Staff Reporters
Apr 4, 2024

Tasty Treat finds missing birthdays for Bangladeshis

The campaign, conceptualised by Grey Bangladesh, uses AI and historical clues to estimate birth dates for customers among the 20 million people in the country unaware of which day they were born.

For decades, many home births throughout Bangladesh were undocumented until the 1990s when mandatory birth certificates came into effect. As a result, it is estimated that some 20 million elder Bangladeshis today live with a default date of January 1st on their ID cards but do not know the actual day of their births.

To help more people celebrate their lives each year, the country's largest bakery chain teamed up with Grey Bangladesh to devise an AI-driven engine that uses cultural, religious or weather-related historical event dates along with childhood memories and family clues from the past to estimate a person's actual date of birth. 

The ensuing brand film is based on one such true story of a birthday-less father, Alimuddin Mia, and his daughter, Salma, who sees the tool on Facebook and works tirelessly to gather clues from her father's village before bringing them to Tasty Treat and being given a new birthday for him to celebrate.  

The module, called 'Best Birthday Gift', was created by Bangladeshi software company Softwind Tech, and naturally comes with the following disclaimer around its accuracy:

This is a marketing promotion from Tasty Treat, and the date of birth estimated by AI in this promotion should not be used instead of government-issued IDs, nor does it claim to be a substitute for the date of birth in Government records. As in all AI-powered results, the module's estimation could have a margin of error.

Campaign's take: It's difficult to know the accuracy level of the tool in predicting the exact date of birth. It's also likely that with the clues and research done, families might be able to estimate the rough date just as well on their own. 

But that's somewhat secondary to the intention of the campaign which is very well aligned with the brand. This is a 350-store bakery chain looking to provide reasons for customers to be able to enjoy baked goods together. Whether their technology helps or not, the campaign sparks more conversations about birthday celebrations for those without one. By giving new opportunities to celebrate, they combine a purpose-led initiative to do something special for their customers that includes their tasty treats.

Source:
Campaign Asia

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