Communicate speaks with Alexander Elsas, Head of Marketing and Communications of Mercedes-Benz Cars Middle East, to learn more about their new initiative titled ‘How To’ and what it hopes to achieve.
The Mercedes-Benz "How To" campaign, a global fashion storytelling platform aiming to nurture local fashion creative talent, launched in the region in October in collaboration with Fashion Forward. The campaign brings together artists, designers, and musicians within the #mbcollective which, in the region, features Saudi fashion designer Arwa Al Banawi, Saudi model Shahad Salman, and Dubai-based musician Layla Kardan, and focuses on self-improvement, celebrating curiosity, and encouraging one another to learn.
What were the reasons behind the introduction of this initiative in the region during the current crisis?
The ‘How To’ campaign, launched by Mercedes-Benz globally in 2019, brings together game-changing protagonists and extraordinary talents from across the region and offers an inspirational platform to members of the public to acquire new skills and achieve their goals.
The idea behind the campaign which is targeted at creatives is all about bettering themselves through skill-sharing and self-improvement, unlocking passion, and inquisitiveness.
The current climate, with new social rules and dramatic changes to the way we all live our lives, has proved to be the ideal time to launch the ‘How To’ campaign. It shows that positive change can be achieved regardless of the situation you find yourself in. [It also shows] that we can all aspire to evolve and grow our abilities and knowledge into something greater, by acquiring skills that will last a lifetime and open up new doors of opportunity.
The protagonists who participated in the ‘How To’ campaign are popular, positive, and influential figures who each have an eclectic appeal among residents, across the region. They each set goals that could be reached and have either made them a reality or [are] working towards it, through this campaign. Their popularity definitely contributed to the positive impact the campaign enjoyed and the way it was able to reach its audience in an upbeat and confident way. Thanks to the participants, ‘How To’ was received as a fantastic, optimistic, and constructive campaign that delivered a wonderful sense of aspiration that many can relate to.
Why did you select these specific themes for the regional version of the initiative?
The regional version of the ‘How To’ campaign is focused on self-improvement. It celebrates curiosity and encourages people to learn, to enrich their craft, and expand their talents into new and exciting directions.
The individuals chosen to be involved as the faces of the campaign are at the peak of their careers and are excelling in their chosen field of work. They truly represent some of the freshest, most exciting, and innovative talents in the worlds of art, culture, and fashion, which fits perfectly with Mercedes-Benz- as the brand has long been synonymous with these essential lifestyle elements. ‘How To’ was the push they needed to try something new, with the brand helping to spark a desire to make a dream a reality.
At the beginning of the campaign, each protagonist was asked what skills they wanted to learn. These goals were completely achievable, but for whatever reason, they have never felt comfortable enough to actively follow them through to fruition. In a region where the creative industry is burgeoning and, on the rise, initiatives such as the “How To” campaign provide us with an opportunity to showcase creativity, storytelling, and self-improvement.
What does the initiative hope to achieve?
By bringing together resourceful, talented and prominent individuals from different spheres of the arts and fashion worlds and sharing their inspirational stories with the region, the ‘How To’ campaign aims to inspire innovation and creativity among people of all ages and in all segments of society.
Mercedes-Benz has enjoyed a long association with the creative world, and we want this fruitful partnership to grow and expand into many more areas and spheres of knowledge and imagination.
The brand would not be where it is today without a passion and desire to redefine the principles and parameters of our industry and aspire to go beyond what was expected – we hope to stir the same appetite among the region’s young and creative community with ‘How To’ campaign.
How has it fared in other countries?
This is the first time ‘How To’ has been launched in the region, the global launch in 2019 was extremely successful and we will see this rolling out in more countries. It has been a wonderful call to action for all those involved, and equally for all those who have watched as the campaign has been rolled out in the media, to step out of their comfort zone and achieve their dreams.
It has helped to position the brand at the forefront of an exciting movement that celebrates taking the initiative, stepping into the spotlight, and making the exceptional happen.
What does the initiative bring in terms of innovation?
The ‘How To’ campaign shows that the desire to innovate, to modernize, and revitalize can be found deep in each of us – all we need is the opportunity to tap into this passion and drive to make it a part of our daily lives.
Having the confidence and the drive to step out of your comfort zone and learn a new skill is, especially in these tough times, incredibly important and shows a sense of strength, bravery, and forward-looking optimism, that is essential to successfully tackle any problem life puts in front of you.
A pioneering sense of adventure, a need to face down and overcome any and all challenges and ultimately to redefine the world on your terms is etched into the DNA of Mercedes-Benz. The spirit of adventure, of delivering ground-breaking excellence and revolutionary invention is what has inspired Mercedes-Benz since the company’s inception.
We’ve never been afraid of trying new things, of exploring new fields of work and ways of thinking – the ‘How To’ is an open invitation to us all to stop dreaming and start doing, it’s a platform from where we can launch into a brighter future and make the incredible happen in our lives