FCB & Run work with the Electoral Commission to usher in changes to Māori Electoral Option with light and colour

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AUCKLAND, Today: FCB Aotearoa, Run Aotearoa and the Electoral Commission have worked together to create an awareness campaign around significant changes to the Māori Electoral Option.

Sand Unity Kotahitanga builds on previous Māori Electoral Option campaigns centred around The Sandman – aka artist Marcus Winter (Te Roroa, Ngāpuhi), who creates whakairo-inspired artworks using the medium of sand.

This time, Winter is out of his small studio, and surrounded by space, light and friends, all participating in making one of his “jaw dropping” creations on a giant lightbox.

The tvc is directed by Collider’s Ray Edwards (Whakatōhea, Raukawa), who used layered hologauze and a giant LED screen to flood Winter’s world with an ethereal colourscape and images of different natural and urban environments, representing the diversity of Māori within Aotearoa.

Run CCO Raymond Otene McKay said: “It was important to us to honour the whakapapa of Marcus’s contribution to previous campaigns, but then dream even bigger. Our Māori cast were so beautiful together and the warmth of the shoot really comes through in the final piece.”

FCB co-chief creative officers Leisa Wall and Peter Vegas said: “We love working on projects with our friends at Run and couldn’t be happier with the amazing job Ray Edwards has created.”


“The campaign rolls out on TV, online video, radio, digital audio, print, out-of-home, social, digital and media partnerships.”

Historically, Māori could only choose between the Māori roll and the general roll when they first enrolled to vote, and following that, during the Māori Electoral Option every five years. As of 31 March 2023, Māori can choose to change rolls at any time except in the three months before an election.

The Electoral Commission hopes this message plus the ease with which people can now switch rolls will lead to higher participation by Māori in elections.

Electoral Commission comms manager Suzanne Knight-Tinirau said: “Marcus Winter’s sand art will be a familiar prompt to voters that the ads are about the option.

We’re thrilled with the evolution of this campaign signalling changes to when Māori can make their roll choice.”

FCB Media head of connections planning Philippa Allnuttsaid : “The work is amazing, and it’s been a really collaborative process between agencies, clients and media partners to bring it to life through some exciting media placements and partnerships.”

Sand Unity Kotahitanga is rolling out across television, online video, radio, digital audio, print, out of home, social, digital and media partnerships, from 31 March until 13 July.


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