Our new report published in association with IBM, The Real-Time Customer Experience, investigates how we define real-time marketing, how brands can get started, and the opportunities afforded by data and personalisation.

It also offers a glimpse of the future with case studies from forward-thinking brands in Southeast Asia that are already capitalising on these techniques.

In this post I’ll summarise three of the case studies included in the report, which come from McDonald’s, Nokia and Singtel.


Singtel used Twitter’s Promoted Trends as part of a one-day campaign to advertise its new 4G network.

The activity centred on the hashtag #Need4GSpeed and involved comedian Hossan Leong.

Twitter users were asked to share the scenarios in which they might require 4G network speed, and Leong then created short skits which were published on YouTube within 30 minutes.

In order to generate interest, Singtel sent personalised videos to prominent bloggers alongside using Promoted Trends.

In total the brand uploaded 23 videos, accompanied by many more tweets and images to keep the dialogue with consumers moving.

The results:

In just eight hours Singtel received a total of 1,400+ submissions to #Need4GSpeed, 450+ @Singtel mentions and over 500,000 tweet impressions. The campaign generated over 32,000 engagements and 1.54m impressions on the Promoted Trend day.

Daily brand mentions increased 17x over the daily average and traffic to SingTel’s 4G website increased by 39%.

The campaign generated so much content and conversation that the hashtag continued trending 24 hours after it ended.


This case study is a few years old now, but it’s still a good example of successful, real-time marketing.

Nokia wanted to come up with a fresh approach to launch its new Asha 303 handset in Indonesia, a market that has been traditionally dominated by Blackberry.

Blackberry was seen as the market leader due to its QWERTY keyboard and Blackberry Messenger (BBM), the latter of which was seen as a sign of social status.

However as BBM is a closed system it also limited the user’s social circle.

A key objective of Nokia’s campaign was to reignite interest in the brand and “show rather than tell the youth of the world how social influence was more desirable than social status”.

Nokia cast a group of friends to become the ‘QWERTY team’ and invited the public to submit crazy challenge requests.

The campaign also featured the QWERTY Man, a newly created persona and the campaign’s lead character, who interacted with the audience in real time through Facebook, Twitter, SMS and WhatsApp.

The team worked around the clock to create 40 pieces of original content – planned, shot, edited and uploaded on YouTube and Facebook, all in a matter of hours.

The best challenges were broadcast on TV, giving the challengers “social influence on a national scale”.

The results:

In the first two days Indonesians submitted 2,000 challenges to the QWERTY team, with 13,500 submitted over the course of the whole campaign.

Nokia’s brand awareness rose to 40%, equalling BlackBerry’s. In the first two months the campaign generated over €20m of incremental value for Nokia.


McDonald’s used time-sensitive digital outdoor advertising at three key locations in Singapore to promote its National Breakfast Day event.

The visuals changed depending on the time and on how much stock was remaining.

The Singapore campaign was split into three stages: the teaser, the launch of National Breakfast Day and McDonald’s updated breakfast menu.

During the teaser, the digital panels featured a happy vibrating egg alarm clock to capture the attention of consumers in the business, retail and entertainment areas of Singapore – the Orchard shopping belt and the Central Business District.

The visual changed to show the egg getting squashed by a massive Egg McMuffin complete with the flashing word ‘FREE’ to remind consumers to visit their nearest McDonald’s outlet to redeem the offer.

With supplies limited, the dynamic display ads also showed how much stock was remaining, creating an incentive for customers to visit.

The results:

Some people stayed up through the night to claim their free breakfast, and the promotion – part of a worldwide drive to give away 5m Egg McMuffins on National Breakfast Day – began at 5am and was fully redeemed by 11am.