IKEA experience from overseas operations all over the globe.

Ahead of the opening of both its online and physical stores, IKEA PH releases its official job posting for key marketing positions.
The new IKEA store is being built at the country’s SM Mall of Asia.

The new IKEA store is situated in the country’s SM Mall Of Asia in Pasay City which is also the country’s largest and one of the biggest malls in the world. The 65,000-square meter branch, which will house its warehouse, e-commerce facility, and call center, is said to amount to the size of 200 basketball courts. The furniture giant, in total, has more than 400 stores in 50 countries.

Marketing Featured Global

After 70 years, IKEA drops iconic catalog

Sweden – Another mark of the digital takeover – global furniture brand IKEA has announced that it will cease publishing its iconic furniture catalog after seven decades of printing.

When digital channels started settling in as the norm, waves of publishing brands has migrated its physical assets, and IKEA is the latest one to make the switch. 

It hasn’t been long since the brand reached a distribution high of its catalog, which is a total of 200 million copies in 2016, distributed in different languages to more than 50 markets, but IKEA says “times are changing” and it has “become more digital and accessible while embracing new ways to connect with more people.”

Source: IKEA’s digital archive

The catalog, which was first put together in 1951 has grown to be more than a brochure of its products, eventually becoming an inspiration for people to spruce up and redecorate their spaces. 

For both customers and co-workers, the IKEA Catalog is a publication that brings a lot of emotions, memories and joy. For 70 years, it has been one of our most unique and iconic products, which has inspired billions of people across the world.

Konrad Grüss, managing director at IKEA’s worldwide franchisor Inter IKEA Systems B.V.
A catalog issue from 2012 (Source: IKEA’s digital archive)

In a press release, IKEA revealed it was its global franchisor Inter IKEA Systems B.V. which ultimately made the ‘emotional but rational decision’ to phase out the catalog, owing it to the changes in customer behavior and media consumption. 

“Turning the page with our beloved catalog is in fact a natural process since media consumption and customer behaviors have changed. In order to reach and interact with the many people, we will keep inspiring with our home furnishing solutions in new ways,” added Grüss.  

A spread from a 2020 issue (Source: IKEA’s digital archive)

The decision goes hand-in-hand with the ongoing transformation of IKEA to becoming more digital, where the company said it is continually improving its digital services and launching new apps for a better experience.

While the catalog will no longer run, for its last tribute, the brand will be preparing a book filled with home furnishing inspiration and knowledge, slated for 2021. 

Fans can also still access digital versions of the past catalogs through its digital museum, where copies trailing back to the first ever issue in 1951 can be accessed.