Freedom from social taboos. #ShareTheLoad

Nobody cooks for her. Nobody cleans for her. Nobody makes her meals. Nobody makes sure she's okay. Nobody caters to her period. A woman is always instantly looked at as someone who needs to take care of everyone.

Hey, you all grown-up girls with high fashion sense, a good degree and scope oriented job are you ready to cook once you are back home from a really tiring day at work? Open to do laundry when you really had a bad day? Will you do the dishes, when your legs are shivering and you are in your periods?


I haven't heard it loud and clear as yet!

No, no, I am not talking trash here, this is what our Indian society has taught us. To cater to all the household work hardly matters what you are going through?

Ladki kon hai? Tum ho

Ghar ke kam kaun karega? Tum karogi?

Usne ulta bola to kya? Tum chup rahogi....

Anything else? Or do you have the sequence of questions and lessons already aligned as I have?

So let me map now about what I am talking about here. I am talking about #ShareTheLoad campaign that Ariel has launched and established a hard fact that household chores are not only a female's job.

I am really happy to see that some gentlemen are setting a really good example to society. But we need to speak up and make things right, reset the correct rules, and make this society a happy and healthy place.

Let's start from 2015, when Ariel, one of the P&G babies brought the issue of gender inequality in front of the public eyes and consciousness with an offensive question “Is laundry only a woman’s job?”

I will walk you through the campaign. This is an open balcony set-up in a home and two old ladies are having conversations with each other along with some tea and cookies. The daughter-in-law is catering to them and doing multitask, her laptop is on the table and she is working along with some usual home stuff. While the two oldies are talking the mother-in-law says proudly that my daughter-in-law earns more than my son. Her friend then says, we haven't imagined that these girls will achieve so much and life will be so changed.

Now happens the main unusual stuff, the son comes down to the living room and asked his wife

"Priya, why haven't you washed my Green shirt yet?"

All the three women now turn towards him and just stare!

The ad ends up with a washing machine, a green shirt and of course Ariel with a question “Is laundry only a woman’s job?”

If you haven't seen this, see this now:

India has always been a strong patriarchal society, and brands have typically reinforced gender stereotypes down the years. As Indian society has opened up in recent years, many brands (e.g.: Nike, Whisper, Skoda, Loreal, Horlicks, and many more) have started to sketch the reflection of the “new” urban Indian woman; a more confident, accomplished woman boldly achieving her dreams in a male-dominated society.

The #ShareTheLoad campaign generated immense positive attention for the brand, growing Ariel Matic’s sales by 106%.

Let's now move to the 2016 sequel (the focus of this case). This campaign will remain my favorite because I can relate to every bit of it. No additional baseless words, no additional made-ups, this is a typical middle-class Indian family where the father has raised a wonderful responsible, hardworking woman but unknowingly skipped the most important part. Like our dad, he has also taught her the algebra lessons, helped her with the stream she wanted to pursue after her secondary school, suggested to us how to grow well in our professional career but forgets to teach us that it is not only a female’s job to do the household stuff. ‘Dad's #ShareTheLoad showcases the lore of household burden that we pass down to generations. This ad is all about a thought that every other educated father will have after watching her daughter full of personal and professional loads. It takes the audience's heart to a stage where the audience must think about why they haven't taught their son to contribute towards the household chores and taught their girls that household is not exactly their job. This ad is full of emotion, inspiration, corrective measures, and a positive note to society.

Check this campaign here:

Impact: This ad not only inspired over 2.3 million men to share the load of laundry but also have increased 111% sales of Ariel Matic when compared to 2015’s #ShareTheLoad campaign.

In 2016, ‘Dad's #ShareTheLoad’ achieved USD12.3 million in free “earned media” coverage across leading local and international news-channels, radio stations, and publications with over 2.6 billion earned media impressions. Over 2776 commentators and influencers like Irfan Khan, Lara Dutta, Gul Panag, and gender equality advocates like Sheryl Sandberg and Melinda Gates helped spread the message. (Source: Earned Media Tracking, Devries)

As a result, with the same budget as 2015, ‘Dad's #ShareTheLoad’ achieved a 42% increase in unaided brand awareness in 2016, beating the 34% increase benchmark from 2015.

Now adding one marketing punch below!

The campaign perfectly fills in the CBBE(Customer-Based Brand Equity) Model.

This pyramid model shows how a brand’s success can be directly attributed to customers’ attitudes towards that brand. Let’s understand how Arial cracked it.

Level 1: Brand Identity (who are you?)

The brand name, it's distinct white and green colour packet give it a strong identity. Being a customer, when I hear Ariel, I get a feeling of a caring mind that has been developing the staples of the laundry room throughout the ages. Evolving to its fullest, working towards making the lives easier for these lovely women out there. It focuses on making the laundry process easier and smoother, delivering the best clean and better stain removal at the same time. Ariel wanted to free women from those traditional domestic roles Imagination, determination, and technological empowerment are central to Ariel’s vision, and all these pushes it to its next level - The Brand meaning.

Level 2: Brand Meaning (what are you?)

Ariel has advanced detergent formulas that deliver great cleaning performance in both quick and cold wash conditions, which helps both you and the environment.

Level 2 is split into two categories:

  • Brand performance: The above stats must have clarified that customers love Ariel not just because it has used fantastic ideas for the campaigns but also for a reason that it is reliable, effective, and easy on the pockets.

  • Brand imagery: The brand has been successful in pushing (making consumer IMAGINE) the idea, household cleaning is about both sexes, not just one. In addition, Ariel without a doubt is blessed with TOMA (Top of mind awareness). It is undoubtedly ruling the laundry detergent market. High Engagement of the company through customer’s first moment of truth and second moment of truth is helping the company in creating high visibility in the market

Level 3: Brand Response (What are the feelings for the brand?)

Ariel understands my world – the world of women, mothers, workers. Ariel has just joined my circle of trusted advisers. If a brand gains a sense of Trust, the competitors will find the game tough to crack.

Level 4: Brand Resonance (a strong relationship)

Acquiring new customers is difficult but retaining the existing ones is a full-time dedicated job. Ariel has played well and will continue doing well. Why am I adoring this champion, this is because Ariel has smartly managed to capture the entire market. If a brand gets the real influencer, i.e. women; you’ll grow the audience. But if you get the men thinking and then you are doing a fantastic job and you will continue growing the audience; finding new markets and engendering new thinking. Job well done!


India is shaping up to a new urban India with lots of modifications in the typical Indian mentality. Thanks to the amazing dad, who noticed, where he went wrong and apologized to all the dad out there, who thinks that it's the lady, who has to manage the household chores. The Ariel dad promises to contribute to the basic yet important task, he says, if he can’t ace the cooking game, at least he can do his laundry.

Can I urge all Indian men reading my article to take baby steps towards the household chores and contribute little on a day to day basis for making their home a happy place for their wife, daughter, sister, and mom?

Please share the load!

Author: Rashmi Mishra.