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Operation TikTok "Dọn nghiệp thoát ế (Wipe off karma for not being FA)": The power of understanding users and capturing trends

The challenge here was to upend brands like Pepsi, Neptune, Nestle and more, who have been building up brand storylines during the Tết holiday period for many years.

Operation TikTok "Dọn nghiệp thoát ế (Wipe off karma for not being FA)": The power of understanding users and capturing trends

It is undeniable that TikTok has become a phenomenon across the world. Entering the Vietnamese market in 2018, TikTok has become the most popular application for the young generation, with innovative, unique and eye-catching features. In line with the 2019 Tết holiday (the Vietnamese New Year), TikTok leveraged on CastingAsia to drive festive engagement with online communities in Vietnam.

Dieu Nhi spreading the message "Dọn nghiệp thoát ế" on Tết

Challenging the traditional meaning of "Tết holiday"

The challenge here was to upend brands like Pepsi, Neptune, Nestle and more, who have been building up brand storylines during the Tết holiday period for many years. Driving consumer engagement, these campaigns usually focus on diversity and generating strong branding impacts on the brands. Additionally, social networking platforms for young Vietnamese like YouTube, Facebook or Instagram are frequently used by brands during this period.

The challenge for a new but fast-rising brand like TikTok is in standing out amongst a playing field of large and more established brands, and attract the hearts and minds of target users (18- to 25-year-olds in Vietnam). Additionally, how can a brand like TikTok build on top of the traditional Tết holiday theme whilst maintaining the existing Tết spirit.

Building a memorable story

“Ế”: Since the beginning of 2016, the slang usage of “Ế” or "FA", to signify a male or female who has not been in a relationship for a long period of time, has increased in popularity and become an endless source of inspiration for many music videos, television commercials, TV programs, and more.

“Khẩu nghiệp”: Most similar to the word “karma” in English, this slang has spread across social networks and television programs.

“Dọn nhà trước Tết”: A saying for spring cleaning before Tết, and a tradition for Vietnamese people. The cleaning of acommodation, before Tết holiday, signifies moving on from the previous year, and welcoming a smooth new year.

As a new but fast-growing brand in Vietnam, the strategy for this campaign was to break away from the traditional and bring a fresh perspective to the Tết theme. At the same time, the Tết holiday provides an opportunity for online communities to share videos and Tết wishes through the TikTok application. Herein lies the opportunity for TikTok to build connections with users by providing new ideas and ways for Tết greetings - celebrating the New Year in a unique and novel way. Through TikTok stickers & hashtag #DọnNghiệpThoátẾ, users can signify the removal of “Khẩu nghiệp (karma)” and “Bùa thoát Ế (escape from singlehood)”, implicitly conveying new year greetings and pleasantries to welcome the new year.

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Driving audience action

TikTok's Tết holiday campaign leveraged on strategic consultation and creative conceptualization, delivering the same key message across multiple channels to maximize the reach of the campaign. Targeting a generation Z audience in the south of Vietnam, including the Ho Chi Minh City and Can Tho regions, the campaign was carried out across several stages:

Identity: Instead of running television commercials, TikTok leveraged on a single “hero-influencer” for the campaign. As the main campaign lead, Dieu Nhi, best known in Vietnam as a comedian with an authentic flair, was chosen. Additionally, her image is often associated with positivity, enhanced through her lead role in the famous Vietnamese sitcom series “Chiến dịch chống ế”.

In addition, TikTok also worked with influencers in various fields to maximize coverage for the campaign.

Approach: Employing a variety of social media influencers, including the presence of TikTok content creators such as Thanh Pate, Linh Barbie, Cong Pi, and more, users were invited to join the hashtag challenge to create short video clips (15s) showcasing diversity and "cleaning up" to escape singlehood.

(Source: Cham Bran, Red Bean Tung Tang, Meomunden's sweet home)

Conquest : The target audience of the campaign not only has access to social media and KOLs but also read online news (banner ads) or surf social networks (YouTube Trueview, Facebook Ad). With widespread coverage from the top KOLs in Vietnam to the TikTok top feed, the campaign has succeeded in driving user-generated content as well as contributing to this viral movement. Users were able to participate in “Dọn nghiệp thoát ế (Wipe off karma for not being FA)” to start the new year, and take part in a new and trendy campaign (that leverages on viral music content).

Through the TikTok app, users can create unique videos to share on the mass media and social networks, growing their number of followers. This provided both users and TikTok with a "win-win" effect.

Campaign results

After many coordinated efforts from TikTok and the AdAsia and CastingAsia teams, the campaign brought impressive numbers:

19,129 people took part in the campaign

24,831,351 views on TikTok with hashtag #donnghiepthoate;

30,367 UGC videos under the hashtag #donnghiepthoate;

Active interaction with content on other social networks with 1,389,866 likes; 15,685 comments

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