SAATCHI & SAATCHI, Shanghai / SANDS RESORTS MACAO / 2019
Macao is an autonomous region on coast of China, not far from Hong Kong.
Famous for night-life & resorts which dwarf Las Vegas.
Portuguese colony from 16th century, Macao has a rich cultural history.
Sands Resorts Macao was first resort group to open, has several properties, notably Venetian & Parisian.
Macao attracts customers from Asia, especially mainland China (gambling is officially prohibited), but faced a local challenge: people were flocking to the resorts but ignoring UNESCO heritage landmarks & local cultural attractions.
Economy was worsening, particularly for small businesses.
Important, as Sands depends on the goodwill of local community and for many of its workforce.
We were briefed to show-case local Macao & convey there’s more to see than you realize.
There’s more to Macao than resorts.
- help community, broaden Macao’s appeal, reinforce Sands’ leadership.
- social media, especially China where Macao resorts advertising is censored.
The story was developed featuring Sands ambassador, David Beckham, and his obsession with the authentic taste of Macanese egg tarts, his adventures through the streets of Macao to re-find the taste and warm hospitality that had once touched his heart, as he escaped from paparazzi.
Became a 3-minute action comedy with elements of a Kung Fu movie, going through Macau at night on a quest for a special egg tart, the modern-day symbol of Macao’s famous Portuguese-Chinese culinary tradition.
Humour, a little mystery, great characters (played by major local TV stars), a hunky global superstar and plus it all ends with a tender moment – just like the soft centre of the egg tarts that are its focus.
Problem: Most people perceive Macao as not much more than Asia’s capital of gambling resorts.
Opportunity: in reality, Macao is much more: distinctive Macanese cuisine, UNESCO heritage sites, landmark attractions, arts & festivals, world-class entertainment, authentic neighbourhoods with well-maintained Portuguese and Cantonese traditions. (A captivating culture that most visitors whether first time or seasoned traveller will enjoy getting lost in). The real flavour of Macao could and needed to be brought alive creatively.
Solution: it does not have to be a casino resort OR local culture. It can be BOTH. Use new creative to bring these together. If we show them as integrated into the communications, we can help them become more integrated in real life.
A 3-minute film in style of an action comedy (think Ealing Comedy meets Rush Hour).
Beckham is joined on his quest by Hong Kong and Chinese screen celebrities (Luo Lan, Lam Suet, Liu Yan, Cao Tu Jun, Qiao Shan, and Yang Di) who are clearly playing against type & enjoying doing so.
In Asia, taste is often a short-cut for people to identify with. “That’s The Taste” film embodies Macao from the evolving communities to unwavering traditions, and welcoming culture. Local and global are brought together - all centred around Macanese egg tarts, found on almost every street corner.
The film was launched 19 July 2018 on the Client’s own media such as Weibo and Facebook pages.
‘That’s the Taste’ was extremely popular with Chinese audiences in Macao, HK & China, attracting more than 3.5 million views on the first day after release and has reached more than 5 million views to date. Film was seen as one of its kind - Sands Resorts had successfully celebrated local culture in a way that charmed millions.
Impact: ‘That’s the taste’ caught the imagination of visitors so successfully that guests began asking directions to the famous (but fictitious) egg tart store. Eventually, a real store was opened within The Parisian. Now a new Macao tradition has begun with many guests leaving with a box of egg tarts to share with their family back home. This is the power of good story-telling to arouse the imagination & warm the heart.