Mars Wrigley UK has today announced an important new direction for Maltesers, which taps into the brand’s long-standing purpose of uniting people through the power of laughter.
The campaign comes as Maltesers extends its partnership with Comic Relief to a multi-year relationship. Over the next three years, money donated by Maltesers will help Comic Relief support the incredible work carried out by projects like The Happy Mums Foundation and Smile Group, both of which focus on supporting women with maternal mental health issues.
The two ads, which will be broadcast for the first time on Monday 8th March, International Women's Day, across TV and digital channels, were inspired by conversations with mums who shared their lived experiences of both the light and the dark side of new motherhood.
The message of the creative will also be mirrored online with the launch of a new social campaign exploring the ‘lighter’ and the ‘darker’ sides of motherhood. Through bespoke Giphy stickers, social posts and Instagram stories with powerful, and insightful messages, the campaign will aim to encourage mums to share their personal experiences and break down taboos surrounding important maternal mental health conversations.
While encouraging wider recognition of mums’ mental health, the creative celebrates the way so many women have this incredible superpower to share experiences and laugh together through the tough stuff life throws at them. With maternal mental health issues commonly undetected or misdiagnosed, the creative is a gentle reminder that when you see a beautiful new baby, you also see a new mum experiencing a spectrum of emotions too.
Created in conjunction with AMV BBDO, the new adverts are a continuation of Maltesers commitment to represent the diversity of its customers through its marketing. Following its award-winning entry for the Channel 4 Superhumans Wanted competition in 2016, Maltesers have been continually trying to push the industry forward with an honest representation of life.
Speaking about the launch, Leah Dyckes, Maltesers Brand Director said: “Maltesers has always been at the forefront of UK advertising’s drive to do a better job of representing society in everything we do – and this is no different. Be it our own experiences or the experiences of our friends, family or partners, we know that maternal mental health impacts so many women during and after pregnancy. However, it is rarely talked about and widely considered taboo.
“We’ve learnt to understand the power of representation over the years and are now bringing these learnings to a whole new issue in these ads, but this is only the start. Through our advertising, campaigns and partnerships, Maltesers aims to help women build resilience, by laughing together through the tough stuff. It’s what we’ve always done and what we will continue to do, now and for years to come.”
Polina Zabrodskaya, Creative Director, AMV BBDO, said: “Our culture conditions people to have strong opinions on what is acceptable and not acceptable for women to feel while being a mother. The more you are pressured to act blissfully happy, the harder it becomes to reach out for support. We hope this campaign helps to normalise the experiences so many women go through. We were lucky to have such a knowledgeable team of experts working with us closely and a female director pushing for what’s true and what’s real.”
Clare Kiely, Head of Funding and Approaches at Comic Relief said: "Maltesers have been raising money for Comic Relief for over ten years, and we're excited to be working with them again this year for Red Nose Day to support maternal mental health. We know that more work is needed to help mums overcome the shame and stigma that can be attached to maternal mental health issues and together, we want all mums to feel recognised, supported and able to ask for and receive help when they need it."
The stories shown in the adverts are based on conversations with a diverse range of mums who shared their real-life experiences about the light and dark side of motherhood – from the realities of breast feeding to navigating the pressures of motherhood. Maltesers worked with the Maternal Mental Health Alliance, an organisation Comic Relief helps to fund, to better understand this complex and sensitive topic.
Following the launch of the adverts on International Women’s Day (8th March), Maltesers is setting the groundwork for a wider and hugely important campaign, exploring the complexities and spectrum of emotions surrounding maternal mental health.