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TOI’s #NoConditionsApply campaign wins big at Cannes Lions 2018

#NoConditionsApply was the most trending campaign on social media when it was launched

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MUMBAI: Times of India recently won four honours at Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity for its campaign #NoConditionsApply that was launched in 2017 to shed light on the disparity with the female gender in modern society.

It focussed on Shindoor Khela, a 400 year old traditional followed in the Bengali culture where on the 10th day of Durga Pujo, married women would celebrate sisterhood by applying vermilion on each other. As a part of the campaign TOI joined hands with Tridhara Sammilani, one of the prestigious Durga Pujo organisers in Kolkata, to host an all-inclusive Shindoor Khela celebration. 

#NoConditionsApply was conceptualised by FCB Ulka India and created a wave across digital and social media transcending the boundaries of caste and culture becoming a national force which voiced the same message social inclusion for all women. The celebration was captured as a shot film by Bakery Film Productions and the communication amplification was managed by Moe’s Art.

The campaign that sparked a revolution has received the top honour at Cannes Lions 2018 by winning a gold Lion in Glass, The Lion for Change category that celebrates culture shifting creativity. It has also won a gold Lion in Direct Lions: Excellence in Single Country. The campaign also picked up two bronze Lions one in Direct Lions, excellence in Low budget/high impact campaign and marketing category another in brand experience and activation Lions.

TOI brand director Sanjeev Bhargava said, “When it comes to campaigns for social good, usually communication provokes action by a thoughtful spotlighting of the issue. The #NoConditionsApply Shindoor Khela campaign went a little further and there lies the power of the idea. This realisation and its amplification by simply inviting the marginalised sections of society to participate equally in the festival and investing a new symbol of womanhood with the two dots created an emotional significance in Bengali society that women are an absolute entity and not dependent on their male counterparts for either validation or special privileges.”

“While the initiative started off with one Puja Pandal in the city, the amplification of the initiative in various media has brought us a tremendous response and going forward, we intend to spread what is likely to snowball into a movement to multiple festivities all over the country and help establish a strong symbol of gender equality with our brand of newspaper reiterating its influence as a change maker in the country,” he added

FCB Ulka India national creative head Swati Bhattacharya said, “I’m absolutely overjoyed with the success of the campaign at Cannes, but more so, with the fact that there were so many women from the world over, who resonated with the campaign. In a world, which is full of rage and anger, this women’s movement is born out of love, joy, friendship and dancing. This initiative doesn’t turn to men either to make them change their mind or to recalibrate their views of women. This campaign was accepted as the movement owned and led by the women. This reaffirms our belief that we can improve things for ourselves if we come together as one – as sisters.”

#NoConditionsApply was the most trending campaign on social media and had a reach of over 20 million when it was launched.

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