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Festival of Creativity
27 - 29 September 2017




CategoryA06. Best Use of Media Relations
Name Company Position
Andrew Thomas Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide Managing Director
Stephanie Yip Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide Director
Emily Poon Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide Senior Account Manager
Prisca Hoo Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide Senior Account Manager
Parita Mulani Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide Senior Account Executive
Alina Tan Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide Senior Account Executive
Emerald Loh Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide Account Executive
Samantha Kudus Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide Account Executive

Describe the campaign/entry:

With less than six months leading to the world’s first Youth Olympic Games (YOG) to be held in Singapore, we embarked on an intensive media outreach campaign across 13 markets to raise awareness of the Games, educate audiences about the Olympic values and enhance the perception of Singapore. The campaign received over US$ 15 million (advertising value equivalent) in coverage, and more importantly had successfully shifted perceptions from skepticism to excitement about YOG and its inaugural host city, Singapore.

Describe the brief from the client:

Engage youth, communities and media across five continents to embrace these messages: • YOG is a holistic games integrating sport, culture and education • YOG promotes the values of Excellence, Friendship and Respect • View Singapore (host city of S2010) as a choice city to live, work and play To better track results, we constructed a survey to complement the quantitative value of coverage. The pre and post-campaign surveys analysed influencers’ attitudes towards YOG, Singapore and message absorption.


Close to 90% of media surveyed recalled YOG values of ‘Excellence’, ‘Friendship’ and ‘Respect’. Seven in ten media associated the world’s top athletes with YOG, these positive sentiments were mirrored by headlines like ‘Showing the World What the Youth are made of’. Perceptions that Singapore was ‘sterile’ and ‘conservative’ shifted to Singapore being described as ‘rich in diverse cultures’ and ‘beautiful’. Over 80% expressed interest to live, work and play in Singapore. Within six months, OPR generated over 4,000 media clips with USD15.7million in AVE. About 160 rights-holding broadcasters and 1,900 accredited journalists attended and covered the Games. In addition, YOG drew strong international interest with five billion viewers watching YOG YouTube clips, and over 107,581 ‘likes’ on S2010’s Facebook page. S2010 saw the participation of 370,000 international spectators, 5,000 athletes and officials from 205 National Olympic Committees (NOCs) taking part and was regarded a huge success.


Acting as content hub, we worked with the client from Singapore to create and disseminate a dynamic storybank of updates, news, ideas and materials to 13 offices within the agency network, which in turn, enriched the storybank by engaging with in-market stakeholders to generate relevant content for audiences across diverse cultural and media landscapes. A planned phasing of themed media stories took audiences on a journey that begun from Singapore winning the bid to pertinent issues like “importance of sports to curb rising obesity” to Games experiences, and finally, a successful YOG. Testimonials of triumph, friendship and respect from diverse groups of people for insider coverage of the Games, along with creating visual content, were crucial in effectively providing media with ‘live’ journeys of the YOG.

The Situation:

In the competitive and crowded world of sporting events, the Games had to compete for media mind space against established professional leagues and tournaments, i.e. the World Cup, Formula One, National Football League, etc., which were taking place during the same period. While fighting to transform negative perceptions of YOG echoed by consumers and media reporting headlines like ‘Isn’t YOG merely the Olympics for children?’. Singapore was only given one-third the time other cities take to organize an Olympic Games, and we only had six months to pull together a global media relations campaign.

The Strategy:

Everyone loves a good story – they transcend time and culture by evoking emotion. They stimulate the imagination, communicate knowledge, entertain and importantly, build community. For our purposes, a global community of sporting youth and a world that supports their pursuit of excellence. Stories also form rich content for media to pick up and amplify our messages. The Olympic values of respect, friendship and excellence formed the foundation of our strategic approach to engage the various audiences around S2010. It was the guiding principle to the stories we tell, how we tell them and who we told them to. We teased out the tales by building three generators of content around people – the athletes, the event – from preparations to the Games, and issues – what the Games represent to the youth. This meant creating a robust content generating hub with active enrichment from markets to ideation and tailoring for relevance.