The Huaxia Animal Protection Foundation has partnered DDB China Group to take a stand and say enough is enough as every year in China, 73 million sharks are decapitated to make shark fin soup. Close to 800 million minks are skinned for their fur, and over 10,000 bears are disemboweled for their gall bladders, which are made into Chinese medicine.
In China, less attention is paid to animal protection issues as there are in the West, and some Chinese cultural traditions result in unnecessary cruelty to animals. While there have been campaigns to raise awareness of these issues, they have mostly fallen on the deaf ears of governments, trade industries and the public.
As these animals don’t have a voice to speak for themselves, no one could hear their cries for help. A a powerful voice is needed to speak up and sound off a cry for help – a spokesperson that simply cannot be ignored. DDB China decided to enlist parrots for the mammoth task of being not just animal protection spokespersons, but the world’s first spokes-animals. For months, DDB taught them how to speak messages of help and animal advocacy and trained them to stand in front of a microphone and speak up for other animals who couldn’t do so themselves.
Spokes-animals then took our message directly to various point-of-sale locations of animal-cruelty products in Shanghai — such as restaurants serving shark’s fin, fur and leather fashion stores, and traditional Chinese medicine shops. The campaign’s hard–hitting message was: “Not all animals have a voice.”
As a result of the campaign, public awareness of wildlife conservation in China was raised by 56%, and 79% of consumers we interviewed indicated that they would stop buying animal-cruel products after being exposed to the campaign. The campaign was shortlisted at the 2011 Cannes Lions Festival in three different categories: Media, Direct, and PR.
“There are few things more compelling than hearing an animal appeal on behalf of other animals. It’s an unconventional way to speak to a jaded audience and hopefully it can add another voice in the fight for animal rights in China. Going by how humans have been mistreating animals, we are the real animals here.” — Victor Ng, ECD of DDB Shanghai
Chief Creative Officer: Michael Dee
Executive Creative Director: Victor Ng
Creative Director: Jody Xiong
Copywriter: Victor Ng, Jason Jin
Art Director: Jody Xiong, Cong Ding, Jack Xuan
Agency Producers: George Ooi, Rico Zhang, Chongwen Zhu
Production Manager: James Chen
Directors: Qingsong Liang, Qiu Bo
Photographer: Keno Zhao