|Brand||AL - WALIMAH RICE|
|Product/Service||AL WALIMAH RICE|
|Entrant||MAYAR FOODS Dammam, SAUDI ARABIA|
|Category||Excellence in Partnerships|
LEO BURNETT Jeddah, SAUDI ARABIA
Idea Creation 2
3 POINTS ADVERTISING Jeddah, SAUDI ARABIA
ABILITY AGENCY Riyadh, SAUDI ARABIA
Media Placement 2
JOKER Riyadh, SAUDI ARABIA
ABILITY AGENCY Riyadh, SAUDI ARABIA
MINT MENA Dubai, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES
Why is this work relevant for Entertainment?
For the people of Saudi Arabia, YouTube is not only an entertainment platform, but also a place where creative self-expression and alternative ideas are commonly promoted. So, we leveraged the popularity of social media to help us challenge the perception that being a chef is actually a serious career choice for many in The Kingdom.
We packaged our brand partnerships with a strategy, called Social-Tainment, using the Kingdom's favourite past-times - Social media and Entertainment. We launched Al Walimah Chef – the country’s only online cooking competition, which aimed to validate the careers of aspiring chefs in The Kingdom.
In a country that is currently going through a progressive shift of modernization, many were still holding on to their conservative beliefs. The definition of success was still being judged by the traditional ideology that you had to be a 'doctor' or an 'engineer' to be successful.
Al Walimah has been inspiring Saudis to unlock their creativity in the kitchen for years. There was a new generation that views culinary arts as a serious career path, however they were still hesitant to publicly showcase their talents in fear of societal backlash.
As a brand that has been empowering the 'everyday' chefs to embrace the fun of cooking, our objective was clear. If we wanted to change the current perception of Chef's in Arab society, then we needed to take it a step further, and show the people of Saudi Arabia what it really takes to be a chef.
Describe the creative idea.
We proactively collaborated with our partner brands and took part in the country's progression with an idea that helped to shift the perception of what it really takes to be a chef. We launched Al Walimah Chef - a cooking series that pit the country's aspiring chefs against each other in a winner-takes-all format.
The content was primarily launched on youtube - a platform that was highly visited by millions of saudis daily. The series took an in-depth look into the emotional and cultural stigma that aspiring chefs in today's conservative society face.
Every week, contestants compete against each other to showcase their talents to millions of viewers and a panel of international and regional judges. Over the seasons, the competition became more popular as cultural acceptance was slowly shifted. By the 3rd season, we had over 15 contestants compete, and over 200,000 entries. Something completely unheard of!
Describe the strategy
Saudi Arabia has one of the largest social media usage in the world, with Youtube consumption at more than 70% of the population. If we wanted to shift the cultural sentiment of Saudi society, then we would need to speak to them on a platform they visited and trusted. So, we decided to launch our new cooking web-series on Youtube.
We reached out to various FMCG brands such as Betty Crocker, Lipton, Arla, Galaxy and Twix and asked them to provide their products for our culinary challenges. They didn't hesitate. By Season 3, we had over 13 global brands onboard, all showcasing their products in ICCA's test kitchen, which was also provided to us.
The show's contestants and social celebrities used the products each week as millions watched from the comforts of their homes, giving Al Walimah and our partner brands heavy exposure.
Describe the execution
The competition spanned over 3 seasons with each season seeing a new group of social and TV celebrities promote the show. The sign-up process was so successful that the show had received close to 200,000 entries by Season 3.
The entry videos and applications in the 1st season alone were flooding in at a rate that our panel of judges became so overwhelmed, that we had to set new parameters for the upcoming seasons.
The show also grew over time and received funding and sponsorship from brands all across the region. The production value also increased, which helped to validate our social cause and shed light on tomorrow's culinary heroes.
Social influencers and Celebrities were constantly raving about the show without any paid endorsements or media spend. Most importantly, our initiative helped to launch the career of 2 former contestants with global brand ambassador roles.
Describe the outcome
- We partnered with over 13 brands.
- Market Share increased by over 118%+
- Over 90+million views on our channel.
- Over 228+M Media Impressions
- Positive brand sentiment was 87%, a 6% increase from the previous season.
- But most importantly, we helped to validate the culinary careers of The Kingdom’s aspiring chefs with Al Walimah Chef!
||senior digital media manager