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Advertising That Reaches Out To Abused Women

Manufacturers, marketing corporations, and media companies that support social responsibility initiatives, morally and financially, such as the protection of women against violence, are to be justifiably praised.

And Advertising Agencies and production companies, that provide worthy causes with their communication expertise and creative skills for no monetary profit, deserve resounding universal applause of public appreciation.

As can be expected, the featured commercial examples are not entertaining. They are purposely meant to be emotionally disturbing to view. The increasing prevalence of domestic violence is a serious societal issue that cannot be taken lightly.

1. Lacta, Don’t Ever Leave Me

Advertising Agency: Ogilvy, Athens, Greece

Superbly directed by filmmaker Argyris Papadimitropoulos, Greece’s leading chocolate products producer, Mondelez/Lacta’s ‘Don’t Ever Leave Me’ commercial, by Ogilvy Athens is soul-stirring.

On Likedin, Thomas Alexopoulos, Senior Brand Manager at Mondelēz International said that in view of the ‘International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women’, Lacta took a stand this year to depart from their usual love story scenarios, to show what love is not.

In a potentially award-winning response Ogilv Athens conceived, as he described it; “a gut-punch and eye-opening story with a bold and powerful social message that we owe to the Greek society, and to all the women out there, to drive social change for the better”.

2. Carling Black Label, Bride Armour

Advertising Agency: Ogilvy, Cape Town, South Africa

Anheuser-Busch InBev’s, Carling Black Label #NOEXCUSE for women abuse, teamed up with LifeLine, and award-winning fashion designer Suzaan Heyns who designed the ‘Bride Armour’ wedding gown.

Informed by real stories of tragic abuse, Suzaan’s spectacular creation serves as a powerful symbolic representation of the ‘armour’ a women should never have to don in order to protect herself from abuse when getting married.

Directed by filmmaker Zwelethu Radebe, Bride Armour’s compelling call for a new wedding vow for men to ‘Love, Protect, and Never Abuse’, motivated much needed public debate about the urgency of protecting women from being regarded as merely subjected male possessions of compliant servitude and abusive harassment.

3. IKEA, Ghost

Advertising Agency: Triad, Prague, Czech Republic

IKEA believes that every home should be a safe place. The reality however, is that for many women there is no comforting ‘home-sweet-home’ haven.

Directed by filmmaker Marek Partys, with foreboding intrigue and tension, IKEA’s ‘Ghost’ compellingly conveys the message that “domestic abuse is real, even if it’s not always visible”.

By avoiding any scenes of physical violence, the commercial effective highlights the never to be underestimated distress of psychological entrapment abused women have to endure.

4. White Ribbon, Day After Day

Advertising Agency: Bensimon Byrne, Toronto, Canada

Based in Toronto Canada, the White Ribbon Campaign (WRC), founded in 1991 and active in 60 countries, is the world’s largest advocacy network of ending violence against women.

Directed by renowned filmmaker Hubert Davis, the ‘Day After Day’ scenario centres on the domestic stresses caused by the Covid-19 lockdowns that have trapped many women at home with abusive partners, and has become what White Label described as a ‘pandemic within a pandemic’.

The film insightfully portrays each partner’s story. A husband trapped with his complicated emotions that he is unable to adequately control, and the resultant desperate feelings of his wife’s fear for her daughter, and fear of his incessant alienating behaviour.

Humberto Carolo, executive director, White Ribbon said It was critical that ‘Day After Day’ addressed all male perpetrators of domestic violence directly with their message that they are not alone.

White Ribbon can help them change their behaviour, which they must, and guide them towards a fulfilling life of self-control, respect for women, and rewarding male-role model relationships.

5. IKEA, Escape

Advertising Agency: Triad, Prague, Czech Republic

Directed by filmmaker Marek Partys, IKEAS’s commercial against domestic violence is call for people to stand together in compassionate support of women seeking to escape their abusers.

There are many obstacles when leaving an abusive relationship, let’s not be one of them”, their impactful commercial implores.

6. NZ Pet Refuge, Family Violence

Advertising Agency: DDB Aotearoa, Auckland, New Zealand

When Julie Chapman, founder of the ‘KidsCan’ charity for children in need, became aware of the heartbreaking research findings that more than 50 per cent of women in abusive relationships, delay escaping for fear of what will happen to their pets, she decided to launch New Zealand’s first shelter dedicated to housing pets affected by family violence.

As Julie, who has had her own experience with domestic violence, explained on ‘The Hits’ website portal;

“For many people, pets are family. For victims of domestic violence, they provide real solace. Leaving them behind with an abusive partner just isn’t an option”.

“We hope that if victims know their pets will be well looked after while they escape, it will remove a barrier to them leaving”.

The emotive scenario and stirring portrayal, directed by filmmaker Michelle Savill with insightful sensitivity, is accompanied by a soundtrack arranged by ‘Franklin Rd Music and Sound’ Auckland, with vocals by singer-songwriter New Zealander, Julia Deans.