Dentsu Creative Malaysia and Carat Media created Cheese Codes for gamers to order pizza IRT during the 2022 FIFA World Cup

Dentsu Creative Malaysia and Carat Media created Cheese Codes for gamers to order pizza IRT during the 2022 FIFA World Cup

The campaign via Dentsu Creative Malaysia took anticipation to the next level in FIFA Mobile, Football Manager and Top Eleven, and increased Pizza Hut Cheesy Poppers Pizza orders by 14%.


Brands that seize moments of engagement with real-time contextual brand experiences can captivate consumers during crucial purchase moments. In December, the 2022 FIFA World Cup became a battleground for QSR brands as traditional media spaces were cluttered with their ads and promos. This brought an unexpected marketing challenge for the annual Cheesy Poppers Pizza promo campaign – the fight for maximum share of voice.

Dentsu Creative Malaysia teamed up with Carat Media to change the playing field and play the game with a new audience. Data showed increased downloads of mobile football games including FIFA Mobile, Football Manager, and Top Eleven – nearly 1.2 million active gamers (and climbing). Enter gamers, a passionate and untapped audience who loved to recreate scorelines of live matches in the virtual world. Backed by this, we created ‘Cheese Codes’ for gamers to hack the beautiful game and get special Cheesy Poppers pizza combos.


“The World Cup is a prime period for any brand, and we understand the costs of battling competitors for a greater share of voice. Instead, we sought a strategic creative solution that showcased Dentsu Creative’s unified strength. Recognizing gamers’ aversion to traditional advertising, our idea seamlessly connected across relevant channels like Twitter to generate more buzz,” explained Kunal Roy, CEO of Dentsu Creative Malaysia.

Every time a goal was scored on live TV, a unique Cheese Code dropped on dynamic A-boards in mobile football games. Gamers could simply tap on the board to order limited-edition pizza combos in real life. The codes were created by combining player names with pizza toppings: MBAPPEPPERONI, CRISPIANO, MEZZIRELLA, NEYMARINARA, MODRICHILI, and so many more.

Andrew Low, Group CCO at Dentsu Creative Malaysia, said: “Our commitment to Modern Creativity compelled us to play a different game compared to our competitors. Football thrives in the real-time world. Our fan engagement campaign aimed to infiltrate real-time conversations for real-life conversions. This move paid off with boosted sales and enhanced brand sentiment—a win-win-win for us, the brand, and the consumers.”

As the World Cup progressed, the team concurrently tracked live games, selecting codes that would be relevant to the player that scores a goal. “This allowed us to stay current, break through the media chaos, with increased attention and engagement,” says Sid Nair, Creative Director at Dentsu Creative Malaysia.

Results: The campaign gained a significant share of voice, with Cheesy Poppers witnessing a 14% surge in sales in just twenty-five days. The campaign registered 8.4 million media impressions with a reach of 1.1 million unique viewers, and engaged over a million gamers.

The future of Pizza Hut & Gaming/ Emily Chong, CMO of Pizza Hut Malaysia, said: “The success of this campaign exceeded our personal and marketing expectations. The gamified approach and business results speak for themselves. We look forward to continuing to engage new customers in their own gaming worlds in 2023 and beyond.”

Kunal Roy – Chief Executive Officer,  Dentsu Creative Malaysia
Andrew Low – Group Chief Creative Officer
Sid Nair – Creative Director
Camilia Johari – Copywriter
Diyanah Poedjo – Designer
Rafique Ramleh – Senior Strategic Planner
Nicholas Corneilius – Social Media Director
Janine Wai – Business Director
Szen Li Cheam – Assistant Digital PR Manager
Amy Maisara Abdul Rahman – Senior Digital PR Executive
Claudia Monteiro – Senior Digital PR Executive
Wai Kin Ng – Senior Producer
Michelle Loo – Producer
Najwan Danil-Taridi – Motion Graphics Designer
Winnie Chen-Head – Partner, Head of Product & Growth, Carat
Vanitha Selvathurai – Partner, Head of Carat 
Mohamed Salim – Head of Strategy, Carat
Manpreet Kaur – Director, Client Leadership, Carat
Man Shin Yeong – Senior Executive, Media Planning, Carat

Totally Awesome 
Gary Fung – Regional Gaming Director
Accounts – Kieu Nguyen, Destinee Koh, Mitchel Vaz, Van Vo, Eleen Tay

Matt Blackholler – Director
Grace Cooke – Head of Operations

Antoine Clairet - Head of Demand
Eashen Rhodes – Head of Supply

Pizza Hut Malaysia
Emily Chong – Chief Marketing Officer
Jacelyn Lim – Assistant Brand Manager