Is bigger always better?
August 1, 2014
For such a small country, the UAE certainly has a fixation about big things. This is, perhaps, most obvious when it comes to buildings – the country is renowned for the Burj Khalifa for example, which, at 828 meters, is the world’s tallest building. It is also home to the tallest hotel on the planet, the 355-meter Marquis hotel, and the tallest residential building – the 414-meter Princess Tower.
However, it is the quirky records that the country holds that really showcase how much size matters in this part of the world. Records such as the world’s largest cereal box, largest gold ring, largest automated parking facility and largest sticky note mosaic. Dubai Police have even proposed building a museum in the shape of a policeman’s cap –if built, it would set records for the world’s largest piece of headwear!
But perhaps super-sizing is not always to be welcomed – particularly when it comes to health matters. The plus-sized problems of high obesity and diabetes levels are a serious issue in the UAE, with a study this year by the University of Washington finding that more than 66 per cent of men and over 60 percent of women in the country were overweight or obese.
Should this nation obsessed with over-sized things focus therefore on a way to combat these alarming and unwelcome statistics? And, if so, to what extent can a clever, insightful marketing strategy help?
Maybe Coca-Cola can provide a good example, with Coca-Cola Great Britain’s £20 million anti-obesity drive aimed at getting one million people more active by 2020, as part of the brand’s Coca-Cola Zero ParkLives campaign. This activity also ties in with the company’s commitment to the Department of Health’s Responsibility Deal Calorie Reduction Pledge, launched in 2012 and also supported by – amongst others – Tesco and Mars. A scheme which shows that, with big brand support and positive, targeted marketing activity, a healthier lifestyle can be promoted right across the country.
Will the UAE government follow suit? Maybe, and maybe not. But one thing is certain. Tackling obesity rates across the UAE is a big opportunity for the right kind of forward-thinking, highly strategic, relentlessly creative marketing agency. And with some of the biggest thinkers around working for us, Campaign Works could be the perfect fit for the task. Watch this space…
by Rob Conway