Wake The Town
Gear Seven/Arc Studios/Shift
Contemplative Reptile
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"Ngung Tao Nghiep (Don't Cause Karma)" - USAID, CITES Management Authority of Vietnam, Ministry of Agriculture & Rural Development & Tetra Tech - Le BrosEmbed With Credits



The purpose of this campaign was to discourage the personal use of elephant ivory and pangolin scales as displays of social status and wealth.

The target audience of this campaign is historically fixated on the belief that the use of these exotic products generates high social status – they do not feel guilt or remorse when these animals are killed. These adequately-educated people are not oblivious to the countless anti-usage campaigns, but they do not respond to the painful imagery of mistreated animals or the hard facts about the impact of poaching elephants and pangolins on the local ecosystem. Previous campaigns have fallen into this trap.

To channel this insight, our campaign drew on our target audience’s need to preserve their social image. It focused on their lingering fear of being judged negatively by their peers – the idea that, instead of gaining social status, their decision to use these products may lead to condemnation and shaming.

To bring this fear to life through traditional scare tactics, we created our own mascot,Mr Karma, as a manifestation of the threat of condemnation. Through the use of this persona, we depicted the user's guilt and fear literally following them, making a mark on their bodies as a stamp of shame for all their peers to see.

Target audience

​The campaign was mostly targeted at men between the ages of 30-55, who are statistically the primary users of products made from elephant ivories and pangolins in Vietnam. These people believe social wealth and good fortune stem from the possession of products made from elephant ivories and pangolin.

Where it ran

The campaign kicked off with two situational films featuring Mr. Karma haunting a woman who bought an ivory bracelet, and a man who ate pangolin soup. The video was then adapted into different versions to run on social media sites (Facebook, YouTube) and LCD monitors in office buildings.

 We used the campaign creative to lead our viewers to a microsite, where they could create and share their own personalised photos, which includes anti-usage messages. We approached many corporations, journalists, and celebrities in Vietnam to sign a pact against the usage of pangolin and elephant products to generate a wider sense of social shame.


The two videos amassed 1.7 million views in 1 month, reached 364,000 users and engaged 74,000 people throughout the campaign. There were 120,000 views of campaign PR articles and 15 million people were reached across our OOH channels.

 The campaign was among the most engaged social campaigns between the end of 2020 and beginning of 2021.


Agency / Creative

Categories: Awareness, Corporate, Social and PSAs

Worldwide Partners, 1 year ago