According to studies from the United Nations, one in three women worldwide say they have been a victim of gender violence. Movistar, one of the largest telephone companies in Latin America, launched a campaign to create awareness and provide access to a national emergency call center.
Objective and Context:
The objective of the campaign was to encourage women to use a website tool and government assistance phone line to report gender violence, receive information, or simply ask for help.
The campaign's target audience was men and women between the ages of 16 and 55 who live in Argentina. The goal was to encourage all Argentinian citizens to take an active role in preventing gender violence, create social awareness, and empower female victims to speak up.
Because people in Argentina tend to communicate with voice messages rather than texts or phone calls, the campaign leveraged mobile messaging platform WhatsApp and its ability to send such messages. Movistar created a website where visitors could receive a message or record their own. The website also provided access to the government's direct line of assistance.
The campaign launched in tandem with International Women's Week and while the Argentina Parliament was debating the legality of abortion. Both events had ignited the country's feminist movement, which led to an increase in media coverage, political and social relevance, and the motto "ni una menos," which translates as "not even one less." The movement highlighted the real-life stories of women such as Maria, who had endured a violent situation but was unable to tell her story. By amplifying these voices, the campaign sought to offer support to the 42,000 victims who suffer from gender violence every year.
Overall Campaign Execution:
When the WhatsApp message was played out loud on speaker phone, it sounded positive and upbeat. But upon placing a mobile device next to one's ear, the message changed. Phrases were omitted, and as a result the meaning of the message changed. It was at this point that the only thing the listener heard was a call for help. This highlighted the idea that when we listen closely to someone, we hear the truth, and listeners could begin to understand the self-imposed censorship of gender violence victims.
The voice message was released in Argentina and shared by influencers and foundations that support women rights. Thousands listened to the message and shared their own, and national media helped the campaign gain international coverage.
By delivering "Maria's Message" via the popular mobile platform WhatsApp, Movistar offered an example of how to use technology responsibly.