Victorian Government’s ‘powerful’ Deadly Questions campaign takes home Ad of the Month for June

Mumbrella has revealed the winner of the June edition of Ad of the Month, with the industry choosing between TAB, Pfizer, Amazon, Victorian Government, and Hyundai.

Clemenger BBDO Melbourne’s Deadly Questions campaign for the Victorian Government has won Ad of the Month for June, taking a landslide 66% of the vote.

The campaign encouraged Australians to ask any question to a member of the Aboriginal community through the Deadly Questions website, no matter how ignorant they may seem.

“A difficult issue handled with great care and strategic smarts,” wrote one voter. Another added: “The Vic Government’s Deadly Questions website was the first thing I’ve seen of this nature. I thought it was an incredibly grounded and important statement for Victoria to make and opened up the conversation for people who are less confident with their knowledge of Indigenous culture.”

Several respondents noted how the campaign helped Victoria push through its Aboriginal treaty bill, with one saying: “Deadly Questions helped make a change to our laws. That’s surely got to be better than just selling more stuff.”

The Deadly Questions campaign attracted media attention last month when the ads were pulled from APN Outdoor properties.

APN Outdoor took issue with two of the campaign’s executions following advice from the Outdoor Media Association (OMA).

APN Outdoor CEO and managing director, James Warburton, said in a statement to Mumbrella: “We referred the ads in question to the Advertising Standards Bureau, which is usual practice. The ASB advised that some of the ads might be in breach. This information was conveyed to the agency.”

Under the OMA Code of Ethics, OMA members must comply with the AANA Code of Ethics. The OMA has also developed an Advertising Content Policy which includes the directive: “An OMA member will not post an advertisement if the OMA’s copy advice states that the advertisement is likely to breach a self-regulatory code”.

A spokesperson for Aboriginal Victoria, said in a statement: “We understand that some of the questions asked by the public – and that we are repeating in the campaign – are provocative, but that’s the point. To have an open discussion we need to acknowledge that some ugly viewpoints exist.

“We need our media partners to stand up and support Aboriginal Victorians throughout this process. It’s incredibly disappointing to have APN and the OMA dictate what they think is appropriate with regards to discrimination, when these questions are ones that we invited, are providing responses to, and represent the real conversation that Victorians want to have.”

Simon Lamplough, managing director at Clemenger BBDO Melbourne, said Ooh Media has decided to run the campaign instead.

“The campaign was developed in partnership with Aboriginal Victorians and the Treaty Working Group to provide a platform that encourages discussion amongst all Victorians about the issue of Treaty.

“Our brief was to change perceptions and create work with cultural impact.”

Hyundai’s Socceroo ads came in second place with 20% of the vote.


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