Case study: Behind Astro and Digi's 'Switch Off The Radio, Watch It Instead' spot

The telecommunications (telco) industry in Malaysia has become increasingly competitive over the last few years, with a few key players dominating the market. There have also been growing challenges arising from the proliferation of smart devices, which have caused a surge in demand for cost effective mobile data plans. Therefore, telco providers are now trying to translate greater data usage into higher revenue per user (ARPU).

Digi, a local telco company, wanted Malaysians to experience the endless possibilities that come with their mobile data service. As part of their ongoing #keepstreaming campaign, Digi partnered with Malaysian radio network, Astro Radio, to create awareness amongst the young.

The Astro Radio and Digi campaign "Switch Off The Radio, Watch It Instead" won Gold in The Spark Award 2017’s Best Media Solution – Radio category in Singapore recently. Here's how the campaign was created.

This post was done in conjunction with Astro Radio.


Digital platforms have thousands of hours of content added to them every day. Therefore, the challenge for Digi and Astro Radio was not only to create content, but to ensure that the content was widely consumed. That is where the strength of working with the number one radio brands in all youth demographics comes into play.


Astro Radio created a distinctive campaign approach to work with each radio brand’s demographic – hitz fm, ERA fm and MY FM. An urban English speaking audience that thrives on fun and adventure on hitz fm, a mass Malay audience that loves their rock music on ERA fm; and the love of all things celebrity with a Chinese audience on MY FM. The common link between the three demographics is their appetite for digital content and social media activity.

Astro Radio also said it regularly monitors and tracks what keeps its fans switched on to its brands, and knows exactly how each brand is being consumed and perceived, both on air and on digital platforms. As such, it knows the types of content that attract fans, and creates the most engagement. With that in mind, Astro Radio cleverly transformed its radio content into sharable, on-demand content that ran on their social media platforms as well as radio.


For the telco industry, enabling content that keeps their subscribers glued to their phone is their lifeblood. So, for Digi, increasing the association between its brand and #keepstreaming, meant creating content that would capture its target audience.


Each brand ran its own campaign for Digi to best attract listener participation. On air provided hype and dropped teasers to get people to consume the content; on-air also drove brand awareness through frequency, while digital components carrying Digi branding reinforced Digi’s #keepstreaming campaign promise as listeners viewed content on their devices.

On hitz fm, the partnership with Digi inspired the hitz "Fugitive" campaign – the brand’s most anticipated bounty hunt in exchange for cash. Rather than starting on-air, hitz drove anticipation through digital video content that immediately caught traction and had social media abuzz with shares, views and reach creating higher interest in the on-air content when they launched.

On ERA fm, they ran JoHaRockstar – the chance to be mentored by one of Malaysia’s biggest bands and be the star attraction at a concert organized by Malaysia’s largest radio brand. ERA used the digital sphere, and created a social media frenzy. Audition videos were submitted via Instagram, garnering approximately 4,000 entries. Audience and coaching sessions were highlighted on air and on social media, with listeners able to share the content created. ERA’s campaign finally led to a live concert, where a hungry public flocked to see JoHaRockstar unveiled the champion before their very eyes.

The on-air and digital elements for this campaign were vital in keeping listeners engaged – snippets from coaching sessions; having consumers engaged till the grand finale. This was a campaign that ran in the public eye (via social media and on ground engagement) and in their ears (via radio) from audition to finale.

Finally, on MY FM, was the “BE YOURSELF” campaign. Together with Malaysian Chinese heart throbs Thomas and Jack, MY FM gave fans a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Listeners were rallied to submit their amazing version of a Thomas and Jack video. Winning fans got to star in a Thomas and Jack music video featured at their concert, which was further amplified using MY FM’s digital platforms.


The revolutionary radio campaigns integrated with strong Digi brand association, allowed the radio brands to create content that kept listeners tuned in to them and Digi’s #keepstreaming message. The message was delivered to users – when hooked to their devices; and even when they were consuming other forms of media.

The result saw an average of 10.8 million in brand exposure among, listeners and 18.3 million in social media reach – creating absolute top-of-mind for the telco company.


Audrey Chong, head of marketing communications for Digi Malaysia said, “The team at Astro Radio went all out to meet our briefs for the campaigns. The ideas were spot on brief and the commitment and collaboration provided by the Astro Radio team was truly commendable.”