Cannes Lions

HUL - #BreakTheChain

OGILVY INDIA, Mumbai / UNILEVER / 2020

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Overview

Background

India witnessed its first COVID-19 case on Jan 7th, 2020 and by March end the country was looking at a nationwide lockdown. Panic struck the nation. Uncertainty, fear and anxiety were spreading faster than the virus itself.

For over 80 years, Hindustan Unilever (HUL) the Indian subsidiary of Unilever had been enriching the lives of Indian consumers by offering everyday products right from personal care to home care to food and beverages. So, when the pandemic struck, HUL being present in 9 out of 10 Indian households only found it fitting to support the government and the nation during these testing times. By leveraging its strong network of partnerships and establishing some more pan-India, it brought to the nation, at this historical time, the support it needed.

Idea

Our challenge: achieve awareness, change behaviour by instantly connecting with 1.3B people from 29 states, speaking 22 languages.

Behavioural Science’s Framing Bias states ‘presenting information using points of comparison, dramatically increases meaning and engagement.

#Breakthechain, drew analogies to 3 acts of India’s Independence movement to define 3 acts of unity to break the virus chain. We heightened impact with real footage.

ACTS FROM INDIA’S INDEPENDENCE MOVEMENT -> ACTS OF UNITY TO #BREAKTHECHAIN

We stepped outside our homes to fight and won our freedom -> We need to stay at home to win our freedom from the virus

With clenched fists and raised hands we won freedom -> We need to wash our hands to free ourselves from the virus

We spun the charkha with our hands and won our freedom -> We need to extend our hands to help the needy and win this war against the virus

Strategy

Crafting the right message is one thing. But getting that message across to a billion people efficiently was the main job to be done. Everything had to work like clockwork – dependably done and in a timely manner. For this to succeed, HUL harnessed and activated the expanse of partnership it had established across the country. A strong media partnership with popular TV channels and digital platforms like Facebook, YouTube and Instagram helped HUL gain traction for the campaign and reach out to the masses. To support the mass media campaign, HUL also planned out a bunch of interventions on ground. They focused on 3 broad areas that needed the utmost and immediate attention:

#1 Healthcare Support

#2 Food Donations

#3 Product Donation

Execution

Within a fortnight from India’s PM enforcing a lockdown, HUL committed Rs100crore (nearly $14million) to serve the nation and deploy several interventions.

We created short, inspiring 15-seconder TV films. We also created 6-seconder digital edits to drive reach. HUL’s media partnerships with Sony, Star, YouTube, Facebook and Instagram supported our awareness drive.

The films were followed through with an array of supporting, efficiently carried out on-ground interventions for which HUL got a cross-functional team of its leaders from factories, supply chains, human resources, communications, and healthcare to plan COVID-19 interventions with experts from 30+ multilateral organizations.

•Donations of essentials with Save the children and UNHCR;

•Strengthening healthcare infrastructure with Apollo Hospitals, Lemon Tree, OYO and State Bank of India;

•Healthcare awareness campaign for community frontline workers with UNICEF;

•Magnifying impact in local communities with a plethora of local NGOs like United Way, WASH Institute, WaterAid, Save The Children, Shelter Associates.

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