10 anti-taboo marketing campaigns shortlisted for the Drum Awards for Social Purpose

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Ahead of our final awards ceremony of 2021 – The Drum Awards for Social Purpose which will be streamed live on thedrum.com later today – we take a look at one of the most important and encouraging trends to emerge from our rewards program this year: brands broken taboos.

Rather than avoiding topics that were previously banned in advertising, 2021 is full of examples of brands leaning into and attempting to tackle the taboo topics that still permeate society.

From dispelling the shame of the era with the introduction of red blood onscreen to discussing sexual health, diversity and more, the ads are more courageous in what they face, crushing the portrayals. outdated stereotypes of modern life to present a more realistic, inclusive and healthy perspective. And it looks like this trend is having a huge impact – whether it’s attracting new audiences, reaping benefits and effecting change, breaking taboos resonates with consumers and proves useful for specialists. marketing.

Here, we select 10 anti-taboo campaigns from this year’s shortlisted work for the Drum Awards for Social Purpose.

10. Hairy Tales by Tangle Teaser

This Don’t Cry Wolf book series was launched during Black History Month in the United States to alleviate hair discrimination based on race. By reinventing traditional fairy tales to feature black characters in a number of hair-related situations, the campaign provided useful and educational messages on maintaining black and afro hair. The activism campaign was written by and featured black talent, and worked to create conversations about under-representation in the media.

Entering the Campaign of the Year (for-profit) category of awards – and winner of the Consumer Products or Services category at the 2021 Drum Awards for PR held earlier this year – this campaign has been found to be pivotal in standardizing the way whose black and afro hair is seen in the public domain. Click here to learn more about this campaign.

9. Adopt a grandparent for coronary heart disease

Ageism is a rarely talked about issue, but this Pic PR initiative highlights the loneliness and dissociation that older people can feel as they find a way to connect them to new communities. The Adopt a Grandparent program – which was nominated in the Best Public Relations Campaign category – shares the work of the twinning charity in tackling loneliness and spreading joy. The TV spots have shown how connections can be made despite age differences and the invaluable impact they can have. Click here to find out more.

8. Period for Intimina

Menstrual blood only appeared on the screen for the first time last year. Now the Pantone paint brand has taken over by launching a custom red color that represents menstruation. The campaign, created by COW, was entered in the Campaign of the Year (for-profit) category for its efforts to de-stigmatize the color of rules, normalize bodily functions, and make rules a topic people think about. be able to speak openly.

7. Changing Perceptions of Childhood Obesity for the Consumer Goods Forum

This BBC StoryWorks Commercial Productions video campaign was nominated in the Best Video Campaign category, thanks to its work highlighting the inequalities behind childhood obesity. The film is part of The Collaboration for Healthier Lives partnership between Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity and reveals the complex social issues associated with overweight children. It provides emotional insight into parents who cannot afford healthy food choices for their children and the options available to them. More information about the campaign can be found here.

6. Empowerium for the girls’ network

This tongue-in-cheek campaign by Equals wryly pokes fun at efforts to improve gender equality in order to highlight how much remains to be done. The team created a satirical online store promoting non-existent products with the goal of empowering women. The collection includes items like a ‘have it all’ tote or pay gap filler, but when consumers walked to the checkouts they were redirected to donate to The Girls’ Network charity. . This campaign was entered in the Best Use of Creativity category and led to the opening of a follow-up pop-up store, exhibition space and event in London in December.

5. Restore sound for Unilever

This integrated campaign by Weber Shandwick saw the creation of Unilever’s internal campaign policy targeting domestic violence. The policy described what domestic violence looks like and created a guide for victims seeking training or support. The efficiency of the deployment even saw two of the company’s own employees use Unilever’s pack to escape abusive situations. Domestic violence isn’t often talked about due to the shame that surrounds it, but this campaign – entering the Best in Brand Purpose category – aimed to tone down any sense of judgment about domestic violence and focus on dissemination instead. practical advice.

4. Breast cancer tests for Tyla and Play-doh

Breasts are still considered a taboo topic online and they are still heavily censored on some social platforms, which is why LADbible Group created an innovative campaign using Play-Doh to encourage women to continue to regularly check their breasts. The video – entered in the Best Brand / Charity Collaboration category – aims to provide clear advice on how to medically assess bodies, without sexualizing the female body – so that the campaign remains informative and useful.

3. What’s up with everyone?

This series of smooth Aardman animations encourages people to consider their mental well-being and to question the culture of comparison. The campaign was nominated in the Best Social Media Campaign category for its efforts to de-stigmatize low self-esteem, self-doubt and feelings of overwhelm by offering an online platform and login service. ‘assistance. The campaign was rolled out on social networks and its simplistic animations make the message clear to understand.

2. Think outside the box for Tyla and Tampax

The Tampax brand of stamps created a fun campaign to dispel myths and fears surrounding inserting stamps into this campaign, which was nominated for Best Social Media Campaign. With a comic book and accompanying short film rolled out on Tyla, the ad provided useful information presented in a fun and engaging way paired with colorful illustrations. Learn more about the campaign here.

1. Help women consolation #MakeItStop

This shocking video campaign highlights the trauma suffered by women and children who experience domestic sexual abuse and sexual violence. This MBA Stack campaign was placed in two categories, the new category Best Use of Creativity and Best Video Campaign. Her clear message urges people to report domestic violence before it’s too late and offers resources for those who may not know whether or not to intervene. It’s a powerful campaign that normalizes how often domestic violence actually occurs.

Click here for a full list of nominations before the Drum Awards for Social Puprose. You can watch the event live on thedrum.com from 4:00 p.m. GMT on Wednesday, December 8.


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