Cannes Lions

Sons #ShareTheLoad


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With its prequels, ‘#ShareTheLoad’ and ‘Dads #ShareTheLoad’, Ariel placed the issue of gender inequality at home into the public consciousness. This movement went on to become not just the voice of millions of urban Indian women but also set a new category norm, where many household brands joined in on the conversation.

We knew that in our effort to wash away the cultural stain of gender inequality at home we were up-against deep-rooted socio-cultural norms that are holding back women from realising their complete potential inside and outside of home.

To continue Ariel’s mission, we realised our message needed to:

1.Be far more directional yet universal to advance the brand’s leadership position

2.Take this conversation wider, beyond middle-class households, to even the emerging class, as more women were stepping out of their homes to fulfil their own and their family’s ambitions of leading a better quality of life.


Ariel Sons #ShareTheLoad – a provocative social movement urging parents to rethink the way they raise their sons and see sharing the load of laundry as a symbolic step towards removing the cultural stain of gender inequality at home so that both sons and daughters realise their full potential.


This time around our challenge was two-fold: a) Go wider and deeper to bring about social change in emerging middle-class household too; b) offer a universal (for modern and conservative households) yet directional way forward that solves for the root-cause of gender inequality at home.

In our research with the ‘emerging’ urban women, we realised that her approach to balancing traditional and modern thinking was inclusive and empathetic, unlike a rebel, she delicately navigated these two worlds through the power of the collective – groups of women like her – who together champion change to thrive as a collective; something that is also reflected in popular mainstream shows and movies (eg: Ladies Special, English Vinglish, Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai)

This nuance guided our thinking and a mother’s journey of realisation and initiate to right the wrong become central to our narrative for Ariel Sons #ShareTheLoad.


We kickstarted the movement with a thought-provoking film about a mother’s realisation.

To maximise reach, we tapped into OTT platforms like Hotstar and Voot - well penetrated new-mediums of personalised entertainment.

To trigger conversations, we engaged leading parenting-platforms and bloggers like Mompresso and Babychakra. To take our message, deeper and wider, we took to the most popular public transport in India- rickshaws. Applying the principles of memory-structures, we added a simple line to the country’s most effective girl-child initiative –‘Educate the girl-child for national progress’ to ‘Educate sons about their role at home for societal progress’.

We also launched the ‘Ariel Son Washed Collection’, where we showcased proud mothers walking the ramp in clothes washed by their sons.

To go even further we released a laundry rap song for sons on TikTok and a learning module on Hello English–the world’s second largest linguistic app that reaches 7 million people.


•Global changemakers welcomed it at the World Economic Forum in Davos and gender equality advocates like Sheryl Sandberg called it a powerful message.

•It was the centrepiece of conversation at the UN women and P&G's International Gender Equality summit (#WeSeeEqual)

•Sons #ShareTheLoad achieved USD 1.8 million in free "earned media" coverage across TV, publications, consumer activations and outreach, with over 3 billion Impressions worldwide.

•The film itself garnered 64 million views. It has also increased engagement by 5X. (Source:Facebook Analytics).

•The value share of brand has also gone up by 11% in comparison to last year.

•The ‘Sons #ShareTheLoad’ movement has significantly helped offtake (sales) increase 125% on value, 138% on volume - vs Year Ago

But most importantly it helped spark lasting change in mindsets

•When #ShareTheLoad was launched in 2014, 79% of the men thought laundry was a women's job. Today that number has fallen to 52%.

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