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Case Study: Undoing Foof-Faux-Pas

In 2016 Bodyform created the first ever period advert that featured a real life sanitary pad. In 2017 they took this a step further and created the first ever period-related advert that used actual blood, as well as man casually popping down to a local corner shop to buy pads. #bloodnormal was the # used as a driver to enable a wider audience to support Bodyform in their mission to undo the irrational taboo surrounding periods that has lead to an inability to discuss something that happens to half of the population. Bodyform went big on their content marketing to illustrate their point creating videos, using email marketing, social media, advertising & more.

Photo by @rainb0wkiss

This blog post may seem a little extreme, but please bare in mind the examples I'm talking about have likes in the 1000's, hugely high engagement, and followers that would fill a whole load of football pitches. The content is out there, I'm not just being controversial for funsies (partly for funsies too).

The how

When we break it down, these are the key elements that go into these hugely successful campaigns:

  1. A clear, meaningful message

  2. Excellent content

  3. A decent # to tie it all together

The leaders

Here are some key brands using social media to break through foof-faux-pas. Through exploring these brands you’ll discover they post a a collaboration of artists, influencers & educators who are using Instagram to make movements & support change:

🌹@shethinx: particularly in their recent campaign to educate people to rethink period sex. They’ve even created a sex blanket ‘for people with periods’.

🌸 @noxshop: followed a similar theme recently exploring period sex & orgasms on their blog. They then regrammed artist work to create eye-catching, thumb-stopping content. [don’t click here if you’re squeamish]

💥 The fact that their recent ‘anything you can do I can do bleeding’ post got over 2000 likes speaks for itself. If you can count on anyone to liberate the labia, it’s these guys.

🍒 @whatswrongwithmyvagina: a new but important instagram account that uses a mixture of humour, diary style posting, and inclusive content to openly discuss everything from infections to trans-related issues for those who may not have been born with a vagina but do have one now. Call her the insta-gyno.

👌@bloodygoodperiod: Providing period supplies for asylum seekers, refugees & those who can't afford them. Bleeding all over your Instagram. 🔴❤️ 🏳️‍🌈 #endperiodpoverty

🍆 @unboundbabes: taking the seediness out of sex shops through their products, educational content, and strong social media game.

😆 @lookatthispusssy: Because almost nothing is not a pussy.

The lesson

When we write a marketing proposal, or create a strategy, we look at how the consumer can be targeted by multiple angles & we look at what they care about. We live in an age where marketing requires widespread, consistent, repetitive messaging. Brands must go beyond the own needs and care about the consumer. Questioning closed mindedness and liberating their consumer to speak & live freely. That is conscious marketing.

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