Creative in association withGear Seven

Dairy Brand Dutch Mill Documents the Struggles of a Lockdown Product Launch with Only Five Crew

Advertising Agency
Bangkok, Thailand
Wunderman Thompson Thailand campaign captures Dutch Mills struggles to launch its new product in lockdown and the tricky task of building a chain reaction machine

While the Covid-19 situation is improving in many countries where people can now take off their masks, go to a concert or watch football in a stadium, Thailand remains in heavy lockdown.

Under the governmental policy, commercial shoots are restricted to no more than five people on set, which poses a huge challenge to all production crews. Since most of the industry work on a freelance basis, many have been unemployed for up to three months.

Dutch Mill, a leading Thai dairy brand, had to film a commercial for a new product, Dutch Mill Selected Rich Espresso coffee-flavoured milk. A product with a strong coffee flavour to help you feel ‘strong’ in any situation.

The commercial planned to use a Rube Goldberg (chain reaction) machine to demonstrate the journey of fresh milk and rich espresso coffee, but due to lockdown, this complex shoot could only be achieved with five people behind the camera.

The production crew documented the Herculean task of engineering and filming this complex machinery with a five-member crew over three gruelling months in a behind-the-scenes video titled 'The Lockdown Rube Goldberg'. In the documentary, the perseverance of the director and his art director sends a hopeful message to all to stay strong through their own adversity. 

Within three days, the video received over 4.4K shares, 4M organic views, and 1K comments of encouragement for the crew.  

Raviwan Mahakachaporn, marketing director of Dutch Mill, said the brand wanted to show support for the industry in these tough times: “In this lockdown situation, it is tough for all of us but especially for freelance workers who are not on a payroll. They need all the support they can get, and we are happy to be their working partner. We hope this video will cheer you up and fuel your strength to fight another day.”

Thasorn Boonyanate, executive creative director of Wunderman Thompson Thailand, added: “We’re trying to prove that it’s possible for brands to launch communication under this five-person production limit. Not only did we commission the crew to make this documentary to promote themselves, but we also diverted a portion of our agency fee to hire 70 production staff who are currently out of work. The truth is we all need each other to get through Covid-19 together.”

The campaign follows Dutch Mill’s support of more than 200 Mum-and-Pop shops in Thailand during the pandemic by diverting advertising spend for user-generated geo-targeted ads for the local stores. 

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