AME Effective Perspective Winners Viewpoint – Seung Eun Jang & Yumi Sul, Overman South Korea
Seung Eun Jang, Founder/CEO/Creative Director and Yumi Sul, Senior Account Executive of Overman South Korea spent some time with AME’s Effective Perspective, together they discuss the powerful inspiration for the AME Platinum winning entry “100 Words Pain_ting” for Save the Children. Keep reading to find out more about this compelling project including insights, strategies, creative/logistical challenges, and what results make them proud.
The Overman South Korea team earned the number one spot on the AME Agency Report for their Regional Platinum Award-winning “100 Words Pain_ting” for the NGO Save the Children. The campaign fought verbal abuse and increased Save the Children’s presence as a children's rights NGO. Overman selected 297 children, from ages 3 to 16, and asked them to choose the most painful to them and express this emotion through painting. The experiential campaign featured paintings created by children that illustrated hurtful words in an online exhibition and offline exhibitions in 17 cities. The agency also earned 4 AME Gold and 5 Silver Medallions.
Powerful Results: 5 million earned media impressions,1.55 million exhibition audience, a 5933% surge in site traffic
Overman used the 100-year anniversary campaign of Save the Children to attract public attention for verbal abuse and gain sympathy. "100 Words Paint-ing" achieved 45 million earned media impressions and 1.55 million exhibition audience (the most viewed painting exhibition in South Korea followed by Van Gogh), and a 5933% surge in site traffic showing the brand top of mind jump from 4th to 2nd raising the brand more than 200%. Other potent results include Massive media coverage - major newspapers, news magazines, and television stations reported the campaign, a flood of requests for offline exhibitions across the country and 51 exhibitions were held in 2019, and a number of government offices, city offices of education and children's hospitals voluntarily transmitted the campaign video on their own media channels.
Impressed the 2020 AME Grand Jury
"Earned media, exhibition success and the booklet shared with every elementary school child put this campaign above and beyond anything else in PR." Jamie Scott, Managing Director, Showpony Australia
“Strong insight and use of children to send the message to their parents. Great engagement for an activation to be able to reach so many people in different ways. A challenge for an NGO with little money” Heather Segal, Group Strategy Director, Zulu Alpha Kilo Canada
"Powerful case because of the change of perspective. The case also uncovered great insights by involving a children's therapist and brought it to life in a very emotional and relevant way." Alessandro Panella, Managing Director, Serviceplan Consulting Group Germany
AME Awards: What was the inspiration for “100 Words Pain_ting” and what did you ultimately hope to accomplish?
Seung Eun Jang: I have seen pictures drawn by grandmothers who were forced to be Japanese military sexual slaves in World War II. I didn't feel the pain vividly because it was something our generation didn't experience, but when I saw the girls in the picture they drew, I could feel the pain. It became a huge inspiration for this project. Children have bruises on their hearts due to the words that parents casually said in the name of discipline, but they are not able to express their emotions with verbal language yet. I wanted to take out the wound and show it to the parents. I wanted to let people know that children feel the same way as adults, and to create opportunities and behavioral changes to think about child human rights through an opportunity to realize the fear of words.
AME Awards: Was your client Save the Children on board immediately with the concept?
Yumi Sul: Of course. Save the Children has spread "positive discipline" through YouTube content, parent seminars and lectures. What I've always worried about is how to create greater social empathy and echoes. The "100 Words Pain_ting” campaign was a complete reversal of the existing approach. It's not about adults teaching and enlightening, but about children who are victims. Save the Children marveled at the groundbreaking views and ideas, and immediately agreed with our view that they would exert greater social influence than any existing campaign.
AME Awards: Talk about the period from inspiration to Final execution of the campaign?
Yumi Sul: December 18, 2018. We proposed a campaign to Save the Children, and it was decided to run on the same day. January 2019. We selected 100 words from child psychology experts. In February, 297 children picked hurt words out of 100 words and drew pictures. Their parents were invited to the exhibition and recorded the whole process. February 22, 2019. The online exhibition was opened with 100 selected paintings, and the campaign videos inducing website went live. On February 28 the first offline exhibition was held. This was the end of the campaign preparations. For about three months, I had a hectic life as if I were in a war. After that, it was time to operate and manage exhibitions, check responses to SNS, and cover the media. And finally, we witnessed the power of viral; the campaign was expanding itself. The offline exhibition, originally planned for a single event until May 2019, was expanded to 59 invitational exhibitions in 17 cities at the request of various parts of the country and is still flooded with invitations.
AME Awards: Share any creative and logistical challenges you faced throughout the campaign and how you solved them?
Yumi Sul: The core idea of the campaign was a picture drawn by children themselves. I was worried in advance because it was not something, we couldn’t control. Will the scar be expressed as much as we expect and beautiful too? Therefore, we invited almost three times the number of children needed to minimize risk. But when the children finished their work, I found such worries to be groundless. Rather, it was much more difficult to choose only 100 paintings.
Seung Eun Jang: Securing a large number of paintings was cause for anxiety, but on the other hand, I believed that children's paintings would be better than any other established artist. Don't you know that Picasso devoted his life to painting like a child? Although the children's paintings are technically poor, they will have more power to move people's hearts. As expected, the children did not disappoint me.
Yumi Sul: Another challenge was the low budget. Because the media budget for the exhibition was hardly sufficient, the media mix was carefully planned. In order to increase the contact rate of parents, which is a key target, the TV ad time zone was elaborated, and it immediately flowed into the online exhibition as banner ads with the most notable picture in digital. Most of the budget was initially spent in the beginning of the campaign. Even a small number of visitors would be affected through passing information on by words of mouth and this prediction hit the mark.
AME Awards: Why do you think this campaign had such phenomenal success?
Seung Eun Jang: I think it's because the children showed their own mind. It's not a campaign for adults to enlighten other adults. Children's paintings have as beautiful artistic power as any famous artists, so it has gained destructive viralness beyond budget limits. I think the art director, creative director of this campaign, was not Rosa or me, but the children.
AME Awards: What was Save the Children’s reaction to the results of the campaign? What results were you most proud of and why?
Yumi Sul: It was beyond words. We rejoiced together. It was a success far beyond expectations. The results of the numbers, such as the number of visitors to online and offline exhibitions and the rise in brand indicators, were also pleasing, but the most rewarding thing was that we created an opportunity for Korean society to improve its perception of parents' verbal violence and child human rights. I feel proud whenever I hear comments from parents online, news and articles, exhibition requests from all over the country, thank-you calls from parents who came to the company, and feedback from people saying thank you for letting me know the weight of the words.
AME Awards: “100 Words Pain_ting” was awarded the AME Regional Platinum Award – Asia Pacific, multiple Golds and Silver AME Awards and the top slot on the AME Report what did this accomplishment mean to you, the team, and the client?
Jang Seung Eun: Korea is a non-English speaking country, but it has no limits, and we are happy to prove our belief that the world will react to our favorite campaigns. Director Bong Joon-ho, who dominated Cannes and Oscar for non-English-speaking films with "Parasite," may feel like this. We are also proud that Overman's promise to return maximum performance to clients through functional creative is recognized by the world's most trusted advertising system. Overman is the fastest growing advertising company in Korea. That's how devoted we are. AME is a reward for the sweat of the past five years since its foundation and has given us energy to run again for the next five years. Thank you very much.
AME Awards: What is next for Save the Children?
Seung Eun Jang: Good news! There are more brands looking for Overman. For now, I would like to find a real breakthrough in sales rebound for companies suffering from a slump caused by the Covid19. On the other hand, I would like to seek to create a better world with Brand Activism with the power brands that have visited us. Sooner or later, I will knock on the door of AME again with an unimaginable campaign.