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Like father, like son - How Ariel is encouraging Gen Next to #ShareTheLoad

Ariel has been unearthing the reality of inequality within households since 2015 with their award-winning movement – #ShareTheLoad. The movement was started in India to address this equality, aspiring for happier households where men and women share the load equally. Towards this, Ariel has continued to raise pertinent questions that make the audience think, introspect and act. 

In 2015, Ariel raised a very relevant question – ‘Is laundry only a woman’s job?’ to draw attention to the uneven distribution of domestic chores. With the 2016 ‘Dads Share The Load’ movement, the conversation was aimed at unearthing the reason for the disparity, which is the cycle of prejudice passed down from one generation to the next. 

In the newly-released edition of #ShareTheLoad, Ariel raises yet another relevant question – Are we teaching our sons what we are teaching our daughters? Urging mothers to be the changemakers of the society and hence relook at the way they raise their sons.  

Through this new film conceptualised by BBDO, Ariel wants to go deeper into the reasons for this disparity and talk about the upbringing of children. Even within the same progressive households, there is often a difference in the way our sons and daughters are being raised. Of late, daughters are being raised to be strong, independent and confident to excel in all fields. But, they continue to be the primary caretakers of households once they get married. This places unbalanced expectations and burdens on them, which can get in the way of their professional growth. While the society is changing, there is not always enough attention given to raising sons differently. For example, teaching them some new life skills like laundry or cooking, to help better manage their future and make them advocates of household equality. If not taught to #ShareTheLoad, the sons of today become the husbands of tomorrow, who may not be prepared enough to be equal partners. With the belief that mothers have a strong empathetic point of view, Ariel urges this generation of mothers to raise their children as a generation of equals. 

Over the years, this movement has had a significant impact. More men today are sharing the load than ever before. In 2015, 79 per cent men thought household chores are a women’s job. In 2016, 63 per cent men thought household chores are a woman’s/ daughter’s job and ‘outside’ work is man’s/ son’s job. In 2018, this number has reduced to 52 per cent. Despite progress, more work is still to be done. Ariel continues to address the issue of Gender Inequality within households and has thus launched their third season of #ShareTheLoad because, with Ariel, anyone can get impeccable cleaning, no matter who does the laundry. 

Commenting on the movement, Sonali Dhawan, Marketing Director, P&G India, and Fabric Care, said, “This year, we reignite conversations to go deeper into the cause of this disparity. In the context of right upbringing, we urge this generation of mothers to be the changemakers for the future, and raise yet another pertinent question – Are we teaching our sons what we have been teaching our daughters? If sharing the load is taught at an impressionable age, it becomes a part of their value system. As a mother of a boy and a girl, I truly believe this is possible. I also believe that with Ariel it is possible to simplify the lives of consumers and a happier household is one where both men and women share the load. Ariel encourages men to do their bit and take up tasks like laundry because anyone can get impeccable cleaning with Ariel, no matter who does the laundry.” 

Elaborating on the campaign, Josy Paul, Creative Director, BBDO, said, “Ariel’s #ShareTheLoad has grown into an active movement for gender equality at home. It has generated greater emotional equity for the brand and has triggered a positive change in society. It is one of India’s most recognised and awarded advertising ideas. WARC ranked it the world’s most effective campaign for 2017 and 2018. We are excited to launch the next phase of the movement. The new campaign is based on an uncomfortable truth that’s so true for today. In the film, the mother’s realisation of an unspoken social conditioning and her determined resolution is thoughtful, sensitive and a big leap for society. Her simple action gives men one more reason to share the load at home.” 

A survey by an independent third party in 2018 also reveals some differences in the male and female approaches. 72 per cent of women believe that weekends are for grocery shopping, laundry and getting homework done, while 68 per cent of Indian men believe that weekends are for relaxation. Coming to daily household tasks like laundry, many women continue to single-handedly take responsibility of all the chores. 68 per cent of women come back from work and do laundry regularly, while for men, this number is only 35 per cent. In fact, 40 per cent of Indian men don’t know how to operate a washing machine. Further, more than half of the men agreed that they don’t do laundry as they never saw their fathers do it. 

With laundry at its center, Ariel’s new communication shows a mother teaching her son to do laundry. By making laundry the face of the movement against this inequality that exists in Indian households, Ariel India with its latest campaign wants mothers to raise a whole new generation of sons who know how to #ShareTheLoad. Because when the sons of today become husbands of tomorrow, they should be equipped to share the load. 

Campaign Credits: 

Agency: BBDO India

Chairman & Chief Creative Officer: Josy Paul

Chief Creative Director: Hemant Shringy

Executive Vice President: Atin Wahal

Sr. Creative Director Copy: Aarti Srinivasan

Sr. Creative Director Art: Balakrishna Gajelli

Copy Supervisor: Karan Nair

Art Supervisor: Vijay Kumar Vasala

Account Management: Mitul Shah, Kayur Desai

Agency Producer: KV Krishnam Raju

Production house: Offroad Films

Executive Producer: Khalil Bachooali

Director: Gauri Shinde

Producer: Anirudh Sharma 

About the Survey:

  • For 2018 - Survey conducted by Nielsen with a total of 897 respondents with Males and Females, Married, Between 25-48 years in Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore Chennai in June 2018
  • For 2016: All claims were generated from men, women, and children (ages 10 to 14) who were in agreement with the above statements as per a 4-city (542 people) survey conducted by an independent third party in Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore and Hyderabad in January 2016
  • For 2015: Claims generated from men and women who were in agreement with the above statements as per a 5-city (1000 person) survey conducted by AC Nielsen in Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Hyderabad & Bangalore, in November 2014.
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