The Warc 100, our ranking of the world's smartest ad campaigns, recognises those campaigns that have done particularly well at the world's effectiveness and strategy awards over the past year. The inaugural top 100 (full list here) is a very varied set in terms of national origin, with non-mainstream markets listed alongside the traditional Anglophone ad powerhouses.
Number three on the list, and the top Asia-Pacific campaign, is 'It's More Fun in the Philippines', from BBDO Guerrero. This initiative positioned the Philippines as a "fun" destination. On a media spend of zero, the "more fun" message became a social media phenomenon. And, when I spoke to him last month, BBDO Guerrero's CEO, Tony Harris, credited the Philippines' biggest asset – its people – with the campaign's success.
"People's perceptions of Filipinos is, good humoured, happy, hospitible, great company," he said. "So if you want to do something that's interactive – use the people!"
That said, the campaign was initially a tough sell in a culture in which boastfulness was tantamount to a crime. Merely saying "I'm better" does not work in a Filipino context, Harris said. But the less confrontational "more fun" message simply worked, and was adopted by everyone from the president – who used the phrase in public speeches multiple times – to the enormous Filipino diaspora.
The campaign results speak for themselves: post-campaign, tourism arrivals hit an all-time high of 4.3 million.
Warc subscribers hoping to learn even more about each of the world's smartest campaigns can also read the full case studies where we have them. And, if you're on the rankings but don't have the case on Warc yet, please drop us a line.