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Knowledge is Power: Top 5 Breast Cancer Awareness Campaigns

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, an annual worldwide campaign to highlight the importance of early detection, treatment, education and research. Through creativity, empathy, and thoughtfulness these campaigns have earned a place in our top 5 as the best examples of awareness done right.

Mercedes Benz: Crash Test Dummy Breast Self-Examination 

In a bid to raise funds for breast cancer research and awareness, Mercedes Benz placed an ad in the Netherlands Pink Ribbon magazine in 2007, tying together two seemingly unrelated issues, car safety and breast self-examinations, into a seamless ad. The ad depicted a crash test dummy performing her own self-exam with a small line of tongue in cheek copy at the bottom reading;

“Unfortunately, we can’t test everything for you”

Avon: Not Everything That Grows is Visible

Avon Slovakia joined the crusade against breast cancer going armpits deep in their 2005 print campaign. The ad showcased a woman reclining with one arm raised and one hand covering the breast closest to the camera. The woman made up to perfection, exposes her dark armpit hair which dramatically contrasts her otherwise impeccable hairless appearance. The text displayed furthers this juxtaposition circling back to the theme at hand;

“Not everything that grows is visible. Regular self-examining of your breasts can save your life.”

Rethink Breast Cancer: Your Man Reminder

Rethink Breast cancer set out to change the conversation surrounding breast cancer. In 2011, the company developed a humorous app to send women reminders from hot guys to think about their breast health and give themselves a little TLC (touch, look, check with your doctor). The app features six handsome men that will notify users to check their breasts, doctor's appointments and important facts about breast cancer along with generic compliments for that extra factor.

The app was launched with an accompanying viral video which received around 7.5 million views from all over the globe. Today, the app has been updated with new messages and new hotties to fit with the current trends ( hipster hotties). The app  now also has corresponding social media accounts on Instagram and Twitter to provide breast health information to young people directly on the platforms they use daily.

DDB Group Singapore for Breast Cancer Foundation Singapore: If Only You Checked Your Breasts As Often

In 2014, as part of their campaign for the Breast Cancer Foundation (BCF), DDB Group Singapore ran a campaign designed to remind women to check their breasts first thing in the morning.  The three-part eye-catching series plays on a social media theme tweaking the iconic logos of platform giants such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to mimic the shape of a hand touching a breast. The ads use the slogan “If only you check your breasts as often”, encouraging women to reflect on the small things they could be doing to live a healthier lifestyle.

Ulta Beauty: Breast Cancer Survivor’s first haircut

In 2015, Ulta Beauty shot a short film to raise funds for breast cancer research and awareness during the month of October, documenting a breast cancer survivor’s first haircut post-treatment. Mullen Lowe created the moving advert in collaboration with copywriter Tara Nelson, featuring a palindromic voiceover, initially full of despair but then flips the script halfway through. Speaking to Adweek Christy Blain, svp, group cd at Mullen Lowe, reflected on the ad's theme of fear of change:

"For a survivor, that first haircut is a moment of pride," says Blain. "It's a symbolic step toward moving forward. It's a moment to feel like herself again. The triumph of that first haircut was a moment that Ulta wanted to elevate to the masses because frankly, it's a moment many people could relate to. Lots of people think a haircut is something that just needs to happen every six weeks. Sometimes we take the simple act of being able to get a haircut for granted."

Laura Schembri

Laura Schembri

Digital Strategist

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