From smartphones, to mini movies and vivid graphics, these are some of the themes that represent the eclectic mix of ads on YouTube that were the most popular in the second half of 2017 in Singapore and the creative use of content by brands and agencies to win attention and drive action.
Gadgets ruled the roost as in December 2017, Singapore’s Year-in-Search revealed that the country is a nation of techies – with the iPhone 8 and iPhone X earning top spots in the Trending Searches and Trending Gadgets lists. Singaporeans also showed their love for smartphones through the ads they watched. Three of the 10 ads on the Leaderboard launched new smartphones into the market, with the iPhone 7 ad featuring star power, Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson taking the coveted spot at #1, while the Xperia XZ1 (#2) and Samsung Galaxy Note 8 (#6) were not far behind.
Another theme that stood out was that Singaporeans love a good (mini) movie. Cinematic storytelling is prominent in this edition of the Leaderboard. Feeding into Singaporeans’ love of a good story, audiences followed the gripping plot of LEGO’s The Breakout Bunch to outsmart the LEGO police (#7), or have the perfect summer with the LEGO Friends (#8). Heartwarming tales by Nutella (#5) during Christmas also proved to be a hit with Singaporeans.
The Leaderboard shows that star power counts as Apple’s iPhone 7 ad uses a combination of a Hollywood star (Dwayne Johnson) and humourous stunts to grab the viewer’s attention. But sometimes global stars are not quite the right fit, with local social influencer, Aarika Lee, being featured in not one, but two ads in the Leaderboard for Royal Caribbean (#3)’s heartwarming video on family and McDonald’s (#10) – who also made it to the H1 Leaderboard – catchy tune for McDelivery.
Nicole Lai, Head of Marketing, Asia Pacific, Royal Caribbean, said, “In celebration of Royal Caribbean’s 10th Anniversary, we adopted a different approach in our brand communications in order to connect with our local audience on a more personal, intimate level. #RCIFAMILYFIRST shows a different side of Royal Caribbean, one that reflects our underlying brand values, emphasizing the importance of family. With this campaign, we were able to build new, meaningful audience relationships while also strengthening existing ones. This is the first time we have made it on the YouTube Ads Leaderboard, and it is a big honour for us. Leveraging the power of YouTube has ensured that our message reached the right people, and we are glad that our content has hit home with Singaporeans.”
The list also showcased some new ways to present content. Brands used beautiful graphics and colourful illustrations to present information in more relatable and appealing ways for audiences. For example, Singapore Airlines (#4) used an unconventional way of demonstrating in-flight safety through captivating scenes of landmarks across the island; while MySkillsFuture employed moving infographics to introduce and navigate its portal (#9).
Campbell Wilson, Senior Vice President Sales & Marketing, Singapore Airlines, said, “Singapore Airlines is renowned for service, being the most awarded airline of all time. It’s only right, therefore, that our inflight safety video does justice to this cherished philosophy and rich heritage, whilst also proudly showcasing Singapore’s many and diverse attractions to a global audience. We’re delighted that YouTube viewers have also found the video appealing, and we’re humbled that it features among the most popular videos on the YouTube Ads Leaderboard.”
Stephanie Davis, Country Director for Google Singapore, said, “Day and night, Singaporeans go to YouTube to be entertained and inspired, and the time spent watching YouTube increased by 30 per cent this past year. The brands on the Leaderboard knew they had to earn Singaporean viewers’ attention, and they found creative ways to do this, such as featuring interesting personalities and using filmmaking techniques in their ads. The range and quality of storytelling on display here is outstanding, and it’s great to see brands like Apple, Royal Caribbean, SkillsFuture Singapore, and Singapore Airlines doing so well. There is inspiration in their great work.”