How a Malaysian condom ad made its way to Cannes

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(Marketingmagazine.com.my) – By: Malati Siniah 

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We might not have brought home any metal at this year’s Cannes Lions but Malaysia did beat out other global ads to make it the shortlist for several categories this year.

Once such campaign on the shortlist was Y&R’s work for local condom manufacturer, Care Latex. The ‘Invisible Wall’ campaign was shortlisted for three categories; Print & Poster Craft: Art Direction, Illustration and Standard Outdoor under the Lions Health & Wellness awards.

We caught up with Y&R’s Chief Creative Officer, Gigi Lee during the awards to share her thoughts on the campaign and the local creative industry.

– Could you share a little bit more on the Invisible Wall campaign
Our client, Care Latex, a local condom manufacturer was suffering from lack of awareness among the millennials. We needed to make this brand relevant again with our target audience, in a way that would get them to take notice.

Once we launched the campaign, the response was mostly positive, becoming a talking point among those exposed to it. We also saw increased awareness and queries for the brand.

– Did you face any challenges when launching this campaign in Malaysia
Due to legal regulations, we couldn’t launch this campaign in a traditional sense, with print or magazine advertisements. So we had to be more focused in targeting our audience.

We had to find a way to reach these millennials in context that would make sense to them. That’s why we decided to have our posters displayed in nightclubs.

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– Why Cannes and why do you think the judges picked Invisible Wall for the shortlist
We felt Cannes would be the best platform to pit our campaign against the rest of the world, to see where we stand among the best. As for our shortlist, we can only assume that the judges saw the relevance and humour that we all felt from the campaign.

– Could you share some of your thoughts on the creative Industry in Malaysia, any advice you have for future creatives getting into the industry.
We’ve always have had a strong sense of design as our foundation, and thanks to legends like the late Yasmin Ahmad we’ve been building the courage to tell stories that are deeply rooted in local culture, be it through TVCs, to online content to social media campaigns.

We’ve also proven ourselves capable of building on those foundations with strong direct and activation ideas.

But now we’re at a crossroads. The world has been experimenting with newer platforms and media, and many may think that we’re falling behind. But it’s not too late to catch up and even take the lead. We have strong design and storytelling roots; we have great young talent with the technical knowledge (whom we’d have to compete with the burgeoning start-up scene to woo); even the Malaysian consumers have become increasingly savvy.

The next few years will be an amazing opportunity for us to start telling more brilliant, beautiful stories on these newer platforms, and we’re hoping to see Malaysia shine in categories like Cyber and even Innovation over the next few years.

As for future creatives, our advice would be to build your foundation in not just craft, but also your knowledge in these new platforms. Learn coding with the free resources online. Experiment with making your own online content. It’ll be a lot of hard work, but your generation can and will play an important role in taking our industry to the next level.


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