Urban Company launches #WearASmile Campaign – an initiative to humanise face masks across India

Mumbai: India and the UAE’s largest tech-enabled home services marketplace, Urban Company today unveiled #WearASmile – an initiative wherein all service professionals will be issued face masks with a smile on it. The company believes that while masks keep consumers and service professionals safe, they make people (service professionals) invisible by hiding their faces and humanity. To this effect, all professionals on the platform will be issued face masks with smiles on them – as a small reminder of the human behind the mask, and a way to humanise the mask itself.

Ever since pandemic-related restrictions were imposed in India March onwards, people have been wearing masks to safeguard themselves and the people around them. Although masks help people stay safe, they take away a basic sense of humanity from day to day life. The warmest human element, a smile, is no longer easily visible on people’s faces. Consequently, human interactions seem devoid of warmth. This is exacerbated for service professionals, who put their lives at risk to ensure consumers are living and working comfortably from home.

Acknowledging this, Urban Company’s #WearASmile campaign aims to allay this diminished human element between consumers and professionals, by adding a smile to the face mask.

Commenting on the initiative, Tarun Menon, Director – Marketing, Urban Company said, “For our service professionals, masks hide their faces, making them unrecognisable; hiding the individuals behind the masks. Through the pandemic, we’ve heard stories from around the world that have reaffirmed our faith in the indomitable human spirit. Our intent with this small change to the masks our service professionals wear is to make the face mask in itself a little more human, with the smallest of reminders of that unbeatable human spirit – a smile.”

This campaign goes live on 08 December with an ad film. Brands such as Uber, OYO, Big Basket, Ola Money and Pharmeasy have extended their support to this initiative – some will change their social media display pictures across platforms to their logos with smiling face masks on them in support.

In addition, Urban Company’s app icon will also change, to reflect the new smiling mask being issued to service professionals. At the outset of the pandemic, Urban Company was one of the first brands to add a facemask to their app icon, underscoring their commitment to offering safe services.

In the first month of the pandemic, Urban Company was quick to roll out a slew of initiatives as a safety net for service professionals, to ensure their livelihoods were not adversely impacted by the uncertainty the pandemic brought on. Some of these measures included:

1. Provided Interest-free business advances worth Rs. 11 Cr

2. Investment towards providing safety kits and PPEs to all our service professionals

3. COVID-19 health insurance and income protection

4. Relief fund with Srinidhi Foundation

5. Reimbursements of pre-paid credits with Urban Company worth INR 2 CR

This has resulted in high levels of satisfaction and productivity among service professionals, evidenced in the company’s consistently high partner NPS scores and the company’s growth through the pandemic. Time and again, Urban Company has launched unique initiatives, keeping service professionals in mind.

“It’s a very simple idea, but quite thoughtful. Wearing a mask with a smile definitely adds warmth to our covered faces and will bring some happiness to the customers we are servicing. I’m sure all service professionals will participate in this initiative with equal enthusiasm, ensuring it becomes a resounding success,” said Pinky, Service Professional – Urban Company.