Case study: How Astro and BSN stood out during the festive Raya season

Ramadan and Raya are probably the biggest celebrations of the year in Malaysia. With more than 61% of Muslims within Malaysia’s 30.9 million population, opportunities are a plenty for brands to roll out marketing campaigns to target this large audience base.

However, this also poses a major challenge every year as to how brands can stand out amongst other Ramadan or Raya ads to capture and engage with its audience. In a bid to help Malaysian bank BSN achieve this, Astro came up with its BSN Kata Yang Penting Ikhlas campaign which managed to break through the clutter of festive ads while building BSN’s affinity.

This led to Astro winning the sliver for the Best Media Solution in Experiential, for its BSN’s “Kata Yang Penting Ikhlas” campaign at the Spark Awards 2017 in Singapore recently.

This post was done in conjunction with Astro.


Every year, during the Ramadan-Raya period (11 June to 22 July 2016), ad spaces are cluttered with festive ads in every high reach media platforms. BSN needed a highly relevant campaign and platform to cut through the clutter and build affinity with the Malay consumers as the period was a criticial one to capture the attention of Malay consumers aged above 15 years old.


Instead of another feel-good ad, Astro decided that it was timely and relevant to link the campaign back to BSN’s core business and talk about money management. While duit raya is known to be an important element for Hari Raya, latest insights showed that duit raya was losing its meaning as a means to cultivate mannerisms and generosity. Children were demanding for more money and adults used it to flaunt their wealth.

With that, BSN said it wanted to promote the importance of sincerity. It launched #BSNKataYangPentingIkhlas to remind the public about the values of duit raya - which is a measure with sincerity and that “when one is sincere, unexpected rewards may come your way”.


The main objective of this campaign was to break through the clutter of festive ads while building BSN’s affinity. At the same time, the bank also wanted to spread the message of generosity and sincerity.


First, Astro sparked conversations about duit raya with a social experiment on its Astro Awani’s HLIVE segment. A voxpop featuring adults’ and children’s point-of-view about duit raya was released highlighting the problem, thus triggering self-reflection amongst the viewers. The reaction of children were captured when they were given the envelope with RM1 duit raya. Most of them were surprised, some even said “mana cukup” (This is not enough).

At the same time, the company also used other platforms such as radio, talksets and CSR announcements, and promos were seeded via Era, Sinar and THR Gegar to spread the message to grassroots listeners. To engage online users, video content, branded digitorials, banners and social media postings with the hashtag #BSNKataYangPentingIkhlas were served on Astro Gempak and social media, to draw impressions and enable shareability of the content. On-ground support including radio cruisers, colour pieces and live crossover, gave extra millage by drawing footfalls to BSN’s #BSNKataYangPentingIkhlas on-ground activation at nationwide locations.

Approaching Hari Raya, a branded capsule featuring Astro’s popular host Pak Nil engaged in conversation with children about duit raya. This was released as a teaser for the finale of the campaign. The capsule highlighted the proper mannerisms for children when receiving duit raya and branded with the campaign hashtag.

Meanwhile, at the finale, BSN took over a full episode of MeleTOP and seamlessly weaved in the hashtag #BSNKataYangPentingIkhlas throughout the talkshow. The special episode invited Pak Nil, who had earlier established association with the campaign, to co-host the episode.

Between lighthearted conversations about Hari Raya, the topic of duit raya was brought up in several parts of the show. Celebrity guests who were on the show show reminisced on their Hari Raya memories where it was all about togetherness and less materialistic, whereby duit raya was just past of the perks. A parody MeleTOP skit was added to emphasise the message through comedy. To interact with TV and online audiences in real-time, TV viewers were asked to tweet and hashtag #MeleTOP #BSNKataYangPentingIkhls to win an exclusive BSN cooler box. Call-to-action was seeded at high volume through MeleTOP’s social media within the one-hour show time, to push for awareness and participation.

At the peak of the show, Pak Nil took over the stage and did a social experiment on the spot, by asking children in the live audience to search for duit raya under their chairs. After revealing the amount of duit raya they received, they were asked to watch a video of a poor family that couldn’t afford celebrating Hari Raya, and were presented with an option on whether to donate or to keep the money.

This led to the children deciding to donate to the poor. Due to their generosity, BSN gave them the “unexpected reward” by doubling their duit raya and encouraging them to save. A video reporting the happiness of the family after receiving the donation concluded the campaign on a high note.


The BSN campaign surpassed expected results on all mediums. On TV spots alone (30-second HLIVE voxpox + 30-second MELETOP capsule), Reach 1+ achieved 72% of Malay aged above 15 (Astro subscribers), exceeded KPI by 16%. Effective reach 3+ also exceeded KPI by 28%. BSN-MELETOP take-over episode (Live + Repeat) was watched by 2.9 million Malay viewers (Malay 4+), and became the highest rated MELETOP episode for the month.

MELETOP video posts on YouTube garnered additional 55,298 views. MELETOP “BSN cool box” contest garnered 3,331 hashtags and 3 BSN cool boxes were given away for every 100 tweets. With 90 postings made through MELETOP Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and with #yangpentingikhlas, #BSNKataYangPentingIkhlas, it recorded in total of 18,464 engagements.

On radio assets, all spots (CSR announcement and promo spots) garnered 1.4 million listenership (19% above KPI); 81% reach 1+ (1% above KPI); 65% reach 3+(3% above KPI). Three digital editorials on radio websites recorded 450 page views; while 21 Facebook posts reached out to 155,612 followers; 28 Instagram posts garnered 17,537 engagements.

The message, delivered in a sincere and thought-provoking way, added credibility and awareness of BSN. With outstanding deliveries, the brand succeeded in cutting through the clutter and won the heart of the Malays during the crucial Ramadan-Hari Raya season, by engaging them with a highly relevant campaign message that was delivered through creative media placements and expressions.