File photo of NSTP Group’s facebook page. [NSTP/Abdullah Yusof]

KUALA LUMPUR: Big companies are spending less on marketing as they look to get more impact for every dollar spent through an increased focus on social media.

Celcom Axiata Bhd, for example, had spent less than in 2016 but saw a greater impact by shifting its focus from foreign celebrities to social media by showcasing Malaysian values that connect with the company's brand values.

For National Day and Malaysia Day 2017, Celcom brought Live two short films and a microsite on the former Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman's teachings on racial harmony.

The campaign was called Celcom Merdeka Integrated.Marketing agency for Celcom, M&C Saatchi strategic planning director Chia Mei Yeng said the films had garnered more than two million views each, the highest views in August last year when it was aired.

Further, as a result of the campaign, Celcom managed to recover and gain higher market share in brand value in the second half of last year, she added.

Chia said, quoting Kantar NTS brand health study, Celcom had previously lost five-point market share, trailing behind Maxis and Digi. 

"To curb the brand from a further decline, it was imperative for Celcom to ensure it relates and connects with target market.

"There is no hard selling here as the brand takes a back seat in the video. It showcases the values of Malaysians, including inclusiveness and unity. This is how we portray the brand values," she said during her presentation on Celcom Merdeka Integrated at Appies 2018.

In the past, Chia said Celcom leveraged only upon foreign celebrities to uplift its brand, which costed higher marketing budget. 

She said the strategy served its purpose but then it left consumers feeling that Celcom has lost its relevance.

For Telekom Malaysia Bhd, it has consolidated all its platforms under one brand without having to spend big as it sees higher consumer engagement from the strategy.

Its marketing executive Eelynn Kong said TM has transformed its brands from Unifi broadband, HyppTV and webe into a singular brand called Unifi, making it happen via a mobile first app driven strategy.

"To make consumers a part of the brand, the intent was to consolidate all of our platforms under one brand by making it easier for consumers.

"This way, Unifi will stand out more. We could win more "moments" or time of consumers across home, mobile, content. All will be under one app" Eelynn said.

"All other offerings will be expanded under one Unifi universe, that is under one app," she added.

More than 200 delegates from all over industries attended the Appies 2018, held from April 16 to 17.

At the event, the attendees get to discover 44 marketing case studies across six industry categories.

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