Singtel has released a festive short film in the lead up to Christmas, celebrating the joys of connecting. Titled “Grace’s White Christmas”, the film revolves around a chance encounter between seven-year-old Grace, who wants a puppy and a white Christmas, and a struggling musician who busks for a living.
Conceptualised and produced in-house in collaboration with Akanga Film Asia, the film will air on Singtel TV and various social media channels from 22 November to 31 December.
As a new day dawns, the busker reluctantly puts on his Santa costume, picks up his dog and guitar, and sets out for the day. Grace, who is neglected by her parents and left in the care of a domestic helper, spots Santa and his dog as they walk past a supermarket and decides to follow them. In her innocence, Grace believes Santa will turn her wishes into reality and tells him so. Initially annoyed with her presence as he busks to make ends meet, the musician comes to accept her playing with his dog.
At a turning point in their encounter, Grace reveals a profound loneliness that deeply resonates with the busker, prompting him to gift Grace his beloved furry companion. The film ends (spoiler alert!) with a magical scene where Grace’s wishes come true while the musician finds his spirits lifted by her joy and innocence. Both emerge from their encounter in a happier place, suggesting that the balm for loneliness can sometimes come from the most unexpected quarters.
“When we drilled down to what’s important when celebrating Christmas, it’s about giving and connecting, and doing so beyond one’s immediate family and friends. Very often, the pressures of modern living can distract us from this,” said Lian Pek, VP of group strategic communications and brand at Singtel. “Our wish for Christmas is for more meaningful connections which can sometimes be found in the most unlikely of places. At the end of the day, I’m sure we all agree that the act of giving always makes the giver richer in spirit.”
The film is an extension of Singtel’s branded content strategy where its festive commercials have had customers hooked on its seasonal tales of joy. Singtel’s previous Christmas campaign “Ah Ma’s Christmas” which had 5.8 million Facebook views, and almost half a million YouTube hits. Similarly, Singtel’s Chinese New Year offering “Mr Lim’s Reunion Dinner” saw 9.4 million views on Facebook and 1.2 million views on YouTube.
“People want more emotion, and less selling to,” added Pek. “Customers are more discerning than we think and want to engage with companies whose values they share. Our focus on narrative has resonated with customers on an emotional level that is building brand love and loyalty.”