Sting Red: Sting Strawberry Creates Custom Mobile Game to Engage and Inspire Generation Z


Campaign Summary

To strengthen its position in the market and deepen its relationship with generation Z in Vietnam, PepsiCo beverage brand Sting Strawberry created a custom mobile game that allowed users to explore new places and win prizes from the comfort of their own homes.



Though Sting Strawberry or Sting "Red" from Suntory PepsiCo was one of the more popular energy drinks among Vietnamese youth, it was in danger of losing market share as competitors sought to dethrone it. So, for this campaign, the brand wanted to solidify its footing with young consumers with a fun and unique activation.

Target Audience:

2021 was a rough year for Vietnam, as social distancing became instituted, and many provinces and cities decided to close non-essential businesses as the health situation deteriorated steadily.

For 2022, as many localities began to return to some semblance of normalcy, Vietnamese youth had no plan to lock themselves down again, as the 2021 restrictions and stay-at-home orders hit them extremely hard, generating a surge of new stresses that made things like dating, making friends, and learning difficult. Instead, they were going to be making up for their lost time as more and more felt comfortable resuming things they had not done since before 2021.

Understanding that, Sting wanted to help these anxious young people to experience new things. To do so, the brand created "Khu Toi Khong Song – Where I Don't Live" — a unique online experience that allowed users to venture out of home, explore hidden gems in their cities, and be challenged on how well they really knew these areas.

This experience targeted Sting's core consumer group — individuals who were 15 to 30 years old. These people are self-confident, full of energy, and digitally savvy, having never known a life without connected devices.

Creative Strategy:

In the early stages, the big challenge for Sting came from the fact that its competitors had already established brands with younger personas that would potentially be more appealing to young people. Sting had to attempt to find a different and unique way to get closer to and engage with the young generation in order to be top of mind when these individuals were asked about their favorite energy drink brands.


The big idea was getting young people who were seeking an energy boost to enjoy everyday experiences and turn their daily lives into cool and edgy adventures using an innovative activation by Sting.


Overall Campaign Execution:

The campaign concept was powered by technology — specifically digital signal targeting and artificial intelligence (AI) to ensure messages were reaching the right audience in the right place at the right time.

The first phase was to tease the online experience with a music video for a song called "Khu Toi Khong Song — Where I Don't Live," which was released in the early 2000s and is an iconic Vietnamese hip-hop song. Leveraging this piece of Vietnamese culture would create a big boom and raise awareness of the new activation.

The next phase sought to engage with the target audience via a web app upon which the game was being launched, giving young people a chance to play and to earn attractive awards such as exclusive merchandise from brand. The game featured several unknown locations. Users were given the opportunity to explore and receive hints, before finally being prompted to guess where they were exploring.

To keep the game fresh and exciting, AI-powered social listening was used to scan the web to identify cool, yet little known places. These insights were used to help inform new locations within the game. When playing the game, participants could guess where the location was and join a queue to take a check-in photo with the Sting logo, upload the photo to the landing page to complete the journey, and get points. The more places discovered, the more points players earned, which could then be redeemed for prizes, including the grand prize — a limited number of trips to Son Doong, the world's largest cave, located in the heart of Vietnam's Quang Binh province's UNESCO-listed Phong Nha — Ke Bang National Park.

Mobile Execution:

The entire journey happened on a smartphone. Sting used 100-percent mobile media to reach its audience through mobile-friendly ads on social media and in-page display ads across popular local sites. Mobile phones' also assisted the players in receiving the location hints each week, capturing and submitting exciting check-in photos, and receiving valuable rewards accordingly.

Business Impact (including context, evaluation, and market impact)

Within a month, Sting was able to generate 24 million engagements on social media. More than 40,000 participants played the game — more than four times higher than expected, creating more than 200,000 check-in photos. The campaign also solidified Sting's business by improving its share of market by 30 percent, maintaining the brand's position in the market.

Categories: | Industries: | Objectives: Instant Impact | Awards: X Global Bronze Winner