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Buro 24/7 Digital Awards 2018: What went down during our very special #BuroSocial dinner at Capital at Zouk

Cause for celebration

Text: Janice Sim


Video: David Bay
Image: Robin Thang

This year's Buro 24/7 Singapore's Digital Awards was presented in the form of an extraordinary dinner in a club

It was a Wednesday night and Team Buro found ourselves frolicking at Capital Zouk Singapore. As much as we'd have loved to, we weren't captialising on Ladies Night. Believe it or not, we were pulling off a greater mission — the Buro 24/7 Singapore Digital Awards 2018 that is. This year marks our third edition.

And the results are in. We couldn't have done it without you lovely people who voted, alongside the judging panel (comprising of last year's winners of Best Male and Female Influencer, Nat Ho and Rosalyn Lee, as well as a few members of the Buro team).

Buro Digital Awards 2018

But was the night just a yawnfest of speeches and plaques? Far from that. We couldn't let a crucial event like this go down without a snazzy #BuroSocial dinner. So we mixed things up, and married two of our grandest occasions into one epic night.

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

In attendance? A headcount of this year's talented nominees, all of which have made an impact in the digital world within their respective fields. The table set? Lavishly adorned with gleaming silverware and petal arrangements from Floral Magic. Centered in none other than the intimate dance floor of Capital Zouk (sans the pulsating house beats and flickering strobe lights), let's just say — it was a different kind of night out in da club. To get in on the main action, watch our video below. 

We took our seats, reunited with familiar faces and made a couple of new friends. As convivial conversations flowed freely, so did the booze. Our friends at EC Proof certainly didn't hold back with two inventive cocktails: a Citadelle Original gin spiked with fresh citrus, brewed tea, and Prosecco, as well as a refreshing Rebel Yell whiskey concoction of citrus, honey, and spiced tea syrup. 

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Alongside delicious tipples, our dinner commenced with a delectable spread from Luxe Catering. First up, an amuse bouche platter with the likes of blue crab remoulade tarts, potato fritters adorned with ahi tuna, and mushroom croquettes. Sophisticated yet pronounced flavours continued to follow through — in the heavyweight mains of a French braised duck, a seared Atlantic salmon in white wine sauce, and a veal ragout. Not forgetting, the sweet, sweet finale of artisan pralines and milk chocolate spheres encased with a generous serving of mousse. 

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Seeing as we’re fabulous multitaskers, Buro 24/7 Singapore's Digital Awards 2018 played out all at the same time. We laughed, 'Grammed and concluded the night with more refills and a couple of new followers.

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Congrats once again to Gemma Goh (Most Inspiring Travel Feed), Teresa Lim (Most Creative Feed), The Social Co. (Best Social Changemaker), Alcheme (Best Digital Start-Up), and Furqan Saini (Best Fashion-Forward Feed). If you aren’t already following them on Instagram or supported their services, it’s about time to. Of course, the winners weren’t allowed to leave just yet; not before they each took home a T2 Flask (plus a box of their signature Breakfast Tea), Jyunka's Ultra Defence SPF 50, Ultra Peptide Lifting Mask and a treatment voucher, a stunning Tumi Latitude Cabin Luggage, and a smooth ride in one of ŠKODA’s newest cars. That folks, is what we call the Buro send-off.

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Buro Digital Awards 2018

GEMMA GOH (@flyawayg) | MOST INSPIRING TRAVEL FEED

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Tell us about the last memorable trip you took.
It would have to be Iran last August, with a very heavy travel enthusiast friend. It was memorable because we were able to see Iran for ourselves. If I were to tell anyone about Iran, the first question I always get is, "Is it safe?! Are you girls going to be okay?" I would like to break that stigma. It's one of the most friendly countries, with the friendliest people I've ever visited.

Sounds amazing. What's your favourite thing to capture during your travels?
Obviously, through the medium of my phone and my camera, I love to capture buildings, people, and the food that I eat. I think it's a very impactful way to tell a story — one that brings people to an imaginary world that they've never been. They see the place through my eyes. 

Tell us about a lesson that the digital age has taught you so far.
It's freedom. I feel that you're free to do anything and everything. It's possible for anyone to bring an idea about. Because somebody else, even from another world or community, might share the same beliefs and same ideas as you. You might change, or encourage them to do the same thing. Hopefully, it's always going to be a positive change.

In your own words, how do you think Instagram has influenced the modern-day traveller?
I think the ability to see the world, is its biggest powerful tool. I myself, have learnt and discovered other places through other travel feeds. So, for me to be able to do that through Instagram is really encouraging and it makes me want to keep my passion alive. 

TERESA LIM (@teeteeheehee) | MOST CREATIVE FEED

Buro Digital Awards 2018

What inspires you?
Inspiration comes in different forms. But for me, I'm very interested in telling stories. I feel that any art, or image without a story behind it, has no meaning. So stories are definitely my source of inspiration. 

What are you currently working on at the moment? 
At the moment, I'm working on a lot of projects (some of which I can't name yet). But one side project that I'm working on now involves the use of plastics. I'm trying to recycle little bits of plastics and use them into my artwork. 

How has Instagram influenced or benefited your craft in any way?
Without Instagram or social media, I wouldn't have been able to reach a lot of people internationally. It has connected me with so many opportunities with brands and clients, and I got to meet many amazing people to collaborate with.

Tell us about a lesson that the digital age has taught you so far.
Not to compare yourself with someone else, because you don't know what is real out there. And you don't know what struggles the other person has, so there's no point comparing yourself to another person that you don't know online. 

REBEKAH LIN AND CHERYL CHONG, CO-FOUNDERS OF THE SOCIAL CO. | BEST SOCIAL CHANGEMAKER

Buro Digital Awards 2018

You've won Best Social Changemaker; what led you on this path and how has the journey been like so far? 
Rebekah Lin (RL):
For us, we don't see it as a job, we see it as a responsibility. We've always felt very lucky and blessed, so we want to do what we can do give back in any way possible. The reason why we chose senior care is because we're not going to be gone in two or three years, we want to be here in 10 or 20 years. We believe that this is something that requires a mindset shift. A simple question we ask: "Why do we not spend enough time with our parents or grandparents although we know that our time together is limited?"
Cheryl Chong (CC): It's been really encouraging, and quite fulfilling in the work that we do at The Social Co.; whether it's raising awareness or raising funds for charity.

With this cause, what do you hope to achieve in the future? 
CC: We like to first start with bridging communication gaps. As we go along, we want to learn more from people who have already been doing good work in that sector. 

What are the benefits of going digital for you guys? 
RL: We recently did a project with Samsung, and it's something as easy as trying to share the Peranakan heritage with our younger generation. Without using Instagram or Facebook, we wouldn't be able to so freely share the Peranakan museum or the restaurant, which young people would have to physically visit in order to know more about. We see the digital playground as a way to connect with the young. 

CC: I think going digital is also beneficial in a sense that it's scalable. I think elder care isn't just an issue in Singapore for example, it's a global issue. Learning from the Scandinavian countries and from Japan, this can be done through digital platforms and exchanging ideas. What has worked for us, is also the amplification of impact and awareness. 

Tell us about a lesson that the digital age has taught you so far.
RL:  There's still so much to learn about the digital age, whether it's social media marketing or search engine optimisation. We have reached out to an audience that we didn't even think that we were reaching out to. For instance, we intended to reach out to the young and then they proceeded to share about us with their parents and grandparents. That's eventually our end goal — something that is shareable. 

CC: That authentic communication is even more important, now that we're in the digital age. It's so fast-paced that you don't want to leave anyone behind and you don't want to see that communication gap getting wider and wider.

CONSTANCE MANDEFIELD AND TUYEN LAMY, CO-FOUNDERS OF ALCHEME | BEST DIGITAL START-UP

Buro Digital Awards 2018

How did the idea for Alcheme first come about?
Tuyen Lamy (TL): We have been working in skincare for the past 12 years; there's always these elaborate routines, which skincare brands would recommend to fulfil all of your skincare needs. As busy women, we thought there had to be a better way than to just layer products. Personalisation is actually the solution to that. Instead of adding product by product, you put all the right ingredients for your skin into one product; it just makes your life simpler and skincare routine more efficient. 

Constance Mandefield (CM): The feedback we got from customers that were interested in the concept of personalisation was the question of how accurate the product would be for the individual's skin. How do I know if it's the right one for me? So we came back with the idea of online consultation with facial recognition, which was a way to engage customers when it came to their own skincare needs.

What are the advantages or disadvantages with going digital, compared to the traditional brick-and-mortar way of doing skincare?
CM: The advantage is that for any woman, it's very easy to go online whenever you want and get personalised products. You don't have to face beauty advisors who sometimes ask you uncomfortable questions. The disadvantage is that it puts a barrier between the product and the person, because everything is online and there is no personal touch. We compensate for this by checking all the different consultations that we get on the website, and engaging the customers on a one-to-one relationship whether it's through emails or WhatsApp, to make sure that they get the right product and right ingredients.

What is a piece of advice you would give to anyone who wants to start their own business?
TL:
To know your own strengths and weaknesses. Then partner with people who are very complementary to you because you can't be alone the whole way.

CM: It's also about listening to your prospects and customers because sometimes you have the greatest idea in mind but people don't understand it. So it's about getting people to understand what you're trying to do. 

Tell us about a lesson that the digital age has taught you so far. 
TL:
Traditionally, people think you have to be face-to-face in order to connect and understand a person's skincare needs. But what we're trying to do in a digital age is to bring that proximity without that physical interaction. Because we do believe that if you're able to express your needs, by just sending a picture to us, we can actually fulfil that need without having that physical presence. 

FURQAN SAINI (@in3pid) | BEST FASHION-FORWARD FEED

Buro Digital Awards 2018

Name your personal style in three words. 

Design. Quality. Longevity. 

Who is your style role model?
Oh my god. Can I say Britney Spears? I'm kidding. Can I say Lindsay Lohan? No seriously, I really love Alain Delon. He's not what I would wear, but what I personally love about him is his effortless style. 

Tell us about a lesson that the digital age has taught you so far.
The digital age has taught me that it's all about disruption. It has shaken off the roofs of legacy companies and legacy brands, and I think it's about time that they catch up with what's happening in the digital age. Because it's all about disruption and it's all about change.

How has Instagram influenced the world of fashion?
I think what Instagram has done for the world of fashion is that it has opened borders. Designers who used to be so far-flung and unreachable, now seem abit more real and accessible. And it's not just across fashion, we're talking about singer and actors — you get access into their lives and you find out what's happening with them. I think it comes down to humanity's intrinsic love for kaypoh-ness (laughs).

A fashion-forward feed always seems to be so glamorous, filled with beautiful locations and designs. Can you tell us the secret of what really goes behind a stunning photo, or rather what's the craziest thing you've ever done to get a good shot?
I do wish I was a daredevil, like some guys who hang out at rooftops and shoot really beautiful photos. But for me, the craziest thing I've ever done was to hide behind my block and to shoot behind the brick walls. That is my go-to backdrop. 

Get an inside look at all our other #BuroSocial dinners.

 

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