Memac Ogilvy Wins Gold at the UAE Young Lions Digital Competition 2021

Moemen Metwally and Fernando Montero from Memac Ogilvy Dubai win gold at the UAE Young Lions Digital Competition 2021.


The 18th edition of the esteemed UAE Young Lions Digital Competition, hosted by Motivate Media Group and Motivate Val Morgan – the official UAE representative of the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, took place on Saturday 27th March 2021.

Due to the ongoing pandemic, this year’s competition took place online, with a total of 14 teams across 9 agencies participating. The Judging and Awards Ceremony followed online on Monday 29th March 2021, with Moemen Metwally and Fernando Montero from Memac Ogilvy Dubai winning Gold.

The winning duo will move on to represent the UAE at the International Young Lions Competition – in the digital category, which will also take place online in June 2021.


Moemen Metwally & Fernando Montero from Memeac Ogilvy wins Gold at the UAE Young Lions Digital Competition 2021


Gold Winning Submission by Memac Ogilvy at the UAE Young Lions Digital Competition 2021


Warsha Jamnadas and Nour Itani from Publicis Middle East bagged Silver, while Tarryn Tucker and Luma Kudsiova from BPG Group Dubai, and Lina Maria Monroy and Alison Cordeiro Rodriguez from Saatchi & Saatchi Dubai tied for Bronze.


Silver Winning Submission at the UAE Young Lions Digital Competition 2021


Bronze Winning Submission at the UAE Young Lions Digital Competition 2021


Bronze Winning Submission at the UAE Young Lions Digital Competition 2021


Other participating agencies at this year’s competition included: Leo Burnett Dubai, Socialize, And Us, Serviceplan Middle East and FP7 McCann.

The jury panel for this year’s competition comprised of: Munah Zahr (Leo Burnett), Fadi Yaish (And Us), Cristiano Tonnarelli (Memac Ogilvy), Komal Bedi Sohal (Saatchi & Saatchi Dubai), Fouad Malak and Oliver Robinson (F7P McCann), Rafael Augusto (Publicis Middle East), Akhilesh Bagri (Serviceplan Middle East), Anyce Nedir (Socialize), and Lousie Kotze and Justin Du Plessis (BPG Group Dubai)

This year’s client was du Telecommunications, who presented a brief pertaining to cybercrime in the UAE. Participating teams were asked to create a digital campaign with a powerful message and fitting hashtag, to emphasize the importance of the internet being utilized wisely and safely, with the necessary precautions in place.

Speaking at the Award ceremony on behalf of du Telecommunications, Dr. Mansoor Habib, Head of Sustainability & Wellbeing, said: “At du, our mission is to create a culture that addresses safe internet usage and related issues such as cyber bullying, digital addiction, and the wellbeing of everyone that uses our telecommunication services. We are very honored that we could introduce the theme of cyber safety at this year’s UAE Young Lions Digital Competition to brief all the participating agencies. The creative insight of the participants – all of which were very unique and powerful – helped us understand how much more innovative we can be with our communication on using the internet safely and responsibly.”

Ian Fairservice – Managing Partner, Motivate Media Group, said “Even though the format for the UAE Young Lions Competition had to be adjusted to an online version this year, we were still very impressed with the content produced. I want to congratulate everyone who entered, but especially Moemen Metwally and Fernando Montero from Memac Ogilvy who I’m sure will be great ambassadors for the UAE during this year’s Cannes Lions Festival.”

The UAE Young Lions Digital Competition 2021 was held in strategic partnership with Dubai Media City and was sponsored by Getty Images.

Congratulations to the winners and a job well done to all 14 teams who participated in this year’s competition.



Ramadan Ads | Middle East | 2020

Ramadan is a month of spirituality, downtime, and is also an eventful period for the ad world – similar to a month-long Super Bowl extravaganza.

Ramadan ad spots present an opportunity for advertisers and consumers to enjoy the most coveted advertising efforts of the year, for the ads usually focus more on the themes of the holy month than the individual product itself.

We haven’t seen that many Ramadan ads from across the Middle East this year, may be due to the coronavirus pandemic. Nonetheless, here’s a glimpse of the campaigns that did release, keeping the tradition alive.


 Careem Bahrain

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No matter how much the world changes around us, our Ramadan values and traditions always remain. Our family gatherings, the food we love, Ramadan decorations, the TV shows we all wait for & the shared value of giving during this holy month to keep us together and bring us closer. Ramadan Careem ??✨ . . العالم يتغير حولنا كل يوم , لكن لذّة رمضان تكتمل بقيمنا وعاداتنا وتقاليدنا التي تعودنا عليها . تجمعاتنا العائلية ، صوت المدفع الذي يجمع الكل على سفرة الطعام ، زينة رمضان المبهجة، البرامج التلفزيونية و المسلسلات التي ننتظرها جميعًا وأهمية العطاء المتبادل بين الجميع خلال هذا الشهر المبارك. لتبقينا سويا و تقربنا أكثر. رمضان كريم ??✨

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Bahrain Tourism and Exhibitions Authority (BTEA)

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لتبقى روح الشهر الفضيل كما هي ? مبارك عليكم الشهر وكل عام وانتم بخير ✨ The spirit of the holy month will remain the same. ? Stay safe. Ramadan Kareem. ✨ __________________________________ #BahrainOursYours #البحرين #رمضان_الأسرة

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Fairy Arabia


Comfort Arabia




Qatar Airways














Hyundai MEA


Etihad Airways





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✨? ? سعداء بمواصلة واجبنا تجاه مختلف فئات المجتمع خلال رمضان، لا سيما في ظل الظروف الاستثنائية التي نشهدها جميعاً، حيث قدمنا الهدايا لحمالية سوق واقف وفقاً للاشتراطات الاحترازية ووسائل الوقاية اللازمة. #عطاء_متواصل_في_شهر_الخير #هدايا_Ooredoo ✨?? Proud to have been able to continue our support for our local communities this #Ramadan, especially in such difficult times. We delivered Ramadan gifts to labourers at Souq Waqif Hamaliah , According to preventive measures #GivingMoreInRamadan #HadayaOoredoo #Ooredoo

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Sources: YouTube, Instagram and Campaign Middle East

Ads from the Middle East in Response to COVID-19

Brands have a huge role to play during these uncertain times of COVID-19.

A recent study conducted by Edelman has revealed that as well as offering new products and services that specifically target pandemic-related life challenges, brands have an important role to play as communicators.

The study also showed that what people most want to see from brands at the moment is tangible and helpful action. Transparency, empathy and compassion being paramount!

The majority of people in the study also indicated that how well a company responds to the coronavirus crisis, will have a huge impact on their likelihood of buying from it in the future. Many, too, have started using a new brand because of the innovative or compassionate way the brand has behaved since the pandemic began.

So with no manual for these uncertain times, how have brands handled this new norm of advertising? While some have withdrawn from the scene in a crisis, others have seized the opportunity to reach out to the community and stay relevant.

From heart-warming and comforting ads, to Ramadan-centric, storytelling and informative ads, here’s a list of must-watch video brand campaigns from across the Middle East:


Till We Meet Again – Visit Dubai


Abu Dhabi: Stay Home, Stay Safe, Stay Curious – Visit Abu Dhabi


Ode to Empty Roads – Nissan Middle East


Do You Remember – Emirates


We Are One – Expo 2020 Dubai


A Message From Expo 2020 Dubai – Expo 2020 Dubai


A World We Deserve – Babyshop


Proud of You – Bank Dhofar


Ramadan Lives On – stc Kuwait


Stay Home. We Deliver – Domino’s


#StayHome – Honda


#Homemade_Ramadan – du


Thank you Heroes! – Cafu


Ramadan 2020 | An Ooredoo Story – Oooredoo


Together In Spirit – MG Middle East


Our colleagues and partners…We miss you and we’ll see you soon – TECOM Group


Covid-19: Preventive Measures – Motivate Val Morgan



Source: Edelman, Campaign Middle East and YouTube

Consumer Trends Making Cinema Advertising More Impactful Than Ever!

Cinema is appealing to a more diverse group of consumers than ever before, making it an attractive platform for many brands to utilize. In order to ensure brands reach and engage their target audience effectively with their cinema promotion, there are certain consumer trends to be kept in mind, considering their potential impact on the outcome of a campaign.


The following article was published on LinkedIn by Casey Story – Organization Development Professional | Learning & Development Specialist | Sales Trainer & Coach

Kurt Wagner
from Recode Media wrote an article stating that, “2019 will mark the first-time digital ad spend in the US outpaces TV and print combined.” Marketers will attest to this trend as there is a noticeable change in expectations among clients. Media planning conversations use to focus mostly around aspects including: Audience, engagement, reach, recall, like-ability, however the stakes have been shifting since 2008. Which most will remember as the year we all started walking around with cash registers in our pockets (personal smartphones).

Shifting of expectations from brands are steering agencies and media sales professionals to steer towards a ‘Positive Business Outcome’ approach to their media strategy. These teams are now focused on identifying the right consumers, reaching them in the right environment, engaging with them at the right time, and on the right devices to achieve and prove delivery of the KPI’s set forth by their clients.

While digital advertising allows brands to achieve several of these key components in the new outcome-based approach to planning, there are several considerations including: identifying the right consumers, reaching them in the right environment and engaging with them at the right time, that must still be supported by other channels in the traditional media space.

The following are three US consumer trends in 2019/2020 that make cinema advertising a more viable channel than ever to support brand goals:


Subscription Movie Going is Still Alive

Similar to blockbuster, taxi services and the music industry, the movie going industry did not feel a major disruption of their consumer’s expectations for a long period of time. The model was straightforward: negotiate with studios to fill theaters and auditoriums with blockbuster hits, sell tickets and concessions, invest in capital improvements that enhance the overall experience if/when needed. The main purpose was that the content on screen should be enough to encourage consumers to spend $10-20 dollars per ticket to see the films. Here’s where MoviePass makes its entrance.

The long-term arithmetic reflected in MoviePass’ model made it clear that without improved compensation from the circuits, the company was working on both borrowed time and money. As we know, the negotiation never happened, and MoviePass has been written down by its holding company.

The low-cost subscription model that MoviePass introduced however dramatically changed the consumer expectation regarding the cost of going to the movies. For the first time in years the exhibitors (Cinemark, Regal, AMC) have had to adjust their pricing strategy and are introducing subscription plans of their own. These actions have been well received by consumers. AMC recently announced that since launching their Stubbs A-List program (a $19.95 monthly subscription) in June of 2018, they have enrolled over 700,000 members.

This trend is important for advertisers considering cinema campaigns, because the data shows that when consumers have access to lower priced movie tickets, they see more movies. In the same article published in Variety, AMC noted that Stubbs A-List members had accounted for over 14 million movie ticket sales in the same amount of time.

Cinemark, Regal, and regional affiliates throughout the US are all working to finalize or develop their own subscription-based models to adapt to this shift in consumer expectation. What this means for advertisers is that passionate movie goers, those same consumers that drive 73% of spending in the US will be coming out in record numbers to their local movie theaters throughout 2019 because for the first time in years, they have a more affordable way of doing so.


Hollywood’s Franchise Era

The question, “When will Hollywood introduce us to new stories?” often rings in the minds of movie-goers alike. Ben Fritz’s book The Big Picture – The Fight for the Future of Movies answers this and discusses Hollywood’s shift towards the ‘franchise movie model’.

The reality is most consumers want two things when they choose to go to the movies:

Consumers may argue that they would prefer more adult dramas, romantic comedies, horror films, etc. However, the facts (historical ticket sales), reveal otherwise.

Looking at 2019’s slate of films, it is safe to say that we are in the heart of the Hollywood franchise era. The opportunities to experience something larger than life and culturally relevant are already driving record box office sales.

Captain Marvel (2019) made a total of $1,126,129,839 at the Worldwide Box Office. While remakes of popular Disney classics have been making cinema rounds. Classics such as: Dumbo made a total of $347,866,307 since its release in March 2019. Cinema-goers have also witnessed a rise in live-action remakes of popular Disney films this year, with movies such as The Lion King which made a whooping $1,638,761,919 at the box-office (to date). Whereas, the live-action version Aladdin’s live action version made a total of $1,037,017,346 since its release in May 2019.

From the Marvel Universe, the concluding film of the franchise- Avengers: End Game broke records at the box-office banking a total of$2,795,473,000 and continued to run in cinemas for 20 weeks across cinemas in the US.

The last quarter of the year holds great promise for the box office with mega sequels such as Frozen II, Jumanji: The Next Level and the concluding film of the Star Wars series: Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker soon to release across cinemas worldwide.

Advertisers considering cinema campaigns should look closely at the historical success of the franchise model in domestic ticket sales. In the last four years, the highest grossing movies yearly in the US have come from within a franchise. This trend appears to continue throughout 2019. With the increased occurrence that moviegoers will be visiting theaters due to: Lower priced subscription service tickets and quality of content, advertisers have a unique opportunity to extend their reach among this audience year round.


Content Marketing: A Driving Force for Customer Connections

As digital spending eclipses traditional media spend this year, the digital marketplace has certainly become increasingly noisy. When adopting a positive business outcome marketing strategy, the goal is less about a brand’s ability to yell louder and more often than their competition. The goal, hence must shift, and brands must identify innovative ways to engage with their audience in an authentic manner, a trend that is leading the shift toward content marketing.

There are generally two approaches to developing a content marketing strategy:

When a brand has done well adopting either strategy, they pull their audience to their message instead of simply pushing more content into an already crowded marketplace. The impressions delivered from a content marketing strategy are much more valuable because customers actively seek out the content and actively share the message to other, like-minded, potential consumers.

Cinema is one of the last channels available for brands to tell an authentic story, at scale, in an environment with no ad skipping devices, and in front of consumers looking to be entertained.

Content marketing pieces delivered in this environment cut through the noise. Campaigns resonate with consumers, and the transparency of the cinema platform provides piece of mind for brands seeking to reclaim bot served impressions and eliminate wastage of advertising resources.


Are these trends similar in the Middle East?

Movie Ticket Offers

Leading cinema chains in the Middle East have tied up with mobile network providers (Example – du and Etisalat in UAE), offering cinemagoers to buy one movie ticket and get the other free. Similarly, numerous banks also provide customers a range of Debit and Credit card offers to availing movie-ticket and/or a free upgrade on the size of popcorn and beverages at the candy counter. Certain bank cards also offer moviegoers a buy 1 get one get one free movie ticket deal.

Such offers affirm the fact that when consumers have access to lower priced movie tickets, the frequency of cinema visits increase.


Love for Franchise Films

The craze among movie-goers for popular franchise films isn’t limited to the United States alone. Cinema statistics in the Middle East reveal the love and commitment among movie-goers in the region.


Following are statistics of UAE admissions for MEGA blockbuster franchise films:


Captain Marvel (2019)

Captain Marvel Movie Poster 2019


Ran for 12 weeks and did over 425K admissions


Dumbo (2019)

Dumbo Movie Poster 2019


Ran for 12 weeks and did over 180K admissions


The Lion King (2019)

The Lion King Movie Poster 2019


Did over 697K admissions in the first 8 weeks since release

*The movie is still screening across select cinemas in the UAE


Avengers: End Game (2019)

Avengers- End Game Movie Poster 2019


Ran for 15 weeks and did over 848K admissions


Cinema Experiences like Never Before

A number of cinema chains in the Middle East offer unique cinema experiences – thus catering to the increasing demand by cinemagoers to watch movies like never-seen before. Audiences can now enjoy the latest blockbusters on mega screens such as IMAX, MAX, Dolby Cinema, nibble on gourmet delights at Dine-in Cinemas or opt for a luxury experience such as Gold by Rhodes, Theatre by Rhodes and Platinum Suites, while lounging in a comfy reclining seats, or dive into action on with 4DX and ScreenX.

VOX Cinemas recently launched a concept of ‘Distraction- Free Cinema’ to ensure cinemagoers immerse themselves entirely in the cinematic experience by tuning out all the distractions from theatres which include: no use of mobile phones or smartwatches, no late arrivals and no guests under the age of 18. Ninja-like staff are on surveillance inside the cinema throughout the screening.


In summary….


As price discovery, consumer targeting capabilities continue to improve the effectiveness of a brand’s digital execution, it’s important for marketers to identify the channels that allow them to reach a brand’s right consumer, in the right environment, at the right time, with a creative and authentic message.

Based on the forecast of movies, the trends in consumer behavior, and a shift in how brands are building relationships with their audience, there has never been a better time to double down in the cinema space.



Source: LinkedIn,, AdAge, The Numbers, MVM Statistics


UAE National Day | Cinema Campaigns | 2018

United Arab Emirates celebrated 47 glorious years as a nation on 02nd December 2018.

National Day is one of the most celebrated days in the country – as it marks the historical moment when the seven emirates came together to form one country, and this year took on even greater importance having been labelled the ‘Year of Zayed’ which marks 100 years since the birth of UAE’s founding father late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.

To honour and celebrate the nation’s leadership, progress, history and values, leading brands in the UAE launched cinema campaigns across the country.


Dubai Holding

Dubai Holding commemorated the legacy of the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan with a comprehensive campaign highlighting his enduring values that have shaped today’s nation –inclusiveness, tolerance and humanity.

The campaign launched on 27th November 2018 with a video being broadcasted on television, in cinema and promoted online via social media.

A 60 sec. on-screen ad was booked through Motivate Val Morgan to screen from 27th November03rd December 2018 at the following cinema locations:


VOX Cinemas – City Centre Mirdif, Mercato Mall

Reel Cinemas – The Dubai Mall

Roxy Cinemas – City Walk

Abu Dhabi

VOX Cinemas – YAS Mall Abu Dhabi



Centrepoint – GCC’s biggest and most coveted multi-brand retailer, launched a national day campaign titled ‘United by Harmony’, which pays tribute to the UAE (home to over 200 nationalities) and celebrates the spirit of tolerance, diversity and unity.

As one of Motivate Val Morgan’s loyal clients for many years, Centrepoint ran a 1 min 42 sec. on-screen ad (in both English and Arabic) from 29th November05th December 2019 at the following cinema locations:


Cinemacity – Arabian Center

Roxy Cinemas – City Walk

Reel Cinemas – The Dubai Mall

VOX Cinemas – City Centre Mirdif and Mall of the Emirates


Cinemacity – Zero 6 Mall

Abu Dhabi

Cine Royal Cinema – Dalma Mall

VOX Cinemas – Nation Towers and YAS Mall


ADNOC (Abu Dhabi National Oil Company) 

ADNOC launched a community campaign titled ‘Remembering 47 Wonderful Years Together’ – a social media-focused storytelling program designed to evoke cherished memories of life in UAE.

The campaign kicked off with the official launch of ADNOC’s special National Day tribute video ‘Memories’ – unveiled at ADNOC’s Headquarters for its employees. The video has been described as a powerful, historical and endearing visual pastiche of life in Abu Dhabi and the broader UAE.

The video was advertised online, as well as in cinemas across the UAE – helping to raise awareness for the campaign and to remind citizens, residents and visitors of what makes life in the seven emirates so unique.

A 60 sec. on-screen ad was booked through Motivate Val Morgan from 27th November 201804th December 2018 at the following cinema locations:


Reel Cinemas – The Dubai Mall and Dubai Marina Mall

Roxy Cinemas – City Walk

Cinemacity – Arabian Center

VOX Cinemas – City Centre Deira, City Centre Mirdif, Mercato Mall, Mall of the Emirates, and Cineplex Grand Hyatt

Abu Dhabi

Cine Royal Cinema – Deerfields Mall, Khalidiyah Mall, Ruwais Mall, and Dalma Mall

VOX Cinemas – YAS Mall, Nation Towers and Marina Mall

Al Ain

Oscar Cinema – Al Foah Mall, Al Raha Mall and Al Wahda Mall 


Oscar Cinema – Al Shaab Village

VOX Cinemas – City Centre Sharjah


VOX Cinemas – City Centre Ajman

Ras Al Khaimah

VOX Cinemas – Al Hamra Mall


VOX Cinemas – City Centre Fujairah



du, the fastest growing mobile communications and technology provider in the UAE, launched a campaign titled ‘#UAEBlessings’ – inviting people from all corners of the country to recognise the astonishing feats and contributions of the country’s founding fathers and visionary leaders.

Centering on four key pillars of Happiness, Harmony, Safety, and Opportunity, the video restates how lucky are the people of UAE to live and thrive in the land of endless opportunity. It also aims to evoke feelings of admiration and warmth citizens experience for the homeland every day.

du booked a 30 sec. on-screen ad through Motivate Val Morgan from 07th December 12th December 2018 at all locations operated by VOX Cinemas in the UAE.


Contact a member of our sales team for more information on cinema advertising opportunities to mark special occasions in 2019.



Sources: Emirates Business, Emirates News Agency, Behance, du and YouTube

Dubai Lynx Names Du as 2018 Advertiser of the Year

UAE telco du has been named as 2018’s Dubai Lynx Advertiser of the Year. The prestigious award is presented annually to an advertiser in the MENA region who sets themselves apart through the calibre of their creative and innovative marketing and communications.

Over the past four years du has won 39 Dubai Lynx awards including 3 Grands Prix, 13 Gold, 16 Silver and 7 Bronze Dubai Lynx awards. Last year’s success alone included two Grands Prix in Integrated and Interactive for “#POSTWISELY”, a campaign that inspires the online community in the UAE to think before they post personal information on social channels.


Please note: The du commercials above are inspired by true stories that have occurred in the UAE or internationally.


“In recognising innovative marketing and inspiring creative communications the Advertiser of the Year Award focuses on the phenomenal talent, effort and the creative bravery displayed to bring ideas to life,” said Jose Papa, Managing Director, Cannes Lions. “du has proven to live its company mission to ‘enhance your life, anytime, anywhere’ through its engaging creative work and we’re delighted to be able to honour this and celebrate its continued success,” he continued.

Opened in 2006, du has constantly worked to enhance and expand the variety of services across the telecommunications industry for the millions of customers they serve in the MENA region. The company has over 2,000 people from more than 60 countries working to develop their services and is committed to reflecting the diversity of the public they serve. Alongside services such as telephony, data hubs and internet exchange facilities, du is dedicated to implementing sustainability practices across all aspects of the business.

The creative range of campaigns surrounding “du Tuesday” were hugely successful both with customers and at Dubai Lynx. Promoting a generous offer of 2 cinema tickets for the price of 1, the iterations of the campaign evolved over the years but consistently displayed excellence in craft, winning multiple Film Craft awards.

Abdulwahed Juma, Executive Vice President, Brand and Corporate Communications, du said, “We are deeply honoured and thrilled with this recognition. This is an endorsement of the outstanding creative calibre of our team in du and partner agencies. The win motivates us to continue our endeavours in reaching out to our customers in exciting and engaging ways.”

du will be presented with the Advertiser of the Year Award at the Dubai Lynx Awards Ceremony on 14 March 2018 in the Madinat Jumeirah. The celebration of the best creativity from across the MENA region brings to a close the three-day Festival of inspiration and learning.

The Awards Ceremony will see 10 jury presidents awarding the 2018 Lynx Awards along with the winners of the Young Lynx PR, Print, Integrated and Media competition and this year’s University of the Year. The Masar Student Creative Award for Print and the STC Student Integrated Competitions are announced at a dedicated Student Awards Ceremony on the final day of the Festival.

Entries to the Awards are now open with the deadline for entering on the 8 February 2018. Visit for more information.



Source: Dubai Lynx (Press Release) and du