Cannes Lions

Gerak: Democratizing Mobility for All Indonesians

MINDSHARE, Jakarta / REXONA / 2019

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As the country with the largest population in Southeast Asia, Indonesia is an extremely important market.

More investment dollars are being poured into the country and the government is spending on new infrastructure, as evident of the estimated $1.7 billion USD being spent on the MRT system.

Yet, despite all this investment and urbanization, Indonesia’s citizens with disabilities are being left behind. There are minimal legal and social pressures to promote non-discriminatory practices. Instead, people with disabilities are often considered an “embarrassment.”

In fact, in a country that’s so devoted to faith, a significant barrier for people with disabilities is the belief that disabilities are a punishment from God for sin. As if their disability is fate, leaving little room for empathy. There is nothing people can do to help.

This type of stigma affects the lifestyle of people with disabilities. They are not encouraged to develop, nor are they considered valuable members of the community.

It’s for these reasons why it was so important for Rexona to shine the spotlight on people with disabilities and educate everyone that there is something they can do to help.


Strong economic growth has lead to Indonesia’s rapid urbanization. Only 7 percent of Jakarta’s roads have sidewalks, but this is changing as development is abundant everywhere. However, this expansion has neglected Indonesians with disabilities, who are being left behind when it comes to inclusive infrastructure.

True to its brand DNA, Rexona used this insight to develop the idea for its Gerak app, Indonesia’s first ever voice-activated mobility assistant app. Gerak users could ask the app to find them the most accessible locations in their given area and with its Grab partnership (SE Asia’s leading ride hailing app) get an accessible ride.

With the app and the first ever database of accessible places at its core, Rexona developed its creative strategy around informing all Indonesians of this problem and building a grassroots movement, encouraging everyone to make Indonesia more accessible.

Rexona ensured people with disabilities would no longer be an afterthought.


Rexona had no interest in creating a traditional corporate social responsibility campaign. Once the brand decided they wanted to approach movement with a new lens, they turned to technology to solve the problem. Not just talk about it.

During Rexona’s research and customer interviews, one sentiment was repeated. People with disabilities were tired of being “second class citizens.” They were tired to getting “leftovers” as if that was good enough for them. They wanted their needs to be treated with equality, just like everyone else.

Rexona’s strategy was to bring people with disabilities into the forefront of the conversation. The Gerak app was built specifically for their needs. They were consulted on the design and during app development. Movement for Movement was not a “leftovers” campaign. It was dedicated to promoting equality and bringing real, tangible change to Indonesians with disabilities.


Rexona executed a cross-media strategy, with a focus on mobile video, to drive awareness, empathy, and action to Indonesians.

Rexona used sequential storytelling with its release of campaign videos. This started with a teaser video, outlining the problem in Jakarta. This was followed up with the app launch video, demonstrating how Gerak solved this problem.

At the Gerak app launch, Rexona and Grab (SE Asia’s largest ride-hailing app) partnered to maximize the reach of this purpose-lead initiative. Every major online publisher, social influencers, and news outlet picked up the movement, leading to a spike in social searches for “disability.”

Rexona expounded on the need for every Indonesian to take action, like adding to the database of accessible locations, with its Vice docu-series, driving awareness of the day-to-day difficulties people with disabilities endure.

Rexona’s sponsorship of the Asian Para-Games in Jakarta, along with its video celebrating movement, capped the impactful campaign.


Rexona’s Movement for Movement’s campaign successfully helped raise awareness around the difficulties Indonesians with disabilities face everyday as well as drive long-lasting change.

Rexona reached 60.52 million people when it launched the Gerak app and its $1 million USD worth of PR value was a 54x return on its launch investment.

Rexona’s Vice documentary exceeded expectations by 62%, as it was viewed 5.5 million times. Rexona’s three other mobile videos for the campaign combined for 15.4 million views, more than twice the expected benchmark.

Within the first 90 days of the app being live, Gerak was the #1 trending app in the “Travel and Local” category in the Google Play Store and nearly 20,000 GrabGerak rides were requested.

Most importantly, brand ad recall went up by 5%, best in class for the FMCG category, and earned a 150% uplift on brand interest.

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