Statistically, people from seeking and receiving proper mental

Statistically, 4 out of every 10 Malaysians will experience mental health
problems at some point in their lives (Kanyakumari, 2017). Despite poor mental
health or a neurological condition affecting such large proportions of society,
most suffer in silence (Martin, 2017) and, according to the Business Insider,
85% of the world’s population find that the stigma attached to mental health
prevents them from getting treatment or talking about it (Dodgson, 2017). Our
magazine “FLOURISH” is devoted to fighting this stigmatization and the other
barriers that prevent people from seeking and receiving proper mental
healthcare by increasing awareness of mental health issues, conditions, and
illnesses. We hope to inspire positive changes by normalizing conversations about
mental health in our society’s daily lives, especially for people affected by
mental health issues.


Our marketing campaign to promote “FLOURISH” is all about
inclusivity and intersectionality—things often superficially talked about and
looked over. We will be employing the use of strong visual mediums via guerilla
art, poster, and video to be delivered by social media and physical poster
distribution and display (i.e. shops and cafes). Text will be carefully
designed to ease reading for people with learning difficulties (i.e. dyslexia)
and the models used will actually be representative of our society (i.e. a
well-rounded variety of bodies, faces, and identities). Furthermore, any images
used will be mindful of the potential to cause distress in individuals with
post-traumatic stress syndrome (PTSS). The promotional video will also include
subtitles for hearing impaired individuals, and will play as advertisements on
video streaming websites like YouTube and Vimeo.

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will also promote “FLOURISH” on the airwaves with advertisements on radio,
podcasts, and streaming services (i.e. Spotify, Deezer, etc.). These auditory
advertisements hope to include and benefit hearing people with visual
impairments. The advertisements will be no longer than 8 seconds, will not
involve loud or disruptive sounds (e.g. vehicular accidents, screaming, etc.),
and will not be played too frequently to avoid putting off listeners (i.e. once
every half hour). All advertising and promotions, audio and visual, will
air/present at any time of the day, but will play with more frequency at night
and in the small hours of the morning.

Additionally, the proposal for the “FLOURISH” campaign
will be assessed, approved, and tested by a consulting team of people living
with mental health conditions and illnesses, and professional mental health
workers before it will be released to the general public. Supervision and
advice from the same team will also carry on into the entirety of the
campaign’s run to ensure responsibility and integrity of our vision and
objectives. Flexibility and safety is a primary concern, and any input for
changes would be welcome at any point of the project, and implemented by
necessity and feasibility.

While the marketing materials and publication of
“FLOURISH” will currently only be in English; audiobook, e-book, and Braille
versions will also be available alongside physical versions. In the future, we
hope to be able to make “FLOURISH” and all pertaining materials available in
Malay, Tamil, Mandarin, and Malaysian Indigenous languages.

Moving on, making “FLOURISH” as accessible and inclusive
as sustainably possible equates to more people being able to enjoy and find
benefit with our magazine. We will also be one of very few publications (and
quite possibly the first Malaysian and even Southeast Asian) to make
substantial efforts in promoting inclusivity by actually ‘walking the walk’ in
addition to ‘talking the talk’. Going against the mainstream grain that often
ignores society’s most vulnerable and marginalized people tends to invoke
attention and publicity, especially with the heavy involvement of the subject
of inclusivity in today’s political landscape; which would result in free
promotions for “FLOURISH”. Furthermore, we will also contact public figures and
famous people to request their endorsement and promotion of “FLOURISH” and its
campaign if they like the product and message. Having prominent people in the
public sphere come out in support of mental health destigmatization would be of
great support to the cause, more so if they happen to live with mental
illnesses and issues. We believe that this would speak louder volumes to our


For our main method of delivery, social media was an easy
choice for its easily accessible, available, often economical, and widespread
reach in a short amount of time. The “FLOURISH” campaign will operate from its
official social media accounts (i.e. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube)
and feature our campaign materials on these websites. No longer rare nor a solo
activity, social media has various presences in everyday life. One of which is online
networking, and by engaging readers by posting about mindfulness techniques and
awareness blurbs about mental health problems (bite-sized and easily consumed) can
be beneficial to individuals while increasing outreach to potential readers.

Moreover, service clients and their families have
distinctive assumptions about how their associations with mental health
administrations and experts should be (Belmont 2017). Thus, social media can
help demonstrate how mental health workers use social media in gaining better
understanding and knowledge on best practices in improving mental health;
making it an effective device for individuals to help each other and assemble
working groups online (Betton & Tomlinson 2013). In addition to this, social
media helps individuals experiencing difficulties with relational connections feel
heard, acknowledged, and supported. According to a survey by Time to Change,
released for Time to Talk Day, 47% of people aged 21 and under said they found
it easiest to talk about their mental health problems online, compared to 49%
preferring it face-to-face and 4% for phone calls (Cresci 2015).


Making the purchase experience as smooth as possible is
vital to the continuation of “FLOURISH”. We plan to make subscription purchases
and donations as diverse and convenient as possible by offering secure and
reputable online payment methods through credit card channels (VISA,
Mastercard, etc.), internet banking (Maybank2u, CIMBClicks, etc.), e-wallets
(AliPay, Google Wallet, etc.), over-the-counter payments (MOLPay, iPay88,
etc.), Bitcoin, and PayPal. A cash-on-delivery option will also be available,
and each physical copy will also come with a subscription insert to be filled
out and returned via mail order for those who like it the old-fashioned way.
And finally, QR codes leading to the “FLOURISH” website and online payment page
will be included in each issue.


will have the option of subscribing to a minimum of 1 up to 12 issues of
“FLOURISH” before a subscription renewal. A subscription of 2 issues or more in
one transaction will give them a 10% discount off the recommended retail price
of RM9. This discount amount will increase in increments of 5% with each additional
issue they sign up for in one transaction, encouraging longer term
subscription. Each issue will come with freebies and coupons from sponsors and
companies we hope to collaborate with. The retail price for “FLOURISH” will
remain the same across Malaysia, with readers only needing to pay for the
shipping and delivery costs no matter where they are in the country.      

“FLOURISH” speaks to a vast audience as mental health
issues do not discriminate. People who are struggling and too afraid to speak out
could use the magazine as a private, personal, and portable friend to encourage
them to seek help or to help others, perhaps even utilizing “FLOURISH” as a
stepping stone in overcoming or fighting the barriers of mental health
stigmatization at their own pace. The cover’s simplicity aims to be
eye-catching but mindful of sensory overload. This contrasts most of today’s
magazines that are usually packed with a jumbling miscellany of
sensationalizing words and images that often distract from the main point of
the publication.


For our debut issue, a cloudy background was chosen to
imbue a sense of peacefulness, with corresponding color choices to supplement
this tone. The 5 words, ‘TOUCH’, ‘SMELL’, ‘TASTE’, ‘HEAR’, and ‘SEE’ highlight
the 5 main segments that make up the magazine. Additionally, our magazine’s
motto of ‘feed your brain, stimulate your
senses’ is positioned below to inspire healthy brain activity while

In the world of marketing, it would seem like there are
consistently new tips, tools, tricks, and trends to explore and incorporate
into your marketing strategies. The nature and range of the changes that have
influenced marketing over the past years has increased, observed to have been
mainly affected and motivated by the fundamental changes in society. Though a
massive variety of platforms exist within such a technique, the marketing
strategies of magazines must be precise (Cartwright 2017). A vast number of
topics are being covered and each will be presented in its own way, which will ensure
to catch and keep the audience’s attention.


However, many serious issues and topics are still being
largely misrepresented and thus misunderstood, like our magazine’s main topic:
mental illness and issues. Many would think that it is too difficult or naive to
enlighten people about the topic and help those who are passing through it with
a magazine. But we strongly believed that a deep understanding, compassion, and
awareness was instrumental in helping us start and keep going in finding ways to
provide resources in building up a reader’s co-insurances; helping them
overcome their obstacles, and perhaps positively affecting their inner selves in
a way that turns them unto the world with the purpose of helping others. To
pass it on, if you will. In fact, we thought, what better tool than art to
stimulate the senses?


 Researchers have
explored the relation between engaging creative arts and health improvement (Malchiodi 2016).
This vital perspective is reflected
in the World Health Organization’s (WHO) 1946 preamble, where health is defined
“as a state of complete physical, mental,
and social well-being rather than merely the absence of disease or infirmity”.
Whereas, interacting with artistic activities or even observing the creative
efforts of others can improve one’s moods, emotions and other psychological states (Stuckey, H. and Nobel, J. 2010). We especially chose to use guerilla art to talk about
mental illnesses because of its history in challenging the status quo; it felt
more than appropriate. More than just colors on canvas, guerilla art is a
historically significant art form that represented a person or people’s radical
cause to call for change and awareness, whether against an authority or the
wrongs they felt were happening in the world (Martinique 2016).


are some examples of guerilla art posters that were used to increase awareness
about mental health issues and illnesses. These images also served to inspire
our own poster design:

are an intelligent and financially savvy method for conveying messages, and
appealing ones can bait adjacent individuals into a particular occasion and
alert them of a forthcoming item or administration (Tolliday, 2017). We will display
the posters in high-traffic areas where people can’t help but notice them while
they wait for their purchases or transportation. Keeping things simple with
minimal information in large font will heighten visibility from a distance and
encourage maximum exposure.


Wearing Edward DeBono’s red thinking hat for the tagline
of ‘hope is real’ aims to convey a
powerful and emotionally driven message that hope exists for all
unconditionally from people who understand and truly know. For a subject with
as long and arduous a history as mental health has, compassion, understanding,
sensitivity, and sincerity are things that are greatly needed in order to make
a project such as this work.


promotional video for “FLOURISH” is no longer than 15 seconds long, and was
created with stock video, audio, and image files from VideoHive, Mazwai, Pexels
Videos, and Pexels. With our video, we want to come in calmly and comfortingly
while getting our points across concisely. Our approach has the potential to
bore viewers but to avoid that, we aim to keep it short and simple and
incorporate some lively music and imagery that would compel one to pay
attention. The video ends with a call to join “FLOURISH” in its goal to break
down the barriers of the stigma plaguing our attitudes towards mental health issues
and illnesses, followed by a reiteration of our magazine’s motto of ‘feed your brain, stimulate your senses’.


There will also be an audio advertisement no longer than
8 seconds available for airplay on music streaming services and the radio. All
sound effects used were sourced from ZapSplat, Audioblocks, and


voiceover work was provided by team member On Ee.

files are uploaded into the Google Drive on the TiMes Moodle website.

What we want to tell our readers with “FLOURISH” is that
it is totally okay whether they suffer with depression, anxiety, PTSS,
schizophrenia, dermatillomania, learning disorders/difficulties, etc. We want
to normalize and explain that living with these conditions are simply just
that: living.


Additionally, psychological illnesses and conditions are
not taken as seriously or as validly as biological illnesses and conditions and
are hence treated and dealt with disproportionately, even when both are
extremely debillitating and can affect each other adversely. This prevents many
people from receiving the healthcare they need and even discourages them from
trying (Holmes 2016). Even more alarmingly are the findings of an American
study that discovered that doctors neglected and were less likely to implement proper
care management procedures with patients that had depression, which was
significantly less care as opposed to conditions like diabetes, asthma, and
congestive heart failure (Bishop et al. 2016).


Especially for teenagers and young adults, we felt that
there were not enough magazines in present day circulation exclusively
committed to the discussion, improvement, and destigmatization of mental health
issues (Mahyuddin 2016; n.d.; n.d.). While our
magazine is for everyone and can be enjoyed by everyone, we ended up having
society’s youth in the front of our minds while designing the concept of our
magazine and marketing campaign.


Furthermore, what we have noticed locally is that most
magazines in Malaysia may only have a rare, infrequent, or one-off feature on
mental health in their issues. Or small blurbs and excerpts to support a
light-hearted and unrelated point they are trying to make (e.g. “Studies have
shown that chocolate DOES make you happier!”). At best, they may make a mental
health themed issue, but all of these actions that we have seen any popular
Malaysian publication make in regards to addressing mental health issues fails
to truly confront the stigma, taboo, misrepresentations, and harmful
stereotypes. It is as though there is a fear of exploring and addressing the
subject as they tend to keep things very light and simplistic and do not go
beyond that top layer of an extremely complex and complicated topic.


Ultimately, what we currently have in Malaysia is not
enough. We want to see a Malaysian magazine cause deep cracks the ground in
terms of making a positive impact in furthering the development, conversations,
and progress of mental health issues in Malaysia. What we wanted to see and
have, we have funneled into “FLOURISH”, and we trust that with the greater parts
of the little increments to our magazine that most others don’t have, our
magazine will truly flourish and most of all, help others to flourish.




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