FWD Takaful is launching a mental health awareness campaign in Malaysia, to challenge cultural taboos and normalise conversations around mental health.
The campaign, created by VMLY&R and Hogarth, is set to launch in January 2024 and addresses how mental illness, being Malaysia's second-largest health problem after heart disease, is often shrouded in social disapproval and stigma. People are fearful of admitting to having even mild mental health challenges, creating a barrier to them being able to access medical help.
According to FWD Group’s Mental Health Survey in 2022, 62% of Malaysians have experienced mental health challenges and severe social disapproval, or know someone who has.
What makes this win particularly pertinent: The pitch process for the campaign was a departure from the norm, designed to minimise stress and anxiety for the teams involved and positively impact their mental health too. Through offering a flexible timeline and an open creative brief, the experience was a stark contrast to the typically high-pressure environment of agency pitches.
“The brief was a wide open one with an interesting and meaningful problem to solve, so we enjoyed every minute of it," Raymond Chin, chief creative officer for Asia at VMLY&R, tells Campaign.
"Open briefs allow agencies to show the full breadth of their capabilities, and this gave us the opportunity to really analyse the problem from a societal perspective, as well as from the client's standpoint. Working with the client on a flexible timeline, also provided more room for creativity and space to be thoughtful about the platforms we would like to show up in while doing things that show the way forward with data, personalisation and AI-generated content."
The campaign, which will be revealed in January 2024, revolves around using art and music as therapeutic tools, leveraging generative AI to create safe spaces for discussions and access to help that resonate with individuals facing mental health challenges
“For this campaign, it was important to tap into Malaysian culture and social behaviours to ensure that what we put together would connect and resonate with the audience meaningfully," explains Chin.
"As each person's mental health challenges are unique, we found a fresh way to partner with music platforms and leverage AIGC, generating art, songs and playlists that can uplift a person's down moments in a way specific to the individual and their struggles."
The campaign will span various platforms: Film, video, digital, EDM, out-of-home (OOH), event/activation, and radio.