Aussie laundry detergent brand OMO is back with its Dirt is Good mission, igniting the “real play” social debate via The Real Play Experiment; an online video created by J. Walter Thompson which highlights the benefits of letting kids play freely and experience life to better prepare them for the future.
The online marketing campaign, spearheaded by a four-minute YouTube video, is supported by partnerships with women’s lifestyle website Mamamia, and Dr Suzy Green from the Positivity Institute plus an extensive PR campaign. Further elements of the nationwide campaign will be launched throughout the year.
Simon Langley, ECD J. Walter Thompson Sydney said, “For too long we have been wrapping our kids in cotton wool. We felt it was time to ignite the conversation and get people talking about the benefits of letting kids play freely. Social media is the natural forum to do this.”
The Real Play Experiment is a social experiment which explores what happens when kids aren’t given the freedom to play freely. Parents watching their kids at a weekend football match are filmed getting increasingly frustrated as referees constantly penalise their kids for getting dirty, making a tackle or heading a ball.
Eventually the children are actively encouraged to get down and get dirty and the result is a vibrant, fun filled (and dirty) football match. Real play!
“The Real Play Experiment is already achieving exactly what we set out to do; provoke a conversation,” said Langley.
“By stimulating feelings of frustration and guilt the parents eventually acknowledge how much happier the kids are when they are allowed to play freely and get dirty. We’re really pleased with the outcome.”
Paul Connell, marketing director Unilever Laundry & Homecare said, “With research showing that real play activities are in decline, it’s a natural fit for Omo to champion the cause and spread the ‘dirt is good’ message.
“Through launch of The Real Play Experiment, we will bring the real play debate to the table and ignite a conversation about its importance for children’s learning and development. We believe all parents want the best for their children and are open to making positive changes that contribute to their development.
“However, what gets in the way of embracing real play activities more frequently are societal pressures and restrictions around what being a ‘perfect parent’ looks like. In a world where time is poor, there is a need for more help to make it easier and simpler to embrace Real Play every day,” Connell concluded.
The six-month Mamamia partnership includes a range of native content and social posts all supported by Mamamia editors including Jo Abi.
The Real Play Experiment (attended by Abi) appears as a YouTube Masthead as well as across Mamamia, and will be seeded out via Facebook and Unruly. Banner assets will also appear on Mamamia and Kidspot.