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How being lazy can help you run a good marketing campaign

Always wanted to just sit on the couch, munch on crispy chips and spend hours binging on Netflix? All that while hoping the campaign that you’re working on would just complete itself when you’re done?


Viral Marketing

As defined by Kaplan & Haenlein, it is a form of word-of-mouth (WoM) that is spread at an exponential rate through social media. This method applies the Pareto’s 80/20 Principle. Doing only 20% of the work (igniting the WoM) and lets the other 80% work out by itself (WoM explodes through social media).

Case study of Hunt The Mouse (OCBC partnering with OCBC)

OCBC worked with Sqkii to run a viral marketing campaign “Hunt The Mouse” secured a Bronze in the MobEx Awards 2018 for Best Campaign – Social Platform and a Gold award for the Best Campaign – Viral Marketing category.

A video announcement for the 2019 Hunt The Mouse. Source: Sqkii’s Youtube channel

OCBC & Sqkii initiated this viral marketing campaign and received a positive outcome. Making “Hunt The Mouse” a Triumphs in social media viral marketing campaigns.

It met the 3 conditions that were mentioned by Kaplan & Haenlein:

  1. Messengers – Sqkii dispersed the message through their social media account with strong brand advocates. These advocates would play the role of Market Mavens & Social Hub, spreading the message of the campaign. The local media was quick to pick up on it.
  2. Message – The $50,000 winning cash prize was announced
  3. Environment – Luck was on their side that the campaign was positively received.

What did OCBC get from this?

Apart from OCBC running a cool campaign, did they actually achieve anything from all of this?

1. Product Awareness


Firstly, the overall purpose of the campaign was to bring awareness to their new all-in-one payment solution application: OCBC Pay Anyone. With the QR payments industry being very competitive, with other platforms launching before them. By running such an interactive & entertaining campaign, they managed to break away from the clutter.

2. Shorten the decision-making process

This campaign pushed participants to jump ahead in the consumer’s decision-making process, skipping almost all the steps and going straight into purchasing/taking action (downloading & using the OCBC Pay Anyone application). OCBC Pay Anyone ‘s special access to the additional hints was the main reason for this. Participants didn’t even think twice to take action and download the app.

3. Induce trial & brand switching

Apart from gaining customers that were new to all-in-one payment apps. Some of the participants of the Hunt The Mouse contest would have been using a competitor’s app. By having special access to extra hints only through OCBC’s app, it encouraged the participants to switch brands. Hence, another big win for OCBC.

OCBC stealing your users
4. The bottom line

By sponsoring $50,000 as cash prize and spending $1,500 on media, the campaign generated:

  • 12.5 million impressions
  • 2,408 user-generated content
  • 100,000 sales transaction
  • 14% increase in OCBC Pay Anyone app downloads

Viral marketing is a potent weapon that could generate high returns with a small budget. However, with higher returns, there are higher risks. Sometimes a viral marketing campaign could generate a negative outcome and it might just be due to a lack of luck, an example would be National Geographic’s publicity stunt to promote “Every Singaporean Son”. Hence, in viral marketing, you either go big or you go home.

Have you seen any interesting viral marketing campaigns? Share it in the comments below.

Written by: Azrin Hamdan

18 thoughts on “How being lazy can help you run a good marketing campaign”

  1. Hi Azrin!
    I like the example you used (Hunt the Mouse) to explain viral marketing 🙂
    However, you mentioned that Word-of-mouth (WOM) will spread at an exponential rate through social media.
    I’m just curious about what are the example or ways of using WOM through social media?

    It will be grateful if you reply me back!

    1. Hi Lee Jonghyun!

      Thank you. Yup, there are lots of examples. A good recent one would be by EA Sports and it is still ongoing. They are promoting their new FIFA20 game which will be out in late September. Part of their marketing campaign included a form of WoM using social media. They created an Instagram story filter where users would get a generated in-game player rating of themselves. I saw a lot of my friends trying it out and sharing the results on their Instagram stories. You might probably have seen them while you were browsing your Instagram stories. Here is an example from a twitter fan.

      It is definitely a refreshing and interactive way to do it using the Instagram story filter. I foresee more companies jumping in to do the same.

  2. Hey Azrin, yet another interesting blog post. Thank you for keeping me engaged.
    I think it’s really cool how OCBC used the additional hints to product differentiate and win customers over, all while playing a game. Really good campaign, which simultaneously creates brand buzz.

    1. Exactly, they definitely made use of the conversion rule of using scarcity and urgency. We definitely can learn a lot from them

  3. Interesting read! You caught my attention when you mentioned about working being done by itself while I can sit back and relax! I like the example you used, about OCBC making use of Sqkill users to generate awareness for their campaign, and everything took off by itself when the hype was created, but you also mentioned that it is a high risk high reward strategy, and negative outcome might occur due to lack of luck instead of positive ones. So I am wondering, is luck really an important factor? or did The Mouse Hunt became a hype because people were seeking the prize money as they see it as a monetary reward for taking part?

    1. Hello and thank you for the compliment 🙂

      Yes, I agree that the Mouse Hunt became a Hype because people were hunting the huge prize money. However, the hype might have gone awry should someone decide to take the opportunity to hijack the campaign and spread negative comments about OCBC. With such a huge spotlight on the event, such a situation could badly hurt OCBC’s reputation as a brand.

      An example of how luck was a major factor would be Starbuck’s twitter hashtag campaign, #spreadthecheer, to promote themselves during the holidays. A twitter user decided to hijack the hashtag and decided to bash Starbucks for not paying taxes. Other users decided to follow. Hence, they received a wave of negative tweets. It was even projected on a big screen at London’s Natural History Museum.

      Therefore, I believe luck is always an important factor. With Murphy’s Law, “Anything that can go wrong will go wrong”, you need bucket loads of luck for everything to go right.

  4. Hey Azrin, great read and an even greater example used for your take on viral marketing. I have came across a marketing campaign that was produced by Duracell and it featured a deaf NFL player, Derrick Coleman. Derrick Coleman NFL Commercial. They played this commercial during the NFL Super Bowl 2014 half time, which attracted 111.5 million viewers on the night itself. Would you consider this to be viral marketing and what are your views on the campaign?

  5. Hi, Azrin. Your topic is very eye catching. I think one of the key point for OCBC to succeed is due to the brand recognition. OCBC is very popular, thats why people will watch the video. If OCBC is an unknown brand, the views will be much less. Therefore, brand name helps a lot on this strategy.

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