Adweek recently profiled a new extended anti-terror TV commercial that’s actually going viral in the Middle East. It’s a 3 minute telecom ad that was created for Ramadan, when TV viewing increases throughout Arab countries. As Adweek reports, the spot “Features a range of nationalities pleading with a suicide bomber not to carry out an attack, by appealing to his faith, and sense of shame, with a gentler reading of what it means to be Muslim.”
It’s essentially a musical performed by Hussain Al Jassmi, an Emirati pop singer, delivering lines like “Worship your God with love not terror,” and “Let’s bomb delusion with the truth.” More interestingly, Adweek writes that “It also features video footage of scenes from actual terror attacks, like the 2016 bombing in the Karrada district of Iraq, and cameos from non-actors who were victims of such violence—like a father whose son was killed in that Baghdad attack, and a bride who survived a 2005 bombing attack on her wedding in Jordan.”
Apparently, it’s working because it’s being viewed and shared – with more than 5 million views on YouTube alone. This is a great example of how creative advertising can help engage serious culture issues. As I’ve written before, ISIS has a very sophisticated media campaign to win hearts and minds to their cause.
But this new anti-terror ad is a great example of how we should be using the media to fight back.