Product / ServiceDELIVEROO
CategoryG06. Breakthrough on a Budget


Name Company Position
The Secret Little Agency TSLA The Secret Little Agency Creative Agency

Why is this work relevant for PR?

Animal Crossing’s popularity soared during the pandemic. People around the world used it to escape, and Singaporeans were no different – making it the perfect vehicle to drive eyes towards our brand. The game’s vast customisation features allowed us to bring our brand in-game, while it’s social features allowed us to reach targets intimately. By taking advantage of the game’s popularity and features, we were able to establish ourselves as the only delivery brand that will deliver anywhere – even in a video game. And, because anyone can play Animal Crossing, we were able to do it all for free.


Despite being in the market for 5 years, Deliveroo was falling behind its competition and losing its relevance with Singaporeans. In a discount-driven market, Deliveroo’s value-add in quality service went unnoticed. In a bid to turn that around, Deliveroo spent their entire marketing budget on a nation-wide outdoor brand campaign demonstrating its dedication to Singaporeans. However, just a week into the campaign, Singapore announced the Circuit Breaker, putting the city on lockdown. 80% of the entire population was stuck indoors and the billboards and bus stop ads aiming to change their perception were rendered effectively useless. With limited marketing budgets, we needed a quick and cost-effective approach that enabled us to go where our audiences are while emphasising our dedication to quality service.

Describe the creative idea (20% of vote)

The creative idea was simple & meaningful: deliver where no delivery app had before, by delivering in Animal Crossing. In 24 hours, we created a virtual HQ and Deliveroo uniforms using in-game customisation tools. We also designed a mechanic that mirrored food delivery services in real-life, allowing users to place an order via Facebook Messenger. We then sent virtual Deliveroo riders to deliver in-game food items to players' island homes, together with a promo code that island owners can use to redeem food in real life. Players also received real-time in-game delivery updates on when their food will arrive, demonstrating Deliveroo's excellent service at all times. To maximise excitement and participation, we seeded Facebook communities, as well as local gaming and lifestyle media. On campaign day, a virtual war-room was set up for the Deliveroo customer service team, virtual riders, and tech support to ensure all deliveries were fulfilled.

Describe the PR strategy (30% of vote)

In a time where so much of the news cycle was focused on negativity and the disruption that the pandemic has brought to our lives, we decided to pitch our activation as a surprise and delight to break through the bad and catch the audience's attention. To create greater anticipation and participation for the event day, we released images of our Deliveroo HQ in animal crossing and drummed up the incentives of free in-game items and delivery promo codes. To ensure that we reach the right audience, we focused our efforts in pitching to highly targeted media where our audiences engaged which included lifestyle media such as Mashable and The Straits Times, but also gaming communities such as HardwareZone.

Describe the PR execution (20% of vote)

Based on past learnings, the press releases were coordinated with our media partners to go out 2 days before campaign day – long enought to maximise anticipation, but short enough to avoid losing audience interest. The pitching was also done on an unpaid basis, so we worked closely together with our media partners to craft angles that were the most suitable for their publication.

List the results (30% of vote)

This three-hour digital activation garnered over 700,000 engagements and 13 million impressions, with $0 media spend. It earned $1.2 million in media value, across major publications such as Mashable, Timeout, AsiaOne, and The Straits Times, Singapore’s top news website. More importantly, Deliveroo Crossing demonstrated the lengths Deliveroo would go to delight its customers at the height of the pandemic, demonstrating its service excellence and reinstating the brand as category leader. At a time when Singaporean's only comforts were online communities and piping hot food, Deliveroo came through, igniting brand love and setting Deliveroo on the right path to long-term growth.

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