Case study: Genki! and ADK Global KL wow mothers with diapers campaign

Breaking into a new market can be tough for companies, especially when they are going up against well-established brands. As such, the need to capture audience's attention in an innovative manner becomes more imperative. Japanese baby diaper brand Genki! faced the challenge of raising brand awareness and gaining consumer trust when it first launched its pants diapers in Malaysia in 2016. To stand out from the crowd, it worked with ADK Global Kuala Lumpur to launch the campaign "WOW Bersama Genki!".

This led the ADK Global to win Silver - Excellence in Brand Awareness at the Marketing Excellence Awards Malaysia 2017.

This post was done in conjunction with ADK Global.


Genki! saw itself in the midst of a battle against multiple giants- segment and brand. Despite the multiple brands in the market, the possibilities for differentiation at the product level were exhausted. Without new product innovation, it was difficult for the brand to stand out from the clutter. Genki! was pitching itself against brands that had decades of presence, popularity and trust of consumers. Hence, it had to think of an innovative way to convince mothers to trust their babies with a new brand.


There are two axes standard to the diaper category - rules established and rules practiced. For Genki!, playing by the category rules wasn't an option. It had to change the game.

Rule 1: Baby-centricity

The first code Genki! unravelled was putting the child as the center of the universe. All brands were promising baby's comfort and joy. Research uncovered a personal tension among its target Malaysian mothers - one-third of Malaysian women felt held back at work by their children. As such, Genki! realised that its core target audience had other priorities that were equally as important to her as her child.

Rule 2: Home sweet home

Genki! noted that diaper commercials were always filmed "at home", which was another cliché in the category. Hence, it needed to create a new occasion to drive usage for pants. Genki! knew that showing diapers in a familiar and controlled environment could not act as a true test of its performance. If it was going to gain consumer trust, Genki! needed to prove it.

The company came up with an idea from a simple insight "Travelling with a baby is stressful for the parents". Genki! wanted to own the idea of selling diapers consumers could trust in out-of-home settings where unpredictability and stress prevails.

The idea was to acknowledge and portray the truth rather than perpetuating unrealistic norms of the category. The company saw a tremendous opportunity to forge a more genuine and meaningful relationship between Mums and the Genki! brand, simply by shifting the category axes beyond the baby and the home.


In light of the parity battle and the challenge faced as a brand unfamiliar to consumers, it aimed to deliver these objectives:

  1. Brand: To build a sharp positioning platform for Genki! to increase brand awareness and consideration especially among malay mums.
  2. Business: To grow market share in pants and close the gap with key players and current market leaders.


Genki's travel content series targeting urban Malay Mums

Genki! created and produced its very own Wow Bersama Genki! - a branded content series in the form of a travel show.

Over eight weeks, it documented the adventures of seven local celebrity families - Norman Hakim, Nabil Ahmad, Cheryl Samad, Lana Nordin, Tomok, and Genki!’s brand ambassador, Harith Iskander. These celebrities were chosen based on their appeal to the Malay mums and to build the brand's credibility quickly.

Each 30-minute episode centered on the real-life happenings (and occasional mishaps) of each celebrity family and their little ones going on trips to holiday spots in Malaysia with the Genki! Pants in tow. More importantly, the content gave viewers a chance to look at the happy interactions of the family, paying close attention to show how well its product performs in out-of-home environments.

Awareness content

To tell the world, it teamed up with TV network Astro and created an online hub so everyone could see the Genki! families even if they did not have access to the paid TV channel. The episodes were aired on Astro Ria and Ria HD during prime time, every Wednesday, 9pm over eight weeks from 15 February to 5 April 2017.

TV was Genki!'s main traffic driver but assets were extended across radio (Sinar FM) to promote its TV program and interview with Oji Asia Household Product MD, and brand ambassador. Other platforms used were social media (Astro Gempak Facebook Page and Genki Facebook Page), in-store and contests.


After one month of the campaign launch, Genki! presented fastest sales growth within the baby diaper category in March 2017, according to Nielsen Retail Audit. Total brand awareness level doubled in numbers. In April 2017, at least one out of two Malaysian mothers with diapering kids aged zero to three years old were aware of Genki! More than 50% of Malay Mum’s have seen WOW Bersama Genki!, according to IPSOS Connect.

The TV programme garnered 239,000 views on Astro RIA/RIA HD from its main audience who are urban Mums with children zero to three years old. The campaign microsite also accumulated 350,074 web video views.