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March 22, 2020







And Us creates new spot for Coca-Cola’s water brand. P3

Awards show in France is latest victim of coronavirus. P4

A regional agency tops rankings for first time. P3


“Culture will undoubtedly shift from the past we’ve just left behind in more ways than we can imagine.”

Searching for meaning

Part human, part machine

Consumers wouldn’t care if 77 per cent of brands vanished, says Havas’s latest survey. Dana Tahir examines the findings.

UM’s Melissa Moubarak heralds an era of ‘humanistic intelligence’ where we work hand-inhand with computers.

MAZHER ABIDI, strategy director at Initiative, on life and business after the pandemic passes.




Why it’s time for brands to listen As voice search continues to grow, DViO Digital’s Sowmya Iyer looks at how to prepare for the rise of the smart speakers.


March 22, 2020


FP7 McCann becomes first global shop to be named as world’s most effective agency in WARC rankings In the 2020 WARC Effective 100 rankings, McCann Worldgroup’s FP7 McCann was ranked as the world’s most effective individual agency. This marks the second time FP7 McCann has topped a global effectiveness ranking, following its triumph at the Global Effies. The WARC Rankings are a global index of creative, effective and media excellence in advertising. The WARC Effective 100 rankings take into account performance across top-tier strategy, marketing and creative shows around the world and are seen as particularly rigorous. McCann Worldgroup was also named the number one network for effectiveness in rankings. Tarek Miknas, CEO of FP7 McCann MENAT (Middle East, North Africa and Turkey), which includes the Dubai agency, said: “It’s a great honour for us to be recognised as the most effective agency in the world in the WARC Effective 100 rankings. I am also thrilled to see that Cairo ranked number 17 and Beirut ranked number 30 in the world. In a dynamic, challenging and rapidly evolving economic and cultural environment, through the collaborative power of our network of agencies, bringing together a range of regional and global expertise, we are reinventing the ways to speak to our

On a roll: This is the second global effectiveness ranking FP7 McCann has topped

consumers and partner with brands every day. This recognition for effectiveness proves just that.” Tahaab Rais, regional head of strategy and Truth Central at FP7 McCann MENAT, said: “This recognition also proves our consistency in generating volumes of creatively effective work on big

brands and the persistent focus from our teams on making sure every single brief is seen as an opportunity to create ideas that influence our culture and our clients’ business. One look at the range of ideas shows the range of clients we’ve been recognised for. This has also meant that our brands such as Babyshop,

Puck, Emirates NBD and Unilever have topped the global rankings in their categories too.” FP7 McCann Cairo came in at number 17 in the rankings and FP7 McCann Beirut ranked at number 30. FP7 McCann represents three out of four regional agencies in these global rankings.

Active DMC wins Okadoc start-up

ARWA DELIGHT BBQ For the launch of its new, fruit-flavoured Arwa Delight, Coca-Cola’s bottled water brand has released gravity-defying videos showcasing the unexpected realities of spontaneous weightlessness. Created by Dubai-based independent agency And Us, the videos show prominent influencer Muhannad Alharbi and others drink Arwa Delight and experience weightlessness, only to discover that aimlessly floating in the air isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. The videos were produced by Good People Cairo.

Active Digital. Marketing. Communications, (Active DMC) has been appointed by Okadoc to handle marcomms at a regional and global level. Okadoc, the ‘instant doctor booking platform’, is a UAE-based healthtech start-up that recently raised $10 million in the largest healthtech Series A in the MENA region to date. “Being selected by Okadoc as their communications partner at this juncture in the company’s expansion plans is a big deal for Active DMC,” said Louay Al-Samarrai, managing partner of Active DMC. “We’ve hit the ground running, working closely with the Okadoc team, providing strategic counsel, creating the right narrative and selecting the best vehicles to effectively communicate their solution offering.” Healthcare expenditure in the GCC is forecast to reach $104.6bn in 2022.


March 22, 2020

Cannes Lions advertising festival rescheduled to take place in October By Lindsay Stein With the coronavirus outbreak continuing to spread around the globe, Cannes Lions has decided to no longer hold the International Festival of Creativity this June in the south of France. Cannes Lions is moving the event to October 26-30 as part of its previously announced contingency plans. Last week, France put a strict 15-day lockdown in place, requiring citizens to not leave their homes in an effort to curb the spread of Covid-19. The virus has killed more than 250 people in France and infected more than 6,000. The decision to postpone the festival from June “comes following much deliberation with our partners and customers, as well as consultation with public health officials, the mayoral office of Cannes and the French Authorities,” said Cannes Lions in a statement. “We acknowledge the challenging circumstances facing us all as a community – we have been and continue to be in deep consultation with many of our customers and partners as we adopt our contingency plans. The health, safety and wellbeing of our customers,

employees, sponsors and partners remains our first priority,” it added. Earlier this month, Cannes Lions announced that all entries will still be judged and awarded in 2020, regardless of the festival’s timing. Ascential, the parent company behind Cannes Lions and Dubai Lynx, has told its staff to work from home amid the coronavirus outbreak. A statement from Ascential said: “Cannes Lions will continue to monitor the rapidly changing developments associated with the Coronavirus outbreak. Although we have sound mitigation plans, we shall continue to monitor this situation carefully and continue to engage closely with our customers, as we start to work in collaboration to ensure we can recognise the world’s best creativity in 2020.” Philip Thomas, chairman of Cannes Lions, said: “The global situation is dynamic and changing rapidly. We felt it was critical to provide visibility on June as soon as possible. We will continue to liaise closely with our customers as we develop our plans.” Simon Cook, managing director of Cannes Lions, said: “Our community is facing unprecedented challenges

Postponed: Cannes Lions will has been postponed due to coronavirus

and collaboration has never been more important. We are focused on planning the festival – and our beating heart, the Lions – to ensure our community is able to recognise the extraordinary work it contributes to business, organisations and society.” Cannes Lions is also the co-owner of Dubai Lynx, along with Campaign

Middle East’s parent company, Motivate Media Group. On March 1, Dubai Lynx was postponed due to the coronavirus. It had been due to take place on March 8-11 but has now been rescheduled to happen on September 6-9 instead. All entries will be valid for the new dates, along with passes and awards seats.



Recently celebrating 125 years in the region, Sedar Global has launched a multi-level campaign, Your Space. Your Art, to communicate to consumers throughout the MENA region the launch of its e-commerce platform and its digital manufacturing technology. The Your Space. Your Art campaign showcases a new look and feel for Sedar in the hope of reaching out to the new generation of tech-savvy interior shoppers. The campaign “uses playful imagery and peculiar objects such as a giraffe in the home space, encouraging expressionism through design and textile selection whilst inviting shoppers to really own their tastes and personality to create an interior space that speaks to them”.

APCO Worldwide handles digital and PR for the Bahrain Economic Development Board (EDB) – the kingdom’s investment promotion agency. A key focus of APCO’s brand and marketing strategy is to be dynamic and react to the fast-changing business and consumer environment. The current coronavirus epidemic is a case in point, where APCO worked with the EDB to engage key stakeholders through savvy social media content production highlighting Dettol, which was one of the international companies the EDB had succeeded in bringing to Bahrain. The joint effort serves as an important example of how brands can create a positive engagement by nimbly and flexibly reacting to the global situation.

Creative concept, direction and production Wired/Mariam Fahmi Digitla agency People of the Internet

March 22, 2020

Carat MENA wins Meraas media pitch to focus on e-commerce and footfall

Meraas has a diverse portfolio across real estate, hospitality and more

Carat MENA has been awarded the media responsibilities for Meraas, the Dubai-based holding company managing a diverse portfolio across real estate, dining, leisure, hospitality and healthcare. Key to the agency’s selection was its strength in strategic planning across diverse markets with unique challenges and the ability to understand the brand’s deeper

business strategy in order to deliver growth through media, it said in a statement. With a mandate to build brand equity, with a focus on boosting e-commerce and footfall, Carat will target residents of and visitors to Dubai on a regional and global level. Speaking about the win, Ramzy Abouchacra, CEO of Carat MENA, said: “We are very pleased to start

the year with the win of this prestigious account. “This success is a testament to the team and all of their hard work. We are excited to partner with Meraas to help communicate their brand promise of making Dubai a better place to live, work and visit and continuing to place the Emirate on the map as a global destination of choice.”


And Us wins Abu Dhabi Grand Prix Yas Marina Circuit has appointed independent creative marketing and design firm And Us as its creative agency for the Formula 1 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. As the final race in the Formula 1 calendar, the prestigious Abu Dhabi F1 Grand Prix is considered one of the cornerstones of the international racing scene. Fadi Yaish, founder and chief creative officer of And Us, said: “As one of the most prestigious, high-profile events in the UAE, the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix is one of the Emirates’ crown jewels. We’re honoured to have been selected for this project. “Over the course of the last few years, [marketing and communications director] Michael Golding and [creative director] Nikki Oberholzer have elevated the Abu Dhabi F1 and Yas Marina Circuit as a whole to one of the region’s most sought-after destinations that continues to be held in high esteem all over the world. As such, we look forward to joining them on their journey and doing our part to help propel their brand forward even more. “ Mahmoud Jaber, brand lead of And Us, said: “If Yas Marina is the heart of Abu Dhabi, the Abu Dhabi F1 is very much its soul. It’s been a pleasure to collaborate with their team.”



Drawing attention to the widening gender pay gap in Lebanon, Fiftyfifty, a Lebanon-based NGO promoting gender equality, in collaboration with Impact BBDO Dubai, initiated a country-wide campaign titled ‘Close the Gap’, highlighting the 21 per cent average gender pay gap that remains to be closed. The campaign uses Arabic typography and carefully chosen words to show people what it means to close the gap literally. In Arabic, in some cases closing the gap between the letters, changes the entire meaning of the words. “Not Yours” became “Your Money”; “Inequality” became “For Equality”; “If I May” became “I Achieve”; “Waiting” became “Claiming”.

For 11 years, many Saudis had confused Saudi Telecom Company’s @stc_ksa Twitter account with that of Chris Rowland, an American living in New Jersey who joined Twitter under the handle @stc after his college nickname St. Chris. In 2019, STC reached an agreement with Chris to hand over his Twitter handle, and the company’s objective was to communicate to their followers that @stc was now officially stc group’s handle and no longer Chris’ handle. Not exactly earth shattering news, unless of course you know the backstory. Who would ever have imagined that through this hilarious twist of fate, Chris Rowland would be exposed to Saudi culture, interact with the thousands of followers, and even manage to reply to them in Arabic? Drawing inspiration from the rise of docutainment, JWT KSA developed a compelling short film, shot on location in New Jersey. It explored Chris’ side of the story, with a dramatic storyline.


March 22, 2020

OK, GOOGLE? DViO Digital’s Sowmya Iyer looks at how to get your business ready for voice search


quick look at some recent data and you know voice search is set to dramatically change how businesses are looking at their digital marketing and search engine optimisation (SEO) strategy. By 2020, voice searches are expected to make up more than 50 per cent of all searches. Sales and adoption of leading voice search devices such as Google Home, Amazon Echo (Alexa), Google Assistant, iPhone (Siri), Android Phones and Microsoft Cortana have grown exponentially. User behaviour, too, is changing rapidly to adopt voice search technology.

Overall, the evolution of smart homes and screenless devices, smaller phone screens and shorter human attention spans are factors in voice search fast becoming an integral part of our day-to-day life.

Sowmya Iyer is founder and CEO of DViO Digital

Where are voice search devices placed at home?

So, what’s propelling user behaviour to change from text search to voice search? Convenience: We type at approximately 40 words a minute for text searches, while we speak to voice search devices at 150 words a minute. Natural language: In text search we have to use a string of set keywords, whereas voice lets us use conversational language. Superior user experience: Text returns a clutter of multiple links that the user must sift through; voice returns a relevant and sharp result. Supports continuous tasking: You can voice-search a recipe while cooking, or search for a restaurant near you while driving.






How should businesses leverage voice search? You spent months optimising your keywords to appear among the top 10 links on Google. In reality, more than 56 per cent of searches are zero-click, and the click-through rate (CTR) for your brand – even when you are ranked right on top – is usually in a single-digit percentage.

Showering or using the bathroom 3%

Cooking 6% Working 7% Watching TV 7%

Common Room

Source: Storage; numbers shown are proportion of usage

Where do people use voice search? Exercising or walking 3%

When do people use voice search? Studies show that a majority of users choose voice search while driving. While this should be unsurprising, since a text search is not preferable while driving, the pie chart pictured should also serve as an indicator of why voice search is gaining popularity:

Zero-click searches


Clicks-through organic results


Clicks-through paid results


Source: SparkToro; data on Google Searches; September 2019 Driving 53%

Doing another activity 22%

Source:; numbers shown are proportion of usage

By contrast, the advantage of voice search beats every SEO result you have ever generated. For starters, optimise your website and content for voice search. Getting a firstmover advantage in your sector is important because it won’t be long before other brands start optimising for, say, the most asked questions relevant to your business. Voice search enables you to be the only result. When a user voice-searches an answer, he or she won’t need to go through

a list of results to manually pick the one that’s most applicable. Imagine it is your brand that is facilitating that answer. It will not only improve the discoverability of your business or brand, but also put you in a position of leadership for your category. Interestingly, most voice searches are triggered by a combination of just 25 keywords. The top few among them include how, what, best, where, can, easy, and when. What should your content strategy be to ace voice search? Users’ search patterns create interesting micro-moments for you to present your brand contextually. The main objective of a user when querying is called search intent, and falls under one of the following four categories: Research: I want to know. (Which banks offer the best exchange rate?) Explore, explore near me: I want to go. (Where is my nearest hypermarket?) Learn: I want to do. (How best can I take care of my skin?) Buy: I want to buy (Where can I buy an iPhone11?) So your content should include FAQs, how-to guides, product information, buying guides and so on. Find the most searched questions related to your business, and create actionable, relevant and conversational content to address those questions. Conversational and simple are the keywords. Serving navigational intent can be an incredible opportunity for brick-and-mortar businesses. Given that a significant number of voice searches are used to get directions, integration of local listings with voice search can help drive valuable footfalls. Use of “long-tail keywords” for targeting can be an effective strategy to achieve relevance as well as ranking. Long-tail keywords, as the name suggests, are longer keywords than regular search queries. The trick to targeting the right long-tail keywords is to look at what conversational phrases or questions users are likely to employ in their voice search for your business. For a successful voice search strategy, it is important to understand why a user will turn to voice search. Then you can create a great user experience through the right answers. The next time you wonder if voice search is relevant for your business, ask yourself: “What am I losing in my business by not appearing in more than 50 per cent of a user’s searches?” And that percentage is going to grow.



Tailormade Video-Driven Experiences

Exponential Interactive Announces Its New Business Division,, Is Expanding Into International Markets allows brands to amplify their advertising with customised, video-driven solutions served across channels and screens, including connected TV. Dubai, UAE— Digital advertising leader Exponential Interactive announces today that it is rolling out its new, video-driven business division,, in international markets. allows brands to serve tailormade video-driven experiences across screens, including connected TV (CTV) and Over the Top (OTT). This announcement is on the heels of a successful launch in the U.S. in October 2019.  Exponential has a decade long history of creating results-driven advertising solutions for brands globally. VDX, or video-driven experiences, has a proven track record for international advertisers. The product suite incorporates existing solutions, as well as new technologies developed for Advanced TV. By 2021, 82% of all consumer internet traffic will be video, according to Cisco. Brands must adapt their advertising strategies accordingly. makes it simple for brands to create personalised video-driven experiences across channels and screens, from mobile devices and laptops to CTV/OTT.’s COO Scott Kellstedt explains is designed with “Our solution allows its customers’ evolving needs brands to complement in mind. “As in the U.S., brands throughout Europe and Asia are their TV buys and amplify adopting cross-channel, digital their video messaging, video strategies. According to IAB research, more than 8 in reaching their most 10 advertisers believe a unified relevant consumers.” multi-platform buying solution (TV + digital video) is important. Adding CTV into the product mix helps close the loop for the growing number of brands looking to execute an all-screens approach.” Kellstedt adds that what really sets apart is its ability to deliver tailormade-solutions. “Video is of universal value to the market, but brands across categories have different objectives and concerns. Audience behaviour also varies depending on the vertical, the size of the purchase, and the prospect’s position in the consideration journey. Our solution allows brands to complement their TV buys and amplify their video messaging, reaching their most relevant consumers.”

About is a global advertising technology company that is transforming the way brands connect with relevant audiences in today’s converging video landscape. We create video-driven experiences that integrate a brand’s TV and digital messages and empower marketers to captivate viewers, compel action, and convert awareness into response. We connect the dots between people, devices and households to deliver a more consistent, relevant, and meaningful brand experience across connected TVs and personal devices. Our multidimensional approach to household targeting provides visibility into the entire consumer journey, allowing brands to amplify their message and turn consumers into customers. is a division of Exponential Interactive, Inc. Learn more at

“The expansion of TV into the digital space with the rapid growth of OTT offers advertisers an exciting new way to reach audiences. For years, our video-driven experiences have enabled brands to capture the ‘short’ attention span of viewers with crisp messaging across personal devices and desktops. With the launch of, we can now extend that reach across TV screens, maximising the scale of advertising campaigns and engaging TV viewers in meaningful ways.“

-Amer Attyeh Managing Director MENA



March 22, 2020

WHO CARES? Few would notice if most brands disappeared, according to Havas’s latest Meaningful Brands Study. The group’s Dana Tahir looks at how your brand can make itself matter


o one would care if 77 per cent of brands disappeared tomorrow. That’s what more than 350,000 people across 31 countries had to say when asked about the importance of a brand in their lives. Alarming, isn’t it? This statistic comes from Havas Group’s 2019 annual Meaningful Brands Study, which takes us beyond a product to explore how brands tangibly improve people’s lives and the roles they play in society. Launched 10 years ago, the ongoing study covers more than 1,800 brands across 22 industries worldwide. In order to effectively gauge how meaningful a brand is, communicators or marketers need to take into consideration three characteristics. First, we look at the product’s functional benefits – how well it works, and whether it delivers on its promise to consumers. Second is the customer impact – whether it be from an emotional, social, financial, or even intellectual standpoint. Third is the contribution to society – what causes does the brand support, directly or even indirectly? When these three pillars are combined, across different levels of importance based on country and industry, they define a meaningful brand. So why should brands care about being meaningful? The bottom line is that being meaningful continues to be good for business. A brand’s stock market performance and marketing KPIs outperform competitors when it is considered a meaningful brand. If you’re a meaningful brand, 70 per cent of customers are more likely to repurchase from you, another 76 per cent will be your advocates, and 40

per cent of clients are willing to pay premium prices. However, if your brand stands on the lower end of the spectrum, only 29 per cent are likely to repurchase, 37 per cent will advocate for you, and 18 per cent will pay premium prices. Now more than ever, a brand’s contribution to society through “brand activism” is becoming an essential part of how people determine whether a brand is meaningful. At a time when, globally, trust is at an all-time low, more than half of those surveyed expect brands to take the responsibility to play a more important role than governments in improving society. Luckily, the UAE government has launched a number of policies and initiatives to encourage the public and private sectors to act responsibly when it comes to the environment, including, UAE Vision 2021, the UAE National Climate Change Plan 2050 and the UAE Energy Plan 2050. What does that mean for us here in the MENA region? Brands and corporates will need to rev up their efforts to effectively communicate how they are contributing to society and making a positive impact on the environment, in order to resonate as a more meaningful brand to their stakeholders. The great news is, we have seen a steady flow of PR campaigns and breaking news stories across industries such as beauty, fashion, FMCG and technology, among many others, which have strong ties to sustainable best practices. Brands such as L’Occitane, Tumi, and Agthia are leading the change when it comes to taking

action to make a positive impact on the environment. On the sidelines of Gulfood 2020 Dubai, Agthia launched the region’s first 100 per cent plant-based water bottle. It also signed an agreement with Veolia, a global leader in waste management, in order to establish the collection and disposal of plastics in the UAE. The partnership also leverages an app where users can schedule plastic pick-ups from designated locations. In addition to this, L’Occitane is making major strides in supporting a circular economy through their commitment to make 100 per cent of their bottles

from 100 per cent recycled plastics and offering recycling services at all of their stores by 2025. They are working with influencers in the region to spread this message through beach clean-ups and raising funds to support charities involved in environmental causes. When it comes to sustainable apparel in the region, Tumi has launched a new sustainable collection, in which their bags are made from recycled material, and have committed to their mission to create durable products in an effort to increase the lifespan of their bags, ultimately reducing the load on landfills. Looking ahead, brands that continue to do their part to deliver functional products and services to stakeholders who provide personal benefits and contributions to society will become more relevant and eventually meaningful to people, helping the brands outperform their competitors and succeed. More importantly, how can we turn this statistic around, work with brands to create a lasting impact on society and provide more meaning to people?

DANA TAHIR is general manager, Havas PR


March 22, 2020


arely four months have passed since Campaign gathered industry leaders and interested readers together to discuss predictions for 2020. Nobody was making any guarantees, but we were nonetheless treated to considered – and in some cases conservative – insights from the worlds of media, creativity, customer experience and mobile on what might come to pass this year. How the world has changed since those heady days. If only those conservative predictions were the height of our worries today, as we confine ourselves to our homes and contemplate the future whilst engaged in ‘social distancing’ (already an early contender for 2020’s word of the year). It seems crass to think about how we might emerge from the other side of this moment in history. Indeed, nobody really knows when that might be and what state the world will be in. But since no CFO or CEO can reasonably sit in such a holding pattern, we must plan for the potential future. Culture will undoubtedly shift from the past we’ve just left behind in more ways than we can imagine, but here are just four starting points to consider. Businesses that plan for these changes are the ones most likely to emerge faster, stronger and healthier.


The coronavirus pandemic has already changed the way we do business. But what will its lasting effects be? Initiative’s Mazher Abidi looks to the future

TRUST It was reasonable to think we’d reached peak distrust in 2019, and that the tide would slowly turn towards a more truthful and trusting society with new structures in place to curb “bad actors”. In 2020, we find ourselves playing the same game with a new set of rules. Regions where the effects of Covid-19 are exponentially worse than in the Middle East are trying to reassure the public that matters are in hand, but empty supermarket shelves tell us that when it matters, people trust their instincts first. In our industry, we can vouch for this first hand. Trust in the messages we deliver and the mediums we work with was already at an all-time low so it’s inevitable we’ll have to work harder than most to earn that trust back. Brands will have to double down to deliver on their promises, while media will have to find more innovative ways to get messages to cut through to a public whose skepticism is finding new peaks. CONSUMER BEHAVIOUR While spikes in hand sanitiser demand are likely to be an outlier rather than a long-term trend, it’s worth considering how our wider purchasing habits may change on the other side of Covid-19. As much as what we buy, it’s time to think once again about how we buy. There’s a strong recommendation to switch from cash that changes hands several times a day to relatively more hygienic forms of payment such as contactless and mobile wallets. Meanwhile, online stores are picking up the slack from malls and other brick-and-mortar destinations where footfall is dropping. In that context, could this be the tipping point we’ve been waiting for when it comes to e-commerce adoption and growth in the region? In almost every instance where the Middle East adopts trends later than the rest of world, we generally grow faster. A recent Google/Bain report into e-commerce put the share of online sales in the GCC at 3 per cent of all retail, with low trust and a

MAZHER ABIDI is strategy director at Initiative



preference for cash on delivery listed as key barriers. This is compared with penetration rates of 15.6 per cent in the UK, 12.3 per cent in the US and 23 per cent in China (including consumer-toconsumer sales). Even at predicted growth of 25 per cent for the region, it will take us a while to catch up to those figures; but if consumer habits change to accelerate that growth, 2020 may be the year we fundamentally shift the way we collectively think about advertising and selling goods and services to fall even closer in line with developed online markets. BRANDS AND SOCIAL CONSCIENCE: No business will be immune from the challenges of the extreme measures we’re having to take in reaction to Covid-19; yet community spirit has a habit of shining through in times like these, and it’s heartening to see local communities doing all they can to support local businesses through this period, particularly small F&B and service sector businesses that rely on local traffic to survive. At the other end of the spectrum, global organisations have been battling with their own social conscience, and much research has been devoted to understanding the impact of a brand’s stance on social issues to their bottom line. This has been brought into sharp focus by the decision of a number of global businesses such as Apple, Microsoft and Google to send workers home whilst also covering sick pay and time off for self-isolation, and protecting income for contractors. Almost every business will be faced with having to make similar decisions, and if the research has been correct then the choices made today will have a lasting impact on perceptions of tomorrow. It’s crucial brands choose carefully and choose right. THE RESULTS OF THE GREAT WFH EXPERIMENT The internet remains awash with memes that suggest we’re currently engaged in a real-life episode of Black Mirror or some cruel social experiment. What’s undeniably true is that the next few months have the potential to fundamentally change the way jobs and businesses are structured forever. Working from home (WFH) for many represents the ultimate endpoint of flexible working. Volumes of literature have been devoted to how this will be the future of work, and businesses must adapt on a mass scale. It’s never needed to be proven… until now. One of two things will ultimately come out of this. If business productivity remains the same (or even improves), then the advocates of WFH have been proven to be correct, the genie will be out of the bottle and we’ll never return to the business-asusual we once knew. On the other hand, if productivity falls too far, perhaps it will be the gig economy that gets forced to re-evaluate its working models, faced with the new reality it spent so long warning the rest of us about. These and the many other questions that the current world order have thrown up offer opposing choices and polarise opinions. Yet much like the variety of advice we’re being given to get through this period, we’ll know who was right fairly soon. Until we do, the hope is that we all stay safe until we return to (normal) work, fit to face challenges with the energy, enthusiasm and optimism that our industry has always been known for.


March 22, 2020

THE OPPORTUNITIES OF CONNECTED TV as their source of video content. Putting your business in front of this highpurchase-power generation is essential for success. For this reason, progressive marketers have drifted from TV and digital plans to integrated CTV strategies to gain continuous incremental reach.

Reach MENA’s Adel Saadi presents an overview of smart TV advertising


onnected TV (CTV) is a rising star within the marketing community, and rightly so. Audience migration from linear television to smart TVs and devices is strong and still growing. Furthermore, advertising on these devices blends the efficiency and analytics of digital advertising with the effectiveness of traditional TV. The number of smart TVs and OTT (over-the-top) devices in households globally exceeded 1 billion in 2019. In the UK alone, eMarketer suggests there will be 38 million CTV users by 2023 (that’s 56 per cent of the population). The industry is poised to reach $332.52bn in 2025. Also, CTV gives brands access to video marketing opportunities in a relatively untapped space at a lower cost than traditional TV advertising. Given all those impressive stats it’s fair to say that if CTV isn’t part of your media plans, then you’re overlooking a large audience and some serious revenue.

Adel Saadi is senior client partner, Reach MENA


WHAT THE TERMINOLOGY MEANS Connected TV (CTV) refers to TVs or devices connected to the internet. Under the umbrella of CTV is smart TV, an evolution of linear TV with an active broadband connection. OTT (over-the-top) media services can be accessed through your Smart TV and give you TV-like content over the internet (for example, Netflix and Shahid).

REACHING THE MILLENNIAL GENERATION Millennials are top of the hit list for brands, due to their high disposable income. When it comes to television habits, millennials don’t have a nostalgic connection to TV like older generations do. In fact, more than 65 per cent of millennial homes only use connected TV

ADVERTISING ON SMART TV Adverts on smart TVs appear on the high-traffic home strip as either video or static images. Viewers see these ads as they navigate between streaming apps or when they want to change input (from TV to Du, Etisalat, Xbox, etc.). Research has shown that savvy audiences prefer ad-free subscription services and use adblockers; this platform bypasses these hurdles, yet stays non-intrusive, making it a soughtafter space for many verticals including automobiles, entertainment and food and beverage. A continuing challenge with broadcast TV is the failure to drive lower-funnel actions. With this ad format, marketers can use various interactive options within the unit to turn the TV into a performance machine. The three most common ad interactions are click-to-launch-a-



Advanced TV





Traditional TV





Desktop rich media





Mobile rich media





In-stream video





website, click-to-launch-a-smart-TV-app and click-to-play-a-video. All smart TV ad formats benefit from the lean-back environment of TV viewing. Audiences are likely to spend longer interacting with brands, (1 minute on smart TVs, comparedwith 14 seconds on desktop, and 19 seconds on mobile). Driving viewers to make the initial click requires businesses to think creatively. For example, consider a tie-in with popular programming. Viewers are used to watching cinematic content, and as your ad will feature on a large screen, in high-definition and with surround sound, creativity and quality is key. OTHER BENEFITS OF SMART TV ADVERTISING There is no denying the potential of smart TV. Uniting digital capabilities with the ad recall of TV means your spend will make an impact. A Nielson report has found there was 50 per cent ad recognition on smart TV, compared with 39 per cent on desktop and 35 per cent on smartphones. Other research by professor Karen Nelson-Field of the University of Adelaide showed that TV commanded twice the active viewing of YouTube. It also commanded 15 times the active viewing of Facebook. The big plus of smart TV for performance-oriented advertisers is that the ads provide an opportunity to measure results. Insights available include viewability, completion rate, click-through rate, engagement, exact unique viewers and cost per view. In 2017 digital ad spending might have overtaken TV ad spending, but TV remains the most significant reach vehicle out there. Smart TVs and OTTs are the new way people are accessing programming, and this is a trend that has no reason to cease in popularity. In 2018, 70 per cent of TVs sold globally were smart TVs In 2017, Google announced that CTV was its fastest-growing device segment on YouTube – and globally provided more than 100 million hours of viewing. Today, CTV can deliver ads through in-stream and out-stream to an audience who, so far, are approving of the commercials and more likely to click than on any other digital format.

March 22, 2020

HOW AI MAKES D US MORE HUMAN By working handin-hand with AI, we can achieve a state of ‘humanistic intelligence’, drawing on the best capabilities of both machines and people, writes UM’s Melissa Moubarak

ata. If you’re like 68 per cent of marketers (according to McKinsey), this simple, short word probably just sent a chill down your spine . That’s because while 78 per cent of marketers profess the importance of data in improving their business and fuelling their decision making, the majority are struggling. Facing a deluge of data points, with no guidance on how to structure, analyse or make sense of it. Then there are those who dread the day data will power enough artificial intelligence (AI) for robots to take over our jobs. They bemoan the future of a creative industry already hijacked by number crunchers and sapped of its rightbrained character. But here’s an unpopular opinion: becoming more left-brained can actually make you a better marketer. You see, problem solving requires two steps. First, gathering all the information together and breaking it apart into bits and pieces for analysis. Then, putting it all back together into a recommended solution. In today’s data-heavy world, sifting through all the noise in a methodical

and robust way is a waste of time and practically impossible for humans. That’s where AI can deliver potent use cases. Powered by the right data, AI is incredible at collecting information related to a problem, then dissecting that into manageable pieces for analysis. It’s how you would be able to capture binge watching habits of Netflix users and cluster them by time of day and type of show. It’s how you would cluster fast-food ordering behaviour based on the immense datasets from food delivery apps, call centres and third-party providers. Sure, we’ve done quite well in marketing before all of that data. But shying away from it today, through a lack of knowledge or just denial, would be to foolishly toss away a wealth of insight. Insight, however, is where AI fails. The second step of problem solving, putting nuggets of information back together to arrive to a solution, is where AI stumbles. The problem is, AI has no moral compass, empathy, understanding or flexibility. It can do what it’s told, but cannot comprehend whether it’s the right thing to do. It will spew out results based on mathematical models with no regard to ethics, social context or fair judgement. It’s why AI has been plagued with racial bias issues in recruitment, or incorrect diagnoses for cancer patients. Luckily, there’s another, far more dominant tool for the task of taking pieces of imperfect data and connecting them together into a meaningful solution: the human brain. Human creativity has brought us this far, and human creativity will take us even further. But this time we have a powerful ally. If we embrace data and AI to conduct complex analysis tasks, then use human intelligence


to synthesise that analysis into meaningful conclusions, we will have achieved a symbiotic relationship between man and machine called humanistic intelligence. We’re not talking just yet about becoming humanoid cyborgs fitted with computer chips as Elon Musk’s Neuralink brain implants promise. Or even bionic eyes like Steve Mann’s EyeTap. Still, we need to evolve the profile of a typical marketer today if we are to achieve humanistic intelligence. This mainly revolves around upskilling marketers on data literacy. It revolves around developing a new breed of experts with a hyperactive right brain to think creatively about problems, and a fired-up left brain to unlock the potential of data for better decision making. By becoming more data literate, marketers could start spotting trends. AI could highlight key peaks that deserve further analysis, and the marketers would spend their time asking the important question: Why? Marketers can learn to read in the data truly incredible stories about human behaviour, igniting more creative work. Become data-literate by learning the skills to study data sets, analyse their trends, spot their outliers and visualise their patterns. You will feel so much more comfortable in a world where we are surrounded by it and it will empower you like never before. Working with AI to crunch the numbers allows us the space to do what humans do best: think. Think critically, strategically and (most humanly) empathetically. That’s when we will reach the ultimate state of humanistic intelligence.

Melissa Moubarak is strategy and data director at UM MENA


March 22, 2020

VALUE JUDGEMENTS Virtue’s Firas Sleem explains why managing and measuring brand reputation matters in 2020


onsumers are choosing every product from cars to burgers based on corporate values. Understanding an array of customer personas can guide tactics for winning and keeping them. Studies have long shown that your conviction to do good will lead customers to spend more, recommend you more and remain loyal. Yet they seldom describe the mechanisms that brand managers can use to benchmark and track reputation. A recent global study found that 62 per cent of consumers want companies to take a stand on pressing issues such as immigration, data privacy and climate change. In the same study, nearly half of consumers (48 per cent) would publicly complain about their disappointment with a company whose words or actions are misaligned with their personal values, and one-fifth of consumers (21 per cent) said they’d abandon that brand out of frustration and would never return. Reputation is, by definition, opinions held. Like beauty, it is subjective, mercurial and challenging to categorise. The key to the art of measuring reputation is knowing your stakeholders – ideally, every single member of your audience. In 2020, having an outstanding reputation – both online and offline – is even more imperative as competition becomes tougher. Managing an organisation’s reputation gives businesses the competitive edge as well as the confidence to carve a niche in their industries and work towards becoming leaders. This puts brand reputation management at the heart of building a genuine public corporate persona, an image that is based on a foundation of customer relations nurtured from the get-go. Reputation management requires an allencompassing approach. A good brand manager knows how to maximise key platforms to effectively convey a carefully crafted and appealing message to stakeholders. The objective is not just to bring the message out there but, more importantly, to influence or shape public views about the entity as well.


It requires great and consistent efforts to build and sustain an unassailable reputation. From offering top-notch products and services to establishing an emotional connection with your target market, reputation management is all about relationships between the brand and its stakeholders, partners and the wider community. The traditional way of measuring a brand’s reputation is finding out what its target audience is saying about it – both good and bad – to understand the ever-changing sentiments of the public. Scouring each platform, including checking your social media notifications, reading reviews and listening to views and opinions, is part and parcel of your work as a brand manager. Being proactive in knowing the public’s sentiments allows you to act immediately on their concerns to prevent the issues from spiralling out of control. It also enables you to contain any negative feedback, effectively nipping it in the bud. While acting on the concern, rather than being defensive, it is important to let the other party know that their suggestions and ideas are valued and appreciated. One of the secrets to having a good reputation is knowing how to handle unflattering feedback. Listening to the public perception of your brand gives you insights as well into what they find interesting and worth applauding. You can keep track of and record how the public perception of your brand is being affected by every success story you communicate. By doing so, you can effectively design your next campaigns to make them more powerful and impactful. Emphasising positive reviews also helps in drowning out the negative voices that inevitably crop up. Further, reputation management entails monitoring your market competitors to keep you on your toes at all times. It will prevent you from being caught off-guard. Having inside knowledge of what is happening within the industry you are operating in is also an advantage that lets you strategise more effectively. Other traditional methods of reputation management include word-of-mouth, direct and consistent communication with the media, partners and stakeholders, and the examination of all brand-related keywords across channels. There are cutting-edge tools and mechanisms specifically designed to keep track and monitor the reputation of your brand. We have automated media monitoring tools that are extremely efficient

in measuring prevailing opinions. Research, surveys and studies based on the best industry practices are data-driven tools that are useful in managing an entity’s public image. Technology-driven software is also highly effective, especially in catching and handling negative comments. For better management, many companies, especially multinationals, outsource this service to an agency that is more experienced in dealing with the public. The agency is more adept at engaging with the target audience by delivering the message in a timely fashion using the most effective channels. Reputation management all boils down to building clear communication with everyone – internally or externally – and setting the right practical expectations. Maintaining an outstanding reputation goes beyond delivering high-quality products and services, but it is also about showcasing what makes your brand unique, living up to your commitment and promises, and providing the best customer experience. It is a continuing process. You check, analyse and tweak your strategy now and then according to the prevailing demands and needs. In the end, reputation management is an effort worth investing in.

By Firas Sleem is CEO, Virtue PR & Marketing Communications


March 22, 2020


Mountain view leads the happiness movement through


Mountain View is a leading Egyptian real estate company whose vision and mission have always centred on “developing the land and spreading happiness among those around us”. It is a partner of the Delivering Happiness (DH) organisation – a US-based coaching and consultancy firm that has worked with Google, Facebook and Dubai Government among others – and the official DH parent in Egypt. As well as applying DH principles to its own headquarters, Mountain View factored DH principles into its new international business hub Heartwork. With Cairo’s urban sprawl and economic growth, corporations are looking to expand and upgrade in New Cairo’s commercial zones and new office parks, the market traditionally competes over per-meter prices and location. As more and more millennials and generation Z enter the workforce, the traditional fancy yet cold work places are becoming out of touch with the new world.


The challenge was to develop a new office business park with a unique proposition that differentiates Heartwork from the rest of the market while still appealing to the business community that is used to the traditional type of office spaces.


The preparation involved workshops with Delivering Happiness and the global master planner, CRTKL. The concept was tested with local partners and real estate brokers, revealing mixed reactions that were skeptical at times and encouraging at others.

A key insight was in the dominant frustration among hundreds of thousands of unhappy employees across different white collar sectors in Egypt. Mountain View’s strategy for launching Heartwork depended on two key steps: The first step was to significantly promote Mountain View’s HQ and show the happy work environment it has developed for its employees; which eventually led to step two which was to turn thousands of unhappy employees into agents promoting Mountain View Happy work environment to lay the ground for introducing Heartwork.


Aiming to launch Heartwork with its innovative positioning, the 4 phased campaign was strategically designed to create a communication build up that would lead to triggering the need for happy workplaces.

Phase 1: Generic Hype about Happiness in the workplace

Create unbranded native conversation and memes using “happiness at work” related topics on the top 4 radio channels, and on high fan base sarcasm pages was brilliant. This pressed on the key pain points among white collars and paved the ground for branded content.

Phase 2: Scientific Approach to Happiness

The scientific aspects of happiness were introduced in the second phase through hosting & organizing “Future Office Summit” with global speakers attended by HR leaders, as well as holding interviews for Mountain View experts over the radio explaining the great innovation.

Phase 3: Branded Content Associating Mountain View to Happiness

After the first 2 phases the need for happy workplaces was triggered and dramatized laying the ground for Mountain View to lead the Happiness movement by introducing its happy HQ. Mountain View opened its new HQ to museum-like tours; picking up a prank with a famous radio presenter and social media influencer, Marwan Younes, Mountain View invited him over to experience all the happiness aspects in its HQ. This created a massive association between Mountain View and happy workplaces.

Phase 4: Heartwork Launch

The buzz created coincided with launching an iconic outdoor campaign with more than 300 faces in one location portraying the young brand identity of Heartwork, while print ads and advertorials ran in business magazines. The digital assets of Heartwork were launched along with a highly targeted strong lead generation campaign. A big launch event for commercial real estate brokers was held to launch the project.


Heartwork’s first phase sold out in 24 hours, while Mountain View received more than 60 requests from local and international firms for happiness consultancy. Heartwork’s social channels received more than 15.1 million views and 330,000 interactions. There was a ripple effect as other companies and content creators began discussing happiness and taking initiatives. And those ripples have spread internationally; Mountain View has since been invited to the biggest international real estate conferences including MIPIM in Cannes and IFMA in Amsterdam to talk about happiness in the workspace.

CHECK OUT THE CAMPAIGN DIRECTORY Contact for more details.

January 26, 2020

KNOW YOUR PLATFORM GUIDE 2020 Campaign introduces the new directory of what brands and marketers need to know about the leading social platforms


elcome to the first issue of Campaign’s Know Your Platform Guide. Social media plays a central part in marketing and communications, and we felt the time was ripe to take advantage of an unscheduled gap in our regular programming to produce a directory of the key players in this space. We have focused on what the region’s – and the world’s – leading platforms can do for your and your clients’ brands. It turns out ‘platform’ can be quite a tricky thing to define. By and large we have listed platforms that have a social aspect and don’t produce their own content but act as a showcase or message board for what others produce, letting the rest of the world watch, listen and read the work of amateurs, professionals, brands and more. But there is plenty of variation among the platforms. Anghami is a long way from Twitter, for example. And although these platforms may all jostle for advertising spend, few of them are direct competitors. So don’t look at the pages ahead as a comparison per se, but more as a field guide to what is out there and what they can do for you.

You are sure to know all the platforms we list, so there are no surprises there. But we hope this guide can offer some insight into aspects such as reach, KPIs and business models, and perhaps tell you more about the platforms’ users. We have also asked the platforms which tools they have recently introduced, and what features to look out for in the coming months. And we have interspersed the platform listings with some case studies. These serve to show how leading brands and agencies have used the tools the platforms make available to all of us, and what they have built with those tools. We hope the case studies spark discussion and inspiration. Do you wish you’d thought of that? Or would you have done it differently? How could that work for your brand or your client? This issue was originally in the Campaign editorial calendar as our post-Lynx round-up of who won what. That has been pushed back, but we are still able to celebrate good work here. When the Lynx returns, these platforms will be key components of plenty of winning campaigns. Their advanced features combined with imaginative creativity from agencies and trailblazing bravery from clients is a winning combination.



March 22, 2020

WHAT DO PEOPLE KNOW YOU AS? People come to us to feel good throughout their day.


BIGGEST MISCONCEPTION ABOUT THE PLATFORM That we provide Arabic content only. WHAT CAN YOU DO BEST FOR BRANDS? We help brands create stories that speak to the heart, and then roll them out efficiently. We do this using music, data and tech.

Elie Habib Co founder, chairman

WHAT ARE THE KPIS BRANDS LOOK FOR ON YOUR PLATFORM? Purchase intent, ad recall, brand love

Founded 2012 Vice-president, GCC Elie Abou Saleh Global HQ Beirut Regional HQ Dubai Number of users worldwide 21 million yearly active users in 2019 DESCRIPTION Anghami is the leading music streaming service in the Middle East, giving users access to a wide variety of Arabic and international songs, ready-made playlists for every mood and a diverse collection of podcasts. WHAT IS THE PRIMARY MEDIA ON YOUR PLATFORM? Audio and Music (songs, playlists) DISTRIBUTION OF USERS Levant: 21.29 per cent North Africa: 37 per cent GCC: 33.33 per cent Rest of world: 8.41 per cent USER DEMOGRAPHICS Gen Z 34 per cent Gen Y 52 per cent Gen X 14 per cent 50 per cent have kids 87 per cent work 45 per cent are female 71 per cent are into technology (62.2 per cent have at least three devices) 64 per cent are into sports (gym at least once a week) 60 per cent are into travel (half of whom travel at least twice a year) 57 per cent are into gaming 41 per cent are into fashion & beauty (80 per cent like to stand out from the crowd)

WHAT NEW FEATURES FOR MARKETERS HAVE YOU LAUNCHED IN THE LAST YEAR? Personalised audio ads allowing customisation to people in real time by weather, traffic, date and, most importantly, names. With the tech built in-house, we’ve managed to scale this across markets. WHAT FEATURES CAN WE LOOK FORWARD TO IN THE NEXT YEAR? We believe in the power of audio as a medium. It scores high on attentiveness. We’re currently building the tools to allow performance-driven campaigns (leads and installs) on the platform through audio. We’re also testing footfall attribution tools with automotive brands. DO YOU HAVE ANYTHING SPECIAL PLANNED FOR RAMADAN? In -app Fawazir, dedicated hymns, podcasts on wellbeing and TV series soundtracks.

Edy Maroun Co-founder, CEO

Elie Abou Saleh Vice-president, GCC

Dany Doueik COO


WHAT’S YOUR FAVOURITE BRAND CAMPAIGN ON YOUR PLATFORM? OMO wanted to change the way they connected with audiences in Morocco. We used our dynamic audio ad tool to deliver 558 different ad variations personalised based on the users’ names, time of day and day of week. The campaign led to a 45 per cent uplift in ad recall, and a 30 per cent uplift in favourability. Sales also increased by 19.8 per cent.


Brands need to value more the power of storytelling. It feels like we’re too focused on rolling a message out to people efficiently that we’re forgetting to pause and ask what message matters, at a specific time throughout the day. The industry is fighting over attention span, while we’re offering brands a one-to-one engagement with our people.


March 22, 2020

From audio to showroom Anghami worked with Choueiri Group to give an automotive brand’s models different soundtracks and drive consideration and showroom footfall Credits: Anghami’s creative ad studio; DMS




We complemented this content association approach with a strong media strategy on Anghami, using audio ads to really bring to life the sound of the car. Looking at our data and audience psychographics, we created audience segments that fitted each car model. Audio ads were also tailored accordingly to provide the automotive brand with a consistent tone of voice.

The end goal was to build a higher affinity with a medium- to high-end automotive brand, while redirecting people to the showroom for test drives and car purchases. We did this by offering users a soothing driving experience through music, while also using the different target audiences on the platform to promote different car models at specific times throughout the day. Driving is more than just an activity, it also has a lot to do with the way people feel. In fact, 70 per cent of Anghami users who drive care about how they feel when they are driving. With this in mind, we wanted to create a strategy that touched on their natural preferences on Anghami - listening to music.

We had multiple touchpoints on Anghami. We created a Brand Page, which acted as a hub for the brand sounds. Within these we placed playlists specifically curated for people driving. For example, Smooth Driving by the client’s.


The campaign capitalised on Anghami’s reach, content, data and tech. With

Anghami’s scale across the region, the automotive brand was able to offer users a scalable sound experience. Using our depth of data, better targeting on audio ads resonated well with users, resulting in a 29 per cent increase in awareness, 125 per cent in ad recall and 16 per cent in consideration. Using our tech infrastructure and the resources from the data team of our sales partners Choueiri Group, along with two different third-party vendors, we used our location data to map out our first footfall-tracking model to help validate the campaign’s direct results. We were able to drive about 200 Anghami users to the automotive brand’s showrooms in Saudi Arabia for less than $250 a visit, thus driving an incremental visit uplift of 15 per cent.

“Using our depth of data, better targeting on audio ads resonated well with users, resulting in a 29 per cent increase in awareness, 125 per cent in ad recall and 16 per cent in consideration.”



March 22, 2020


Founded 2004 Parent company Facebook Inc. Regional offices were opened 2012 Managing director, MENA Ramez Shehadi Global HQ Menlo Park, California Regional HQ Dubai Number of users worldwide 2.9 billion people use Facebook Inc. platforms

Ramez Shehadi Managing director for Middle East and North Africa

every month (Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp or Messenger)

Number of users regionally In MENA, 196 million people access Facebook on mobile every month, and 128 million every day

DESCRIPTION We build technologies to give people the power to connect with friends and family, find communities and grow businesses. WHAT IS THE PRIMARY MEDIA ON YOUR PLATFORM? Video, pictures

Fares Akkad Director of media partnerships for growth markets (APAC, LATAM, MEA), news

WHAT DO PEOPLE BEST KNOW YOU AS? A social networking website where users can post comments, share photographs and post links to news or other interesting content on the web, chat live and watch short-form video. BIGGEST MISCONCEPTION ABOUT THE PLATFORM? Facebook’s business model. Facebook is for everyone all over the world; that’s why it is free to use. Our business model puts people first. We make money in the same way newspapers and TV stations have been doing for decades: we charge advertisers to show people ads that are relevant. WHAT CAN YOU DO BEST FOR BRANDS? Facebook offers advertising solutions for every level of expertise. Brands can create and run campaigns using simple self-service tools and track their performance with easy-to-read reports.

Weera Saad Director of Creative Shop for Middle East and Africa

WHAT ARE THE KPIS BRANDS LOOK FOR ON YOUR PLATFORM? Incremental sales, app installs, purchase, brand awareness, message delivery, purchase intent improvement WHAT NEW FEATURES FOR MARKETERS HAVE YOU LAUNCHED IN THE LAST YEAR? We are focused on giving advertisers more transparency and sophisticated tools to suit their brand, which is why we announced new strides in our brand safety controls. We also made it easier for brands to scale more personalised ad experiences by rolling out new features that use machine learning to automatically deliver more tailored ad experiences to each person.

Terry Kane Marketing director for Middle East and Africa

March 22, 2020

Parent company Google Founded 1998 Global HQ Mountain View, California

THE PLATFORM FOR? An ad campaign named ‘Ask Google’, designed to raise awareness about the helpfulness of Google search in a local/ relevant context.

DESCRIPTION Google’s mission is to organise the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.

WHAT ARE THE KPIS BRANDS LOOK FOR ON YOUR PLATFORM? Many KPIs depending on each brand’s objectives, including impressions, CTR, conversion rate, etc.

WHAT IS THE PRIMARY MEDIA ON YOUR PLATFORM? All media: search queries are performed with text, images, video and more. Google’s ad platforms and services help advertisers connect with people based on what they want (intent), what matters to them (identity) and what they’ll find useful (context) at any moment. WHAT DO PEOPLE KNOW YOU AS? Search provides relevant and helpful results for people around the world. BIGGEST MISCONCEPTION ABOUT THE PLATFORM There is a misconception that the majority of users in MENA search in English. In fact, most users in MENA search for information in Arabic and prefer to communicate in the same language. WHAT CAN YOU DO BEST FOR BRANDS? Help advertisers and businesses drive awareness and conversions for their products and services. WHAT SOCIAL MEDIA STORY DO PEOPLE IN THE REGION BEST KNOW

WHAT FEATURES FOR MARKETERS HAVE YOU LAUNCHED RECENTLY? Posts on Google: This feature allows verified public figures, teams, TV shows, musicians and organisations to post directly on Search, keeping people up to date with the latest information. Google Trends: Marketers can use this site, which is based on Google Search results, to understand what is top-ofmind and how people are searching for certain topics or events. Shopping ads: Shopping ads include

rich product information such as product image and price. Advertisers can use these visual ads to reach people who are already searching for products, so they are more likely to take action. WHAT FEATURES CAN WE LOOK FORWARD TO IN THE NEXT YEAR? Google will continue to bring the latest AI innovation to improve language understanding in Search, making results more relevant and helpful for people around the world. In the future, Google Assistant will not only understand and speak Arabic better, but will be able to do further third-party actions on your device. DO YOU HAVE ANYTHING SPECIAL PLANNED FOR RAMADAN? Google is planning to launch some product features designed to help people experience more of Ramadan.


Every search query is unique with its own intent and signals. Understanding context and being there at the right time with the right message requires brands to take advantage of the latest machine-learning-based Search automation tools so they are most helpful in driving actions on their websites or apps.



March 22, 2020


Ramez Shehadi

Founded 2010 Parent company Facebook Inc. Regional offices opened 2012 Managing director, MENA (Facebook) Ramez Shehadi Global HQ Menlo Park, California Regional HQ Dubai Number of users worldwide 2.9 billion people using Facebook Inc. platforms every month (Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp or Messenger) DESCRIPTION Instagram is about bringing you closer to the people and things you love. We want Instagram to be a place where people can be inspired every day. We foster a safe and inclusive community where people can express themselves, feel closer to anyone they care about and turn a passion into a living. WHAT IS THE PRIMARY MEDIA ON YOUR PLATFORM? Photos and videos

Managing director for Middle East and North Africa

Fares Akkad Director of media partnerships for growth markets (APAC, LATAM, MEA), news

WHAT DO PEOPLE BEST KNOW YOU AS? Instagram is an expression platform; it is where people come to express themselves authentically, easily, and creatively through photos and videos. BIGGEST MISCONCEPTION ABOUT THE PLATFORM? A wide misconception is that Instagram is a place where people feel pressure to be perfect. While social comparison is something that happens both online and offline, we don’t want Instagram to be a competition. It is a place where people can come to express themselves and have a voice. We want people to feel good about the time they spend on Instagram. We want everyone to use it to have a positive and meaningful experience. WHAT CAN YOU DO BEST FOR BRANDS? We want to help organisations of all sizes make growing their businesses easier. We want to make it more convenient for people to buy, easier for businesses to sell and more secure for everyone. Instagram offers advertising solutions for every level of expertise. Brands can create and run campaigns using simple self-service tools and track their performance with easy-to-read reports.

Weera Saad Director of Creative Shop for Middle East and Africa

WHAT ARE THE KPIS BRANDS LOOK FOR ON YOUR PLATFORM? Incremental sales, app installs, purchase, brand awareness, message delivery, purchase intent improvement WHAT NEW FEATURES FOR MARKETERS HAVE YOU LAUNCHED IN THE LAST YEAR? We are focused on giving advertisers more transparency and sophisticated tools to suit their brand, which is why we announced new strides in our brand safety controls. We also made it easier for brands to scale more personalised ad experiences by rolling out new features that use machine learning to automatically deliver more tailored ad experiences to each person.

Terry Kane Marketing director for Middle East and Africa

March 22, 2020

brand-building to sales, it offers a complete ad experience within the safest and most trusted environment.

Founded 2003 Parent company Microsoft Regional offices opened 2012 Head of LinkedIn marketing solutions MENA Ziad Rahhal Global HQ Sunnyvale, California Regional HQ Dubai Number of users worldwide More than 675 millions across 200 countries

Regional users More than 33 million

in the MENA region; more than 4 million in the UAE DESCRIPTION LinkedIn connects the world’s professionals to make them more productive and successful, and transforms the ways companies hire, market and sell. Our vision is to create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce through the ongoing development of the world’s first Economic Graph. PRIMARY MEDIA ON THE PLATFORM Sponsored content delivered natively in the feed and featuring video or multiple images. USER DEMOGRAPHIC Our members are professionals looking to connect, develop and find opportunities. We are seeing that they are spending more and more time on the platform (sessions increased 25 per cent year-on-year as engagement reached record levels). WHAT DO PEOPLE BEST KNOW YOU AS? The world’s largest professional network and the safest and most trusted social platform, where members consume and share professional content. WHAT IS THE BIGGEST MISCONCEPTION ABOUT THE PLATFORM? That it’s purely a job and B2B platform. In reality it is a platform where members consume professional and relevant content from their industry and interests, to learn and upgrade their skills. REGIONAL INFLUENCERS ON LINKEDIN HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, HH Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Justin Trudeau, Ray Dalio, Jamie Dimon

WHAT EVENT DO PEOPLE IN THE REGION BEST KNOW LINKEDIN FOR? The LinkedIn Marketing Awards, recognising the best B2B campaigns; and The LinkedIn Talent Awards, recognising the best employer brands and recruitment strategy in the region


WHAT ARE THE KPIS BRANDS LOOK FOR ON YOUR PLATFORM? Beyond the usual metrics (CPM, CPC, etc.) and engagement rates, brands are looking for full-funnel marketing approach, consolidating awareness and consideration (reach, SOV, brand uplift, websites analytics) with pure performance through high relevance and quality of leads. Our customers also love our unique reporting capabilities in terms of industry, job position, education level, etc. WHAT NEW FEATURES FOR MARKETERS HAVE YOU LAUNCHED IN THE LAST YEAR? New LinkedIn Pages, featuring a better mobile experience, advanced analytics, associated hashtags and tech-partner integration. LinkedIn Live Streaming allows brands and members to stream live events, interviews, demos, launches, etc. ObjectivesBased Advertising allows brands to input main marketing funnel objectives to achieve better ROI WHAT NEW FEATURES CAN WE LOOK FORWARD TO IN THE NEXT YEAR?  Conversion Ads will allow brands to use the built-in messaging functionality of LinkedIn with guided replies and multiple calls to action. And engagement re-targeting will allow brands to build a tailored ad experience based on actions members take with your content. LEADERSHIP PANEL


I will have to be slightly biased to the region for this one. My favorite ones are home-grown, and a testament to the incredible talent we have in the industry, across the eco-system: Ford MEA is one of the best brands on LinkedIn. They’ve built a comprehensive communication strategy for their fleet business expressed in organic content and brand campaigns as well as acquisition and lead generation activity. They’re not afraid to inject humour into their content and believe in the value of brand-building to sustain a healthy sales strategy. They have rightly identified a good mix between emotional and rational content, and because of that, they stand out.


Diana Daou Head of client solutions management MENA

I still see transactional content as advertisers prioritise shorter-term leadgeneration objectives at the expense of brand building. Brands should have an always-on presence on their platforms of choice, and offer something to their audiences (white papers, case studies, insights). Brands that are winning give as much as they take.


REGIONAL BRANDS ON LINKEDIN IBM, Mercedes, Ford, Expo2020, Emirates NBD WHAT CAN YOU DO BEST FOR BRANDS?  We allow both B2B and high-endconsideration B2C brands to implement a full-funnel marketing strategy in a brand-safe environment. From awareness to consideration and conversion, from


Nicolas Roux Head of agencies & channels sales MENA

LinkedIn works best when content is balanced between acquisition and brand, and between emotional and rational content. I would love to see more courage when communicating on LinkedIn, striking that balance allows you to build your brand and create an emotional connection with the buyers of tomorrow. We are business-to-human before being B2C or B2B.


March 22, 2020

Snapchat allows brands in the region to tap into a large and highly engaged audience. During Ramadan 2019, GCC Snapchatters spent more than 1 hour every day on Snapchat (more than double the global average). Engagement paired with innovative and effective ad formats enables brands to achieve their objectives.

Founded 2011 Parent company Snap Inc. Regional offices opened 2016 Regional director Hussein Freijeh Global HQ Santa Monica, California Regional HQ Dubai Global users 218 million a day Regional users MENA: 34 million unique users/ month; KSA: More than 15 million; UAE: More than 1.8 million; Iraq: More than 6 million; Turkey: More than 6 million; Kuwait: More than 1.5 million; Oman: More than 700,000 DESCRIPTION Snap Inc. is a camera company. We believe that reinventing the camera represents our greatest opportunity to improve the way people live and communicate. We contribute to human progress by empowering people to express themselves, live in the moment, learn about the world and have fun together. PRIMARY MEDIA ON THE PLATFORM Full-screen, sound-on, vertical video, with AR Lenses and Filters. USER DEMOGRAPHICS With more than 15 million users in Saudi Arabia, Snapchat reaches 90 per cent of 13-34 year olds. In the UAE, we reach more than 60 per cent of 13-24 year olds and our footprint is prominent amongst core advertising audiences, reaching more than one in three 18-34 year olds. WHAT DO PEOPLE BEST KNOW YOU AS? From a communications perspective, we are known for creating products that have become standards across mobile communication and content including vertical video and Stories. We pioneered ephemeral messages have made privacy a core product principle of Snapchat. From a creative perspective, we are known for our Augmented Reality (AR) innovation. WHAT IS THE BIGGEST MISCONCEPTION ABOUT THE PLATFORM? That AR is only used for “fun”. WHAT CAN YOU DO BEST FOR BRANDS?

WHAT FEATURES FOR MARKETERS HAVE YOU LAUNCHED IN THE LAST YEAR? Lenses in Auction – you can easily buy lenses in a biddable environment similar to Snap Ads. You can create and run AR Lenses for any of your brands in any country available in Ads Manager via Auction. Unskippable Video – six second commercials running alongside high-quality publisher content. New optimisation tools – different goalbased bidding tools to optimise campaigns against app opens, app purchases, app repurchases and new pixel capabilities. Swipe Up to Call or Text – a feature that enables users to swipe up and directly call or text a business. WHAT NEW FEATURES CAN WE LOOK FORWARD TO IN THE NEXT YEAR? Dynamic Ads – will be launched in MENA to help advertisers get further return on advertising spend out of Snapchat, save time in campaign set-up, improve optimisations and decrease resources required to run always-on campaigns focused on prospecting and remarketing.


Hussein Freijeh Regional director, MENA

Jake Thomas Business lead, MENA

Farimah Moeini Business lead, MENA

Takeover products – prototyping new ad products that will help brands stand out even more on Snapchat during key brand moments. Lens Web Builder – the industry’s first web-based AR Lens ad production tool.

Abdullah AlHammadi Business lead, MENA



One of my favourite campaigns is the recent collaboration with Saudi Arabia’s Royal Commission for AlUla to bring the UNESCO Heritage Site Qasr Al-Farid to life. It showcased work from three artists using AR via Snapchat’s first MENA Landmarker. This campaign was a big success locally, regionally and globally.


Historically advertisers were approaching us for just one big idea and now they are more focused on a 360-degree integrated approach. We’ve seen a shift away from brands purely briefing us for tentpole AR Lens activations, and we are now seeing nearly all of our clients also leverage the power of video on the platform to deliver full-funnel, multi-product campaigns.


Snapchat is a partner that can add value and deliver against upper and lower funnel goals throughout an entire campaign. Brands should capitalise on our highly engaged audience, our tools and products to maximise ROI impact, tailoring their campaigns for the region in all ad formats through AR and videos. We also advise reassessing the importance of the mobile screen for big, game-changing ideas.


March 22, 2020


NESCAFÉ launches new premium coffee range through Snapchat video and camera


offee at home is a growing category, with more and more people investing in coffee machines and buying ground or roast coffee. NESCAFÉ had to convince these discerning customers that their new premium soluble coffee range functionally deliver on taste and aroma (which they did through video) and emotionally bring to life the idea of indulgence and escape (which they achieved using camera formats).

The solution: an integrated Snapchat campaign leveraging video (Snap Ads) and camera formats (Filter and AR Lens)

The idea was simple: help Snapchatters escape the everyday and enjoy moments of pure indulgence by visiting the Sumatran rainforest or Ugandan safari, and associating this feeling with NESCAFÉ Gold Origins. Leveraging

cutting-edge augmented reality with a double portal Lens was the perfect solution. This was supported with a Filter to help Snapchatters frame moments of coffee pleasure and Snap Ads to drive reach and frequency with pure-play product messages.

The results

Reaching 7.56 million unique Snapchatters2, the campaign delivered exceptional uplifts for brand awareness (+7 percentage points1) and ad awareness (+11 percentage points1), especially amongst those over 35 (+18 percentage points1 and +19 percentage points1 respectively), addressing a common misconception about the platform being only for younger audiences. The AR Lens in particular was a key driver in brand metric uplifts, especially product awareness (+10 percentage point lift in product awareness among people exposed to the Lens1).

+7 pp

+11 pp



Lift in brand awareness1

Lift in ad awareness1

Average playtime2

Share rate2

“Working very closely with our media agency, creative agency and the Snapchat team at an early stage of the campaign planning process ensured that we have a cohesive plan set in place, which includes the proper mix of media assets (such as Snap Ads, Filters and Lenses) that will drive and impact brand metrics. Leveraging the AR aspect through the Lens feature also gave the creative aspect and edge, as it allowed us to really bring the different sensorial experiences of each variant to life.” Tala Abdeen, global digital acceleration team member, Nestlé Middle East


1. Snap Inc. brand lift survey of Saudi Arabia Snapchat uses 25+ year-old, September 7, 2019 – November 9, 2019. Location and age data or subject to limitations. See for details. 1006 respondents. 2. Snap Inc. internal data, September 8, 2019 - December 31, 2019



March 22, 2020

Vamp beats benchmarks with ASUS Zenbook influencer campaign


ASUS Zenbook



Vamp, Instagram, Facebook


ASUS is a global technology brand, known best for its extensive range of personal notebooks, gaming hardware and motherboards. The ASUS ZenBook series was the subject of its newest campaign. ASUS Middle East wanted to boost ZenBook brand engagement and leads using a lifestylefocused campaign. The influencer objective was to create unique and innovative localised content that brought to life the #IncredibleIsNow theme.


This campaign capitalised on two effective marketing techniques – influencers and localised content. Influencers are effective because they have highly engaged audiences who trust their recommendations and know how to use content to capture social users’ attention. 61 per cent of 18- to 34-year-olds have at some point been swayed in their decision making by digital influencers. Localised content is also powerful. Showing recognisable people and landmarks makes content feel more relevant and allows users to quickly connect with it. This is particularly important in a social feed, where an image or video has a millisecond to catch a user’s attention. The combination of the two is persuasive when it comes to showing prospective customers how the product could fit into their lives.


To create a lifestyle campaign, Vamp used its community of influential content creators. They shot photos and videos showcasing the ZenBook amid sweeping shots of cities and urban landscapes in the United Arab Emirates. A total of 30 pieces of content were created, including four videos, over the course of six weeks. The original images and moving pictures were then transformed into photo and video ads, designed to attract attention and drive prospective customers to visit the campaign

“The influencergenerated assets were of such a high-quality, ASUS was able to re-use them on their ZenBook microsite and on OOH.” website. The website invited visitors to vote for their favourite product image in exchange for a chance to win various ASUS prizes. The influencer-generated assets were of such a high-quality, ASUS was able to re-use them on their ZenBook microsite, as well as the main ASUS website and in out-of-home advertising.

THE RESULTS The results exceeding all targeted benchmarks:

Organic campaign reach: 614,410 Likes: 21,860 Comments: 1,229 Engagement rate: 4.22 per cent

Sponsored posts:

Paid social engagement: 26 per cent (57 per cent higher than benchmark) Social account: 17 per cent estimated ad recall lift rate (41 per cent higher than benchmark) Microsite website traffic: 300 per cent higher than ASUS campaign target


Vamp has a closed community of creators. They only accept the very best in terms of content quality, audience authenticity and professionalism. This means the superior content produced is effective in capturing attention in crowded social feeds – and has the potential to be reused elsewhere. Vamp is an Official Marketing Partner of Facebook and Instagram. Trained in best practice and with direct access to data analytics, they are able to advise their clients on the best use of Facebook’s range of ad products, to best suit the client’s needs. Finally, Vamp’s dedicated tech platform streamlines the collaboration process for both client and creator. This meant that 30 pieces of content could be created quickly and easily.


“It was a pleasure to work with Vamp on this campaign for ZenBook. Their team and technology made it a smooth process from start to finish. We were kept updated throughout and it was exciting to see the content their incredible pool of talent was creating. It delivered on two counts: impressive reach through the influencers’ communities, and a collection of authentic assets that were of such a high quality we were able to reuse them in our own channels.” Ahmed Gowda, brand and digital Manager, ASUS Middle East.


The campaign was shortlisted for Best Use of Imagery at the UK Drum Social Buzz Awards.

March 22, 2020

Founded 2006; launched 2008 Launched in MENA 2018  Managing director, MEA Claudius Boller Global HQ Stockholm, Sweden Regional HQ Dubai  Global users More than 124 million subscribers More than 271 million monthly active users DESCRIPTION Spotify is the world’s most popular audio streaming service – giving you access to all of the music that you love anytime, anywhere WHAT IS THE PRIMARY MEDIA ON YOUR PLATFORM? Audio, video and display.  USER DEMOGRAPHICS Digital savvy 16-34 year olds are our core audience, but we have users from all demographics. Music is universal. WHAT DO PEOPLE BEST KNOW YOU AS? Spotify has always been focused on creating the best possible service in the world for music fans and artists alike. With more than 271 million music fans, Spotify has billions of data points, which it uses to help tailor the service for everyone, meaning that we have best-in-class personalisation and recommendations, which our users love.  WHAT IS THE BIGGEST MISCONCEPTION ABOUT THE PLATFORM? The biggest misconception about Spotify in the region is that it does not offer a free service. On the contrary, Spotify offers music fans a choice between a genuinely free, adsupported music service, or the full Premium ad-free subscription service, for ad-free, offline and higher quality listening. Spotify’s free service is a full, permanent, free service that lasts forever – it’s not a trial. Just listen and love it, month after month. REGIONAL BRANDS ON THE PLATFORM On Spotify, there is a wide range of regional brands across different sectors including, but not limited to Starzplay, Pepsico, Netflix, Disney and McDonald’s.  WHAT CAN YOU DO BEST FOR BRANDS? Spotify for Brands gets your message in front

of the right audience at the right time as they stream what they love. We also provide API integration, Branded Profile & Playlists and 3D Audio Ads, while also tapping into the Gen Z and millennial audience that is prevalent on our platform. Spotify allows brands to reach highly engaged users across several devices and platforms such as mobile, tablet, TV, PlayStation and Chromecast.   WHAT ARE THE KPIS BRANDS LOOK FOR ON YOUR PLATFORM? Brand awareness, ad recall, and brand affinity. WHAT NEW FEATURES FOR MARKETERS HAVE YOU LAUNCHED IN THE LAST YEAR? In MENA, we launched new features that will help brands tell their stories to an engaged audience. With Sponsored Sessions, your brand becomes a gateway to an enhanced streaming experience, where your audience has the opportunity to unlock 30 minutes of ad-free listening in exchange for watching your brand’s video. We can also help marketers reach gamers as we offer PlayStation targeting, where brands can reach their target audience with audio ads while they’re listening to Spotify on PlayStation Music through the PS4 and PS3 system.



As subscription video on demand continues to grow in popularity amongst today’s generation, and in a world with too many choices, Starzplay reached its audience in real time to provide customised recommendations based on Spotify’s Streaming Intelligence. The Starzplay campaign centred around giving music fans in the region the chance to take a look at their streaming habits on Spotify and discover which type of series mirrors best the aspects of their personality through an API integration.


We would like to see brands leverage the power of audio to reach the right audience at the right time, in the right context with the right message through screenless moments.


Claudius Boller Managing director, Middle East and Africa

Tamim Fares Market strategy & operations



March 22, 2020

Founded 2017 Parent company ByteDance Regional offices opened 2018 Regional HQ Dubai DESCRIPTION TikTok is the leading destination for short-form mobile video. Our mission is to inspire creativity and bring joy. WHAT IS THE PRIMARY MEDIA ON YOUR PLATFORM? Short video. USER DEMOGRAPHIC TikTok is an app for users aged 13 and older. When it comes to the demographics of our users, we have a diverse range of users across a wide range of ages. Most of our fans are young at heart, creative and extremely tech-savvy, irrespective of their nationality or age. TikTok is particularly popular among Gen Z and millennials. WHAT DO PEOPLE BEST KNOW YOU FOR? Challenges, a TikTok feature that inspires users to respond creatively and share content, were a big hit in the MENA region in 2019, generating a whopping 4.7 billion views across the region. Driving a feeling of community on the platform, TikTok Challenges are entertaining but can also drive awareness around positive social initiatives, helping users find common ground while expressing their differences. We provide an experience that is genuine, joyful and positive through bite-sized content. We give our users a platform to unleash and share their creativity. BIGGEST MISCONCEPTION ABOUT THE PLATFORM? We’ve heard people say that TikTok is mainly a lip-syncing platform for Gen Z and millenials only. However, we are actually very proud to see the diversity of content from our creative community in the region. We work closely with our TikTok community and encourage them to express their creativity across a variety of verticals from music to food, education, travel and comedy. TOP REGIONAL INFLUENCERS ON THE PLATFORM Sarah Miladd (@sarahhmiladd); Abbas (@abas.iiii); Jumana Khan (@jumana_khan); Marwan Salman (@meeeero1); Sadd Abudllah (@dxbxd)

WHAT CAN YOU DO BEST FOR BRANDS? There is a rising opportunity for brands to truly harness the power of video-first platforms such as TikTok to continue interacting with an active and diverse base of users. WHAT SOCIAL MEDIA STORY DOES THE REGION BEST KNOW THE PLATFORM FOR? The TikTok New Year’s Eve countdown. During the cross-over into 2020, at Dubai’s jubilant epicentre of Burj Khalifa, TikTok’s highlights of the year were screened on the world’s tallest building through a dynamic LED show in partnership with Emaar. At the same time on the platform, TikTok users were sharing creative and inspiring videos recapping the last year as part of the #My2019 challenge, and expressing their wishes for the new year as part of the #2020MakeAWish campaign. WHAT ARE THE KPIS BRANDS LOOK FOR ON YOUR PLATFORM? KPIs include awareness, reach and engagement, as well as bottom-of-the-funnel measurements such as app install, leads, registrations, and online sales. Brands see TikTok as an exciting way to reach and engage with a broader audience as the platform fosters an environment for creative, fun and positive experiences. The brands we see having the most success on our platform are those that embrace the creativity and authenticity of the TikTok community. TikTok gives rise to interactive trends and creative memes that encourage everyone to participate. By letting users create their own content for a campaign, brands can give users a sense of being part of the brand, turning them into authentic and powerful brand ambassadors. WHAT NEW FEATURES FOR MARKETERS HAVE YOU LAUNCHED IN THE LAST YEAR? In 2019 we made the TikTok advertising platform available to brands in Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Kuwait and Oman. Now brands can launch hashtag challenges or in-feed videos. DO YOU HAVE ANYTHING SPECIAL PLANNED FOR RAMADAN? At TikTok, we encourage all our users to create content relevant to their local cultures and trends, and Ramadan is a huge part of the MENA region that we are looking forward to celebrating with our users.

March 22, 2020

government to multinational and regional brands. These include STC (Saudi Telecom Company), the Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing in Dubai (DTCM), Huawei, Almarai, HungerStation and Saudi Aramco.



WHAT CAN YOU DO BEST FOR BRANDS? Twitter is the best place to launch something new and connect with what’s happening.

Founded 2006 Regional offices opened 2015 Managing director, MENA Benjamin Ampen Global HQ San Francisco Regional HQ Dubai Number of users worldwide 152 million monetisable daily active users DESCRIPTION

Twitter is what’s happening in the world and what people are talking about right now, from breaking news and entertainment to sports and everyday interests. PRIMARY MEDIA ON THE PLATFORM People come to Twitter because they are interested in seeing what’s happening – previously in text only, but now it is increasingly in video. Globally, video views on Twitter nearly doubled in 2018 and last year 72 per cent of audiences in MENA who use Twitter said that they “consider it as one of their main sources for online video content”. USER DEMOGRAPHIC

While we can’t disclose demographic figures, recent research in the MENA region shows that 57 per cent of audiences on Twitter spend more time viewing ads on Twitter versus other platforms, and 75 per cent of consumers on Twitter influence purchases of friends and family. We therefore see Twitter as a platform that connects marketers with the most valuable audience when they’re most receptive.

WHAT SOCIAL MEDIA STORY DO PEOPLE IN THE REGION BEST KNOW TWITTER FOR? Twitter is a place people of influence engage with the public. Over the years, His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (@HHShkMohd) has turned to Twitter to announce some of the UAE’s most groundbreaking news and initiatives, such as the new UAE Cabinet. WHAT ARE THE KPIS BRANDS LOOK FOR ON YOUR PLATFORM? Brand awareness campaigns are measured based on CPM; Tweet engagement campaigns are measured based on Retweets, Likes and replies and website click campaigns are measured based on website conversions.

Head of agency development

WHAT NEW FEATURES CAN WE LOOK FORWARD TO IN THE NEXT YEAR? We recently launched Topics in Arabic to make it easier to find the most interesting conversations happening on Twitter. When you follow a Topic, the Tweets you see about that Topic in your timeline are personalised. Arabic Topics currently include football, music and gaming. We’re adding new Topics almost every week.

Stephanie Terroir




Some of the top influencers include: Ahmad Al Shugairi (@shugairi); Elissa (@elissakh); Mohamed Salah (@MoSalah); HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid (@HHShkMohd); Queen Rania Al Abdullah (@QueenRania). REGIONAL BRANDS There has been interest in the region from advertisers across multiple sectors; from

Rabih Khoury

Head of Next


It’s not a micro-blogging site. The platform allows people to see every side of the story, join the open conversation and watch livestreaming events.

Meghan Doyle Head of sales, Branding sector

WHAT NEW FEATURES FOR MARKETERS HAVE YOU LAUNCHED IN THE LAST YEAR? We launched Promoted Trend Spotlight in Saudi Arabia. This is a takeover ad product that pairs the power of video with the premium real estate of Twitter’s Explore tab, Twitter’s collection of trending topics and hashtags,.


A real-time platform whose purpose is to serve the public conversation.

Antoine Caironi Head of sales, Multi sectors

WHAT’S A FAVOURITE BRAND CAMPAIGN ON YOUR PLATFORM? Recently we worked with STC on a global-first rebranding campaign in Saudi Arabia under their campaign umbrella ‘Let’s go further’. For the activation, Twitter built a custom activation asking audiences to tap on a livestream to gradually unveil the new STC brand manifesto video. The full video was unveiled in less than three hours post-launch, generating almost 180,000 views of the full unlocked video.

WHAT WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE BRANDS DOING MORE OF ON YOUR PLATFORM? It’s important to follow creative best practices, especially when it comes to video. The creative should be short and focused to grab attention quickly; it should have strong visuals to make it easy to process the message; and clear and persistent branding should be included throughout the ad.


March 22, 2020

Parent company Google Founded 2005 (acquired by Google in 2006) Global HQ San Bruno, California Number of users worldwide More than 2 billion monthly logged-in users DESCRIPTION YouTube’s mission is to give everyone a voice and show them the world. WHAT DO PEOPLE KNOW YOU AS? The hub for MENA’s most diverse creators’ community. WHAT IS THE PRIMARY MEDIA ON YOUR PLATFORM? Video BIGGEST MISCONCEPTION ABOUT THE PLATFORM? There is a misconception that businesses can produce a single TVC or video ad to place on YouTube and be able to reach different audiences and markets. In fact, brands need to start applying personalisation in their communication as the audiences of today expect messages relevant to their passions or, even better, to their tension points. They expect brands to be relevant to them and to take their needs into account. SOME TOP CREATORS IN MENA Noor Stars, Mmoshaya, Mo Vlogs, Arab Games Network, Naz. WHAT CAN YOUTUBE DO BEST FOR BRANDS? With YouTube, businesses and advertisers can understand the interests of their audiences in order to deliver engaging ads in the right format, and at the right time.

WHAT SOCIAL MEDIA ACTIVATIONS DO PEOPLE IN THE REGION BEST KNOW THE PLATFORM FOR? YouTube NextUp: A five-day crash course where creators learn about video production, learn how to use high-quality equipment and get to know the ins and outs of building a rockstar channel with fun video assignments, and more. YouTube Batala: A hub dedicated to highlighting more than 400 leading Arab female YouTube creators. When we launched the hub in late 2016, only four female creators had crossed the 1 million subscriber mark. Now the number of female-led channels with more than 1 million subscribers has grown exponentially. Designed to prove YouTube’s effectiveness at achieving business results through the adoption of alwayson YouTube campaigns, YouTube for Action events answer specific client briefs and break down client roadblocks around creative asset production,

media and measurement strategy development and user experience/ user interface optimisation. At the end of a full-day, client-specific workshop, each client walks out with a ready-tolaunch YT4A campaign. WHAT ARE THE KPIS BRANDS LOOK FOR ON YOUR PLATFORM? There are many KPIs depending on each brand’s objectives, including watch time, engagement, total impressions and conversions. WHAT NEW FEATURES FOR MARKETERS HAVE YOU LAUNCHED IN THE LAST YEAR? YouTube for Action is a great way to drive conversions from video, and several brands have successfully used the product across the marketing funnel. DO YOU HAVE ANYTHING SPECIAL PLANNED FOR RAMADAN? The annual Think with Google series covers the A-Z of planning a marketing campaign for Ramadan, based on audience and industry insights.


I would love brands to be more agile on YouTube. It’s a fantastic playground to test, learn and scale. Try and innovate with new creatives, new audience approaches and new stories. There’s so much potential in each brand; YouTube can unleash a lot of this potential if the teams are agile.


March 22, 2020


The MENA region is home to people from all over the world. We look different, speak differently, like different things. So how did Oreo show that their cookie is everyone’s cookie? By getting personal. Rather than glossing over people’s differences with a one-size-fits-all approach, Horizon FCB in partnership with Spark Foundry (and produced by Fuelcontent) tackled it head-on, while highlighting one very important thing: people’s mutual love for Oreo.

Since the whole of the GCC was their audience, they took the platform to multiple channels, used data to target multiple interests and created content suitable for multiple contexts. Here’s how it played out: The platform “We Are Oreo People” was launched on YouTube with a catchy jingle. The video showed a contrasting yet locally familiar group sharing in the joy of eating an Oreo. Then, they identified the most searchedfor topics on YouTube with the help of Google. Using YouTube’s Vogon technology, bespoke pre-rolls were created for 10 of the most popular search categories, such as music, TV shows and sports. But here’s the Oreo Twist (no Lick or Dunk included): Unlike other brands that tailor the targeted


BEBELAC’S TODDLER TAKEOVER OF SOCIAL MEDIA Bebelac needed a disruptive engagement idea on social media that linked strongly to Bebelac functional benefits of physical, brain and social Development. The idea had to tackle a unique truth about today’s tech-savvy toddlers. Bebelac’s target audience spends a lot of time on social media, especially to get parental and nutritional advice, so Horizon FCB knew their idea had to break through the saturated clutter and get people intrigued. INTRODUCING: KIDSTAGRAM A digital campaign that tapped into a unique truth that all parents know – toddlers today steal their phones, and know how to use them. We partnered with three of the region’s most influential mommy influencers (Deema Al Asadi, Rand Aldisi, Noussa Nour), people who moms were already turning to for guidance,

and created a campaign with real thumb-stopping power. The mommies were tasked to post content that made it seem like their toddlers had stolen their phones and were posting themselves. This included blurry posts, sloppy camerawork and gibberish captions, all from the toddlers’ point of view. With more than 300,000 views in the first three hours, the creative and media teams realised they’d struck social media gold, and so did the mommy influencers with a 500 per cent increase in their typical engagement rate. The revealer videos were then posted from all three moms at the same time, revealing the idea behind the campaign and the brand’s role in the brain development of toddlers today. By finding a new way to post partner content through influencers, Horizon FCB found a new way for Bebelac Junior to speak to their audience.


message to suit the consumer’s taste, they intentionally mismatched their pre-rolls. For example, if you clicked on a “Football highlights” video, you’d see an ad featuring a Bollywood dancer. If you searched for pop music, a Tabla Player popped up, etc. After a moment’s confusion, the campaign revealed that even though you or the character in the ad were completely different, you both had one thing in common: your love for Oreo. They also tapped into Anghami, and adapted the Oreo People jingle to create audio ads that spotlighted people’s unique music tastes. The Oreo People campaign wasn’t only a success for the brand, it was a success for the whole biscuits and cake category. It achieved a total of 31.4 million impressions in just six weeks. Oreo’s VRT skyrocketed to 49 per cent vs. an average of 25 per cent in previous ads. There was also a 22 per cent uplift in Vogon ad recall compared to 11 per cent of generic ads. By not restricting themselves to one execution style, medium or topic, Horizon FCB were able to cast a wide net and reel in real results. But most importantly, they proved to the region that, despite our differences, we’re all Oreo people.



March 22, 2020


Austyn Allison BEWARE OF THE ‘THEY’


his column can’t help but be about the coronavirus. Which means it will be out of date by the time you read it. News is breaking fast. Sometimes ‘news’ is travelling faster than events are actually occurring, leading to confusion and misinformation. I’m sure you’ve all heard of the agencies and clients where workers have been taken away by medics in hazmat suits. Some of those rumours may be true. For the good of everyone around us, now is the time to double-check the facts before sharing a single rumour, and to corroborate what we hear before we pass it off as truth. Through social networks, real and virtual, we

For the good of everyone around us, now is the time to double-check facts before sharing a single rumour, and to corroborate what we hear before we pass it off as truth. are all citizen journalists now – whether we like it or not. So it is necessary to apply journalistic rigour to the news we spread. Beware of ‘they’, because ‘they’ are neither a source nor an actor. ‘They’ say if you can hold your breath you don’t have the virus. ‘They’ told your colleague’s friend he is infected and might have spread the disease. ‘They’ say all flights are going to be cancelled. If someone cites ‘they’, then ask them who ‘they’ is. Then corroborate that with a look at

Austyn Allison ‘their’ website or social media is the editor of channel, or a phone Campaign Middle East call if you know ‘them’ well enough. @maustyn If it’s worth sharing, it’s worth confirming first. There is a place for speculation, but it needs to be clear to everyone that you are speculating. And speculate on what you are an expert in. Turn to page 9 for some expert speculation from Initiative’s Mazher Abidi, who wonders how the pandemic will have changed work and society once it has passed. He doesn’t know what will happen, and he admits that. But he’s got some theories that are well worth exploring. One of the things I’ve been most proud of our industry for through this whole episode is how little it has tried to turn coronavirus to its own ends. There is plenty of opportunity out there to capitalise on disaster or to virtue-signal with cynical and empty gestures. Just look how quickly Bono got his coronavirus single released. It would be nice to see more brands doing more to help, of course, in the way that companies in other geographies are switching their manufacturing plants to produce hand sanitiser, giving accommodation to medical services and feeding front-line workers, for example. But some are helping here too. They are just not bragging about it, which shows admirable restraint. It’s also wise – because it is so easy to go wrong. I chuckled when the ever-wry Twitter account of Dubai’s KHDA education authority posted that “now is not the time to surround yourself with positive people”. But I do worry that the trending #InItTogether hashtag might be contrary to advice to stay away from others. If we can keep doing the right thing, keep checking our facts and remember to keep our sense of humour we should be OK.

Motivate Publishing Group Head Office: 34th Floor, Media One Tower, Dubai Media City, Dubai, UAE. Tel: +971 4 427 3000, Email: Dubai Media City: Motivate Publishing FZ LLC, Office 508, 5th Floor, Building 8, Dubai, UAE. Tel: +971 4 390 3550, Fax: +971 4 390 4845 Abu Dhabi: Motivate Advertising, Marketing & Publishing, PO Box 43072, Abu Dhabi, UAE. Tel: +971 2 677 2005, Fax: +971 2 677 0124, Email: London: Motivate Publishing Ltd, Acre House, 11/15 William Road, London NW1 3ER. EDITORIAL Editor-in-Chief Obaid Humaid Al Tayer Managing Partner and Group Editor Ian Fairservice Editor Austyn Allison Editorial Intern Shamoun Shahbandri DESIGN Senior Art Director Olga Petroff Junior Designer Thokchom Remy ADVERTISING ENQUIRIES Tel: +971 4 427 3000 Chief Commercial Officer Anthony Milne Group Sales Manager Nadeem Ahmed Quraishi (+971 50 6453365) Group Marketing Manager Anusha Azees PRODUCTION General Manager S. Sunil Kumar Assistant Production Manager Binu Purandaran HAYMARKET MEDIA GROUP Chairman Kevin Costello Managing Director Jane Macken

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Twitter tests ‘disappearing messages’ feature Twitter appears to be following other social media platforms in offering disappearing messages after announcing it is testing a feature that allows tweets to vanish after 24 hours. The ‘Fleets’ function is being tested in Brazil and they are viewable by tapping on a user’s profile picture, while people can only react to Fleets with direct messages. Twitter appears to be adapting the “Stories” format that has become popular on Instagram and Snapchat. Kayvon Beykpour, Twitter’s product lead, said the company wanted to create new features that “address some of the anxieties that hold people back from talking on Twitter”.

He said: “People often tell us that they don’t feel comfortable tweeting because tweets can be seen and replied to by anybody, and feel permanent and performative (how many ‘likes’ and retweets will this get?).” While Twitter has long been popular with celebrities, media personalities and journalists, the platform has tried to make itself more user-friendly to a wider audience. It has also struggled with policing hateful content, particularly when it comes from political figures such as US President Donald Trump. The move came a week after Microsoft’s dominant business-to-business social network LinkedIn announced that it was testing a “stories” feature. Snapchat was the first to introduce an ephemeral format in 2013. It was copied by Instagram in 2016 and has since been widely adopted across the social media sphere, including Facebook, WhatsApp and YouTube.


March 22, 2020

Working together Clients and agencies must strive hand-in-hand to deliver what consumers expect, writes Dubai Tourism’s Issam Kazim


e are acutely aware that the global communications industry continues to witness exponential disruption, causing frequent and significant changes, which marketers tirelessly manoeuvre to stay in front of. Even as I write, news of the death of the cookie is sending reverberations (perhaps prematurely) through the industry, forcing many to existentially ask: What now? Certainly, buoyed by increasing competition for consumer attention, a proliferation of channel options and changes in digital regulations, marketing efforts constantly need to pirouette back and forth in a symphony of brand-focused and customer-centric approaches. With the rising demand for differentiated experiences from digitally connected consumers, we also face an industry in constant flux, and what worked for us last month is not guaranteed to work in the following one. Our target audiences no longer fit nicely into neat little definitions, but instead are a kaleidoscopic cacophony of intent, interests and psychographics, constantly shifting in digital headwinds, billowed by ever-changing social media algorithms. What does this mean for us, and how do we achieve scale in a fragmented world that really only unifies around big cultural moments in time, like the Super Bowl or Expo 2020 Dubai? It comes as no surprise that as we enter the new decade, audiences’ wants and needs are becoming more complex and meeting them is becoming harder. The collaborative relationships that brands share with their agency partners must evolve to meet these complexities. We all know there is no one-size-fits-all solution that applies to all audience segments. Therefore, understanding consumer behaviour, intent and key buying triggers is imperative if we want our brand and message to be relevant and distinct – particularly in today’s digital-first world. Marketing strategies across the board (especially in travel and tourism) need to showcase the brand, while at the same time ensuring a personalised message that truly resonates with today’s consumer needs. Personalisation is much more than just tweaking a message; it is about adapting a brand’s communications in real time to deliver a bespoke customer experience based on customer insights. It is all-inclusive and involves blending traditional and digital marketing channels and tactics to deliver the best possible

customer experience, adopting a real-time marketing, multichannel, hyper-targeted and ultimately bespoke approach. Successfully implementing this approach means that agencies need to be good at listening to their brand partners, and must be aware of the micro landscapes in the marketplace to effectively gauge evolving market demands. Brand partners need to learn from their agency partners’ understanding of an ever-changing communications ecosystem. Agencies must also deliver diversified services, going beyond a single area of expertise. This calls for marketers to wear several hats across a complete campaign ecosystem, driven by paid, earned, owned and shared media. The strongest campaigns are those that weave together traditional and non-traditional channels, increasing brand impact, maintaining consistency and delivering the best-inclass experience for consumers.

“Personalisation is much more than just tweaking a message; it is about adapting a brand’s communications in real time to deliver a bespoke customer experience.” Issam Kazim is CEO of Dubai Corporation for Tourism and Commerce Marketing and a member of The Marketing Society Middle East

This relentless pursuit of excellence in innovative communications has fuelled Dubai’s ongoing initiatives, serving as the foundation of a customer-focused approach that Dubai Tourism adopts for all marketing efforts, not only to encourage repeat visitation and longer length of stay, but also to address key travel barriers. Our efforts to showcase the diversity of the emirate’s offerings to different audiences worldwide continue to be amplified by efforts such as 360-degree integrated, ‘always-on’ campaigns and through celebrity-led programmes, developed in partnership with our brand agencies to further highlight the city’s multi-faceted destination appeal. A renewed focus on Dubai’s brand, and what we stand for, has driven the need for global assets that tell the story of Dubai. An example of these recent projects is the first-of-its-kind and incredibly successful global campaign, ‘A Story Takes Flight’, which saw Hollywood stars Gwyneth Paltrow, Kate Hudson and Zoe Saldana embark on three separate exploration journeys through Dubai. The Dubai brand focus has extended to campaigns designed to respond to individual market and audience requirements. There have been various examples of this, including: the phenomenally successful #BeMyGuest series with megastar Shah Rukh Khan to raise awareness among audiences in Dubai’s No. 1 source market, India; the ‘Dubai Face Off’ campaign in the Nigerian market to create a one-of-a-kind travel experience package where 10 Nigerian celebrities gave fans the opportunity to travel with them to Dubai; and the #ThisisDubai campaign, a unique first with TikTok that invited GCC users to share their Dubai stories with themed music for a chance to win an exciting holiday to the emirate. In order to ensure we are responding to changes in customers’ purchasing decisions, we have built several customised, dynamic and creative optimisation tools that enable effectively targeted advertising across display, social and video channels. This allows us to capitalise on our combined understanding of each channel’s unique qualities, and how our audience behaves within the channel. We benefit from strong relationships with all our agency partners, built on fluid, open, and honest communication, as well as clear expectations, trust, and transparency. Overall, these relationships are essential in ensuring we thrive as one of the world’s foremost brands.



March 22, 2020

KFC… ‘It feels like two ads spliced together.’ (OS)

Lincoln… ‘Remarkably unremarkable.’ (OS)

Etihad… ‘Do we always have to portray wome this way?’ (PK)

KitKat… ‘A great, simple idea.’ (PK)

Pocari Sweat… ‘I can’t stop thinking about sweaty sleep.’ (PK)

March 22, 2020


Private View ORLANDO SMALLWOOD Media manager, Entourage

PAUL KELLY Creative director and co-founder, Digital Ape

KFC (1) This is definitely a worthwhile initiative; anything that moves in the right renewable or sustainable direction for the fast food industry has to be a positive. However, it feels like two ads spliced together; the first half is clearly there to bring the audience in with the tried and tested ‘food porn’. The second half has too much exposition and I fear it will lose people, even if they do make it to the end. The closing line coupled with the fading ‘Barber of Seville’ seem to leave the ad unfinished.

KFC (1) I love the KFC idea as an idea. I suspect there’s just a wee bit of awards bait, but it’s a nice idea. The message of eating with your hands might have some poor timing now, I guess – unless KFC customers love a good gauntlet like the chap in the case study. Which got me thinking – is KFC that messy that I need everything to be a napkin? I’d also wonder how absorbent they are? They might become transparent very quickly and potentially have unintended negative messages. Great idea!

LINCOLN (2) Remarkably unremarkable. We’ve seen this ad a million times. If you were asked to describe what a Middle Eastern car ad looks like, this would be it. Despite the execution being clean and crisp, the sheer number of stereotypes ticked off is impressive. From the thoughtful architect/designer character to the obligatory product features and finishing with the ultimate stereotype of the high-achieving young Arab guy in the traditional desert setting, this ad is littered with them. The VO may have previously been seen as speaking to the region, but surely it will be viewed as patronising now. Was there nothing more creative they could do?

LINCOLN (2) What is it with car ads? Would it kill them one day not to have a man (it’s always a man) driving with some sort of distant, potentially accident-inducing, gaze? Product is nice. Actor, likewise. Copy is a little clunky, but as a car ad it’s working to the extent I know a Lincoln can excite me if I tell it to. I feel like this would’ve been a great opportunity to shake up the genre and put some stereotypes aside, showing that driving is for everyone.

ETIHAD (3) The concept is nice and simple and the initiative is a pertinent one in this increasingly divisive world. The execution is acceptable if a little wooden, but the old-school family charm works for an airline when most communication is more about bravado and chest-thumping. KITKAT (4) We all know what’s coming in a KitKat ad. It is one of the longest-running campaigns in the world. However, this execution manages to surprise and charm. Driving with GPS and jokes arising from it have been used many times but, in this instance, the ‘reveal’ is unexpected and adds to the established “Take a Break” message through the humour. Nice details like the Twitter followers also add to the relevance. Well thought through, with a nice spin on a very old story and nicely executed. POCARI SWEAT (5) These sorts of ads only really work when you have a genuine connection with the subject. If you don’t feel anything for the people who are sweating, will the audience care? The message is clearly on-brand but isn’t taking Pocari anywhere new or breaking new ground for the category. Dreams can be quite a lazy concept and this needs more zest, more ability to get us off our sofas and doing something so that we actually need the product.

ETIHAD (3) These are fun and get the message across well, even if I feel the creative travel scene borrows heavily from Snatch. That goodness aside, do we always have to portray women this way, the diminished comic stereotype? I get it, it works, it’s easy. Would love to see the insight on the strategy that chose these executions. I also would be interested to see what an all-female creative team’s approach to these stories would be. (Hey ed, maybe that’s a future Campaign challenge?) KITKAT (4) This is a great, simple idea. The Arabic ad feels much stronger than the English one, which is probably just a personal preference. A great idea that reinforces the brand message in a fun way using a story we can relate to and has nice, well-delivered humour. Nice production too, and clearly for a global audience. High five! POCARI (5) I mentally read this with the wrong intonation and thought it was sweat, for your dreams (as in some sweat for dreaming, which to my utter disappointment is not the intent). That aside, the gym makes a lot of sense. The guy in khakis walking through the desert then at a market seemed incongruous. Did I like it? I have no idea as I can’t stop thinking about sweaty sleep. 


Title: Napkinised Agency: TBWA/Raad

Lincoln Middle East

Title:The All-New Aviator Agency: GTB Production house: Electriclimefilms Director: Josh Hayward DOP: Tommy Daguanno

Etihad Airways

Title: Get There Faster Agency MullenLowe Open Abu Dhabi & London Global creative lead: Ben Knight Creative directors: Mike Dawe, Lee Manton


Title: Even Technology Deserves a Break Agency: Publicis Middle East/Dubai ECD: Rana Najjar Creative director: Mohamed Bareche Copywriter: Hani Mohsen Art directors: Mohamed Youcef El Naggar; Saaniya Annas Associate director: Abdel Rahmane Hassouna Production house: Prodigious TV producer: Mayssa Mohamed Ali Al-Azem Director: Vincent Lobelle

Pocari Sweat

Title: Sweat For Your Dreams Agency: Dentsu MENA ECD: Cristiano Tonnarelli Art director: George Zamroud Social creative art director: Leomerish Gale Leyco Social creative copywriter: Amer Medani Production house: Tomorrow Executive producers: Andonio Sabatella, Rula Bevilacqua Director: Celia Peterson DOP: Corrado Serri Music: Stabbiolo Music


March 22, 2020

The Spin The Spin was a little worried to receive an email on March 18 offering spa offers at a major chain hotel on the Palm Dubai (offer valid until March 31). We’re sure the experience would be lovely, but three days previously the emirate had shut down all massage parlours and spas until the end of the month. The Spin asked whether this would be an issue, but met with silence. Recently The Spin got an angry phone call from a PR agency asking why its clients’ photo had been used on this page. We had suggested that the power pose of the two men pictured made them look like stage magicians, singers or stars of a cop drama. This image (right) has nothing to do with the last one. The agency is different, the client is different and so are the men. But we’re wondering if the same captions could apply. The Spin might seem all fun and frolics, but in truth we’re grumpy so-andsos. Which is why we plan to avoid renewing our bus pass in Ajman. A door that won’t open unless you smile at it sounds like a cross between The Hitchhikers’ Guide to the Galaxy and 2001: A Space Odyssey. Or simply existential hell. Here’s how to do hand sanitisation the wrong way. When pictures emerged from Saudi Arabia of a man dressed in a sandwich board that dispenses hand sanitiser, the world’s media was quick to jump on the company behind it with accusations of worker exploitation and worse. That’s probably not the reaction his employers were looking for.


Marketing Mania

Loeries Creative Week

November 11-12 Dubai World Trade Centre, Dubai

August 31 to September 5 Johannesburg, South Africa

There is a new kid on the block that promises to rock your world. Marketing Mania, a creative and digital festival, is coming to Dubai this November. It promises more than 10,000 marketing, design, advertising, social and creative professionals under one roof , with competitions, activations, demo zones, performances, live art and training as well as high-profile speakers.

For more than 40 years, the Loeries  has been recognising, rewarding, inspiring and fostering creativity across Africa and the Middle East. It’s more than an award. It’s about doing something. Something big. Something you believe in. Something that makes a real difference. Challenging the world. Changing it – from bitter to better, less trending and more mending. Flipping the likes and fixing the dislikes. It’s about making work that doesn’t count views, it changes them. Loeries 2020 – #CreateChange Entry deadline 11 May

For more details:

More details at

Profile for Motivate Media Group

Campaign 22nd March 2020  


Campaign 22nd March 2020