What’s On

The emotional push for Unilever’s Comfort

Taking a cause or a human relationship that connects has been big with Unilever brands. The idea can be seen once again in a new short film, launched by Comfort, one of Unilever’s fabric conditioner brands. In the film, two mothers anxiously prepare to visit their sons whom they have not seen for a long time — one son is a prisoner, and the other, an astronaut.

Commissioned by Unilever, the documentary by Ogilvy & Mather Singapore, sets out to relieve some of the pressure and tensions that face modern mums today, and to let them know that Comfort believes there are no good or bad mothers, as long as there is love.

“The pressure on mothers today is intense. Everywhere you turn there is an opinion, a celebrity or a style of motherhood that is deemed ‘right’. And it changes constantly. Most communications perpetuate this notion that everything and everyone should always be picture perfect,” explained Yves Geisenberger, Global Brand VP for Fabric Conditioners, Unilever, and added, “What we set out to do with this film is to take a moment to remind all mums, and society as a whole really, that, in the end, it’s the little everyday things that mothers do to express their love that matter more than trying to reach perfection. Instead of adding to the pressure, we want to help restore confidence.”

As the story in the film unfolds, we see the mother of the prisoner and the mother of the astronaut talking about how much they miss their sons and worry about them, how they tried to raise them right and, like every good mother, what they wish they’d done differently. We also meet the two sons who reflect on their childhoods and how much their mothers did for them, and how they always made sure they felt loved. What we don’t see is which man is the son of which mother.

Recognising that taking the additional step of using a fabric conditioner like Comfort is one of those extra little things that mothers do out of love, Ogilvy & Mather London worked alongside Unilever’s global Comfort marketing team to decipher the brand’s place in modern day culture where mothers face immense pressures. What became clear is that the brand should help in alleviating some of this pressure.

O&M Singapore was recruited to bring this brand idea to life.

Eugene Cheong, Chief Creative Officer, Ogilvy & Mather Asia Pacific, said, “We chose a prisoner and an astronaut to illustrate the dramatic contrast between two sons whose paths in life have taken them to very different places. What unites them is the time they must spend away from their families. Despite their sons’ disparate circumstances, both mothers share the same doubts and believe they could have done things better. Importantly, the film features real people and real families, not actors. It is impossible to tell whose son is whose, reinforcing the message that what matters in the end is the love mums give.”

“We hope mothers and people around the world will find the film thought provoking and join us in our efforts to appreciate and recognize mums for all the big and little things they do every day to express their love,” said Andre (Dede) Laurentino, Global ECD for Unilever at Ogilvy & Mather London.

Noor Fathima Warsia

A veteran journalist in the Indian marketing, media and advertising fraternity, Noor Fathima Warsia took on the role of Group Editor -– APAC for Digital Market Asia in May 2013. Noor has focussed on tracking trends and developments in the Indian media industry.