KFC tickles Singaporeans with local touches

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A US brand shows it knows this Asian nation in the first TV ad by its new agency

SINGAPORE — In its first work since taking over the quick-serve brand from Ren Partnership earlier this year, Ogilvy & Mather Singapore brings a lighthearted, distinctly Singaporean touch to a campaign for KFC.

In a demonstration of cultural finesse, the fast-food chain plays lightheartedly on quirky behaviors that denote "Singaporeanness": using tissue packets for "chope-ing" (reserving) seats at public eateries (being kiasu) and queuing up for freebies that may be inconsequential but are still free (or dirt cheap). The spot also evokes SG50, Singapore's year-long 50th anniversary celebration.

Melding cultures, KFC pairs the English-language "so good" slogan it employs in many global markets with the Singaporean phrase "so shiok" (which translates to "damn enjoyable").

"SG50 is a special time to come together and celebrate all those little things that really make us Singaporean," said Juliana Lim, senior marketing director, KFC. "This approach is a great fit with our ‘SoGood’ promotions as it offers a fun way to highlight endearing Singaporean customs and traits."

According to Shirley Tay, managing director, Ogilvy & Mather Advertising, Singapore: "KFC is known around the world for brilliantly incorporating local flavors into its menu and marketing in ways that local people love. ... We wanted the brand to stand out through food imagery that is more natural and wholesome, and to share our story with consumers in an authentic way."

Campaign credits

Client: KFC Singapore
Creative Agency: Ogilvy & Mather Singapore
Creative Directors: Troy Lim, Jon Loke
Art Directors: San San Yap
Senior Copywriters: Adrian Yeap, Airina Imran
Planning Director: Tan Wee Hoon
Account Management: Shirley Tay, Jesz Ang
Media agency: Mindshare Singapore
Producers: Amanda Zhang, Stephenie Lee

This article first appeared on campaignasia.com.

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