Short List
CategoryE01. Corporate Image, Communication & Reputation Management
Idea Creation 2 TELENOR PAKISTAN Islamabad, PAKISTAN


Name Company Position
Yasir Yasin Telenor Pakistan Head of Marketing
Asim Naqvi Ogilvy Pakistan Chief Executive Officer
Naved Qureshi Ogilvy Pakistan Senior Executive Director
Sarah Tariq Hassan Telenor Pakistan Manager Digital Content & Brands
Gohar Abbas Ogilvy Pakistan General Manager
Hamza Amjad Ogilvy Pakistan Senior Creative Director
Hamza Iftikhar Ogilvy Pakistan Account Director
Shan Haque Ogilvy Pakistan Associate Creative Director
Huma Shahid Ogilvy Pakistan Creative Manager

Why is this work relevant for PR?

A Norwegian owned company in Pakistan had to earn the trust and loyalty of Pakistanis. This relationship had a turbulent past. A Norwegian newspaper reprinted blasphemous content, which sparked calls of boycotting Telenor in Pakistan. Despite all odds Telenor positioned itself as a brand that every Pakistani wants. This purpose of empowerment for all by digital inclusion put forward a solution that gave an identity to 1.2 million invisible Pakistanis. Those devoid of all the rights as Pakistani citizens were able get themselves accounted for by Digital Birth Registration; a simple Android-based application which became their passport of hope.


SITUATION UNCRC states that “every child in this world has a right to a name & nationality” and one’s national identity is crucial to social, political and economic inclusion. It’s a child’s passport to protection against underage labor, child marriages & trafficking. Despite this 60M Pakistanis lack an official identity and are devoid of basic rights because of inaccessibility and complexity of the registration process. BRIEF Telenor aims to empower societies by connecting customers to what matters most, and to further this ambition of digital inclusion under United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly SDG #10: ‘Reduce Inequalities’ it wanted Pakistan to become a safer place for children by naming invisible Pakistanis. OBJECTIVES Expand DBR to 36 villages in Pakistan and register 500K unregistered children Reduce overall application time to 240 mins from 4230 mins (72 hrs ≈ 3 days) Ensure 100% registrations in all villages where DBR is implemented.

Describe the creative idea (20% of vote)

A transformative digital intervention was executed via an easy to use, android based mobile solution. It was put in the hands of authorized personnel, including health workers, marriage registrars who moved from house-to-house collecting key information and documents using a phone camera. Each application reached the authorities via the DBR app and the subject received a certificate on their phone upon approval from the government. Leveraging Telenor’s mobile financial services platform (Easypaisa), digital payments were made to facilitate the monthly distribution of incentives to over 10,200 community-based gatekeepers. Lady health workers partnered with local clerics to build credibility and a door-to-door drive was used to build word of mouth. Elaborate tutorials adapted to regional languages were used as training syllabus for end users; health workers, local administration employees and marriage registrars. Project messaging and campaign narratives were centered around the themes of civil rights, human rights and patriotism.

Describe the PR strategy (30% of vote)

Pakistanis are a deeply proud nation. Patriotism and national fervor run deep in an average Pakistani’s veins. Telenor Pakistan decided to anchor the birth registration initiative upon a nationalistic rhetoric, linking the identity of the invisible Pakistanis with the identity of the country as a whole and evoking a sense of void yet instilling passion for inclusion among the non-registered citizens. Insight, ‘While I contribute to my economy, I'm devoid of any benefits of ‘being Pakistani’ - So I choose to include’. Giving this humanitarian crisis a nationalistic spin ensured that the issue became one of national importance and of interest to every Pakistani, especially our rural daily wage earner struggling to make ends meet. All marginalised, unregistered children and their parents from rural Sindh and Punjab remained our core demographic. These families have low digital literacy but have a low-end smart phone which they primarily use for social connection.

Describe the PR execution (20% of vote)

Telenor Pakistan alone mobilized 46 million of its customers to reregister their SIM cards against their CNIC, using straight-to-the point communications messages related to identity, such as, ‘Your SIM is your ID’; ‘You are from Pakistan – be proud of your identity’; and ‘Your thumb and your SIM are your identity’. The target audience was primarily the marginalized daily wage earners across rural Sindh and Punjab. Pakistan’s most populous provinces with low birth registration rates, low literacy rates, least TV viewership and access to electricity. A door-to-door drive was used to build word of mouth. This direct activation drive was active all year however household visits peaked during months of high birth rate. Campaign narratives were centered around civil rights (identity is an essential first step in providing rights to citizens), human rights (identity is a basic human right) or sustainable development (identity contributes to reducing inequalities and promoting peace).

List the results (30% of vote)

• Highest ever earned mentions for Telenor, 80% positive • Coverage by renowned local and international media, UN agencies, donors (GSMA, DIFID & the World Bank etc.) • 426 villages in Pakistan are DBR enabled (1083% more than planned). • 1.2+ million children are no longer invisible; 50% out of those are girls (140% Target vs. Achievement) • Registration time reduced to 10 mins • Less than 1% of the applications have been rejected by government (9% better acceptance rate than planned) • The Government plans to scale DBR to 36 more districts • One district will soon reach universal birth registration a first in Pakistan’s history • Due to the subsequent uplift of these provinces Telenor also earned data revenue of PKR 15.8 million in 2020 & avg. revenue per user in DBR enabled districts has increased by 100% • DBR has also successfully piloted in Myanmar


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