Need to Know
28 : 06 : 19

An interactive installation digitises our internal health, One Mindful Mind addresses India’s mental health crisis and why Generation Z are turning away from ‘brand of me’.

Cannes Lions 2019: Cannes U Not? pokes fun at ridiculous brand activism

Cannes U Not? by M/H VCCP

Cannes – The card game uses humour to highlight how we’ve reached peak brand activism.

Launched by agency M/H VCCP at the annual festival of creativity, Cannes U Not? asks players to solve social issues with ludicrous pitches. Players draw a card from a deck of brands – such as Axe Body Spray, Tinder and ‘a bougie athleisure brand’ – and pair it with a social issue card – including bee extinction, adult acne and the gender pay gap.

Players must then come up with a pitch on the spot to either solve, promote or raise awareness of the social issue. ‘Have you ever seen a brand get involved with a cause it has absolutely nothing to do with? Fast food chains, luxury cars, even toilet paper? It feels like we’ve reached peak-brand activism – and not in a good way,’ reads a press release by M/H VCCP.

Brand activism campaigns are becoming increasingly questionable, leaving consumers distrustful. Read our Opinion piece to see why it’s time for brands to relinquish ‘woke-washing’ and instead convert their words into real action.

This health installation uses biodata to take an internal selfie

The Frontier Within by Droga5 and Marshmallow Laser Feast for Thorne, New York The Frontier Within by Droga5 and Marshmallow Laser Feast for Thorne, New York
The Frontier Within by Droga5 and Marshmallow Laser Feast for Thorne, New York The Frontier Within by Droga5 and Marshmallow Laser Feast for Thorne, New York

New York – The interactive installation is the first brand campaign by health supplements company Thorne.

The Frontier Within takes consumers on a journey to discover their biological inner self. On National Selfie Day (21 June), Thorne launched an activation in which visitors could create inner selfies. To do this, they were connected to biometric sensors that captured their respiratory, circulatory and neurological biodata, which was digitally mapped across their body and visualised on a screen.

Created in collaboration with Droga5 and digital arts group Marshmallow Laser Feast, the experience aims to show the complexity of our vital inner systems. According to Justin Durazzo, co-director at Droga5, ‘we basically wanted to create a new visual system for people to think and change their perception to how they think about their body’.

As the pursuit of The Optimised Self continues, health and wellness brands are highlighting the importance of decelerating and prioritising our internal needs rather than buying into our pervasive performance culture.

YouTube launches AR for trying on make-up

Global – Viewers can now try on cosmetics virtually while following along with YouTube beauty vloggers.

The launch of AR Beauty Try-On aims to better connect creators and audiences, allowing viewers to apply make-up virtually as they watch tutorials by beauty influencers. The tool is only available through Famebit, YouTube’s branded content platform, and allows partner brands such as MAC Cosmetics to collaborate with influencers and measure results in real time.

During a trial of the experience, YouTube found that 30% of viewers activated the AR experience in the app, trying on virtual lipstick for an average time of 80 seconds. This new functionality is likely to change how consumers interact with beauty vloggers – in 2018, beauty-related content generated more than 169bn views on YouTube (source: Statista/Pixability).

As the beauty and technology sectors merge, YouTube is demonstrating how AR can enhance how we try out and buy cosmetics. For more, read our macrotrend Algorithmic Beauty.

AR Beauty Try-On, YouTube

Cannes Lions 2019: One Mindful Mind turns parents into counsellors

One Mindful Mind (OMM) by NeuroGen Brain & Spine Institute and TBWA\India
One Mindful Mind (OMM) by NeuroGen Brain & Spine Institute and TBWA\India
One Mindful Mind (OMM) by NeuroGen Brain & Spine Institute and TBWA\India

Mumbai – The print toolkit addresses the surge in mental health disorders among Indian children and teenagers.

Created by NeuroGen Brain & Spine Institute in association with TBWA\India, One Mindful Mind helps to turn parents into counsellors for their children, developing a preventative approach in positive child psychology. The physical toolkit comprises five resources, giving children the freedom to choose.

The tools include a set of illustrated flashcards that list everyday feelings and a set of coping mechanisms; a mood journal to promote emotional fluency; and thought cards, a game to improve focus and concentration. With a lack of mandatory mental health education in schools – and one in four Indian children aged between 13 and 15 suffering from mental health disorders (source: World Health Organization) – the country is in need of practical solutions like One Mindful Mind.

As we explored in our macrotrend Anxiety Rebellion, mental health support should be endorsed from a young age. This is especially vital in India, a country in which access to therapy is still lacking.

Stat: Generation Z no longer care about their brand

The next generation are creating a name for themselves as super-creatives, according to a new report, Into Z Future, by JWT and Snapchat. The study, which explored the attitudes of US and UK consumers aged between 13 and 22, found that this generation may be monetising their creativity, but they are moving away from the concept of the personal brand.

While 56% of respondents use social apps to express themselves creatively, only one-fifth say they use social media to develop or create their brand. Furthermore, nearly half (46%) are doing it because it’s a passion, and most don’t consider themselves to be a brand.

As this study shows, Generation Z are stepping away from a curated identity and Instagram feed, using their social channels as platforms for micro-businesses.

Thought-starter: Is it time for chocolate-makers to innovate?

Despite climate change threatening supply chains, the chocolate sector is thriving, with product innovation fuelling regional flavours and free-from treats.

According to Phil Landers, founder of award-winning brand Land Chocolate: ‘Chocolate has been over-commoditised, and brands must take the necessary steps or the industry will suffer severe consequences.’ Now, the sector is toeing a careful line between the need for products that celebrate regional tastes and excite consumers, and the necessity to innovate in order to future-proof the sector, its practices and the beans on which it relies.

With consumers increasingly conscious of their health and – with this – their sugar intake, chocolate-makers are being forced to innovate. Earlier this year, Mondelez-owned Cadbury Dairy Milk announced the launch of a new variant containing 30% less sugar. In 2018, Mars announced a new range of its famous Mars and Snickers bars made with 40% and 30% less sugar, respectively.

Beyond plant-based innovations in chocolate, brands are taking inspiration from regional market nuances to introduce new flavour profiles. In the Philippines, for example, chocolate-makers like Theo & Philo are adding soy sauce toffee and black pepper to products in a re-imagination of the region’s recognisable savoury aromas.

Read more about the Chocolate Market here.

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