Maxis has long recognised the importance of doing social good. Three times a year, for over 10 years, Maxis’ CSR team mobilises employees for the cause. The problem? The scale of impact was too small.
Why? Because it required physical participation.
Physical donation of physical goods.
Physical presence of employees who volunteer time and labour.
Physical attendance of media houses to drive awareness.
Despite these efforts, the impact generated for non-profit partners was short lived.
Chinese New Year 2016 (CNY), Maxis partnered with EPIC Homes, a non-profit organisation that builds homes for rural families. How could Initiative transform Maxis' decade old CSR efforts to create sustainable social impact for EPIC Homes and its mission?
1. Significance of "Home": The concept of "Home" is a core value of CNY - it symbolises happiness and togetherness. Hence why traditions like decorating home with 'auspicious omens' and reunion dinner, take place at home. Naturally, a 'building homes for the needy' campaign would drive a message that hits closest to home.
2. Online Shopping peaks during CNY: CNY is the biggest online shopping season as Malaysians shop for new clothes, home decorations, even groceries. With an estimated three million shoppers on the lookout for deals, e-commerce sites are high traffic platforms key to target Malaysians.
What if Maxis could turn each of Malaysia’s top five e-commerce platforms into a new medium for awareness, participation and volunteer recruitment for their Home-building CSR collaboration with EPIC Homes?
The agency recommended to partner with Malaysia's top five e-commerce platforms - Lazada, Zalora, Rakuten, Gem5 and HappyFresh, and transformed these online BUYING platforms into online GIVING platforms and created the Maxis Kongsi Home Project (Maxis Buy and Share a Home Project).
If the audience is in a shopping mindset when browsing these e-commerce platforms, why not utilise it? Instead of soliciting donations, it 'SOLD' donations as raw house-building materials such as wood panels and water taps as their contribution. Riding on festive relevance, each item was priced at RM8 (the Chinese lucky number) and the building materials were given auspicious Feng-Shui yet cheeky descriptions such as "Gold-with-the-Flow" Water Tap and "Confirm Nail the Job" Nails.
Strategically PLACED ALONGSIDE normal merchandise, online shoppers were sure to see the 'ads' while browsing, all three million of them. And just like any other normal merchandise, donations can be bought through a simple click of 'Add to Cart'.
If shoppers wanted to know about EPIC homes and their cause, all they had to do was click on the "vendor" link to know more, all natively placed within the e-commerce platform.
Initiative developed an extensive communications plan leveraging on the combined reach of both Maxis and the e-commerce partners’ digital networks.
1. SMS blast incorporated with link to donate to Maxis' 2.7 million postpaid base
2. In app and electronic mailers to 31.67 million users on Maxis and partners' combined digital network (email database and registered users)*
3. Postings on combined social media assets Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to drive awareness and participation to 24.61 million combined fans*
4. For the final push, it ran retargeting banners across display networks targeting users who have clicked on the 'merchandise for purchase' ads, visited project site or watched the Kongsi Home Project videos, to drive second chance conversions.
(*These numbers are a combined figure and doesn't take into account duplication of registered users between the platforms. There's a high chance of duplicated users between the e-commerce platforms.)
Additionally, to promote "purchases", the agency created awareness through a series of cheeky CNY Feng-Shui themed videos through paid ad and organic postings on content channel YouTube and social platforms. Each video promoted the "materials" available for purchase and gives Malaysians auspicious reasons on why they should purchase. Traffic was then directed to the e-commerce partners' sites to complete the transaction.
1. Manage to get enough donations to build three homes! That’s 15,751 transactions by 12,567 registered users. This figure is 6X more than what was raised in the previous Maxis CSR project.
2. Expand SUSTAINABLE social impact by bringing public awareness to EPIC Homes:
- Over 52.3 million impressions generated and more than half of these impressions, 53%, were organic contributions.
- Campaign reached over 31.67 million* netizens (Maxis and e-commerce partners' email database, registered users and social following).
- Earned media value of $443,000.
- Maxis Kongsi Home lifted overall EPIC Homes searches by 5.2x compared to pre-campaign period.
- Mass awareness for nonprofit EPIC Homes: Increased +44.9% unique visitors during campaign period, that's the highest ever traffic recorded for EPIC Homes site. EPIC Homes Facebook fans grew +8.4%.
- EPIC Homes saw an increase of 5.4x in number of volunteers post campaign.
All this was accomplished with only $23,000 media budget, that's an ROI of 19x!
3. Improved Maxis' brand imagery: Brand imagery scores for "Caring brand" grew +7% vs previous quarter.
4. Even improved internal employee brand perception: "Good place to work" scores +8% vs previous quarter.