Campaign: Healthcare PR - Durex adds weight to National Condom Week

Campaign: National Condom Week

Client: Durex

PR team: Myriad PR

Timescale: November 2003-May 2004

Budget: £30,000

National Condom Week, organised by Durex, aims to contribute to sexual health education by raising awareness of safe sex. For its seventh year, Durex asked retained PR agency Myriad PR to create a fresher look that would encourage more support. Objectives

To support healthcare professionals and teachers in communicating the safe-sex message to young people. To raise awareness of sexual health issues and the benefits of condom use. To reinforce the position of Durex as a leader in sexual health issues.

Strategy and Plan

To lend gravity and focus on health issues while keeping the Durex brand central to National Condom Week, the campaign was rebranded with a new identity incorporating the Durex logo.

Advertorials were placed in The Times Education Supplement and Nursing Standard to encourage teachers and healthcare professionals to register for resources, and a flyer was distributed at the Royal College of Nursing School Nursing Forum.

In November 2003, a national competition was launched, inviting schools and youth groups to design the official poster for the event, based around the theme 'Get it on for National Condom Week'. The winning poster, designed by two sixth-form students, was produced as part of a resource pack and distributed to schools and sexual health clinics across the country.

Also included were posters detailing the history of the condom, HIV and STI statistics, and advice on how to discuss contraception. Lesson plans were produced to help teachers push the safe-sex message.

Clinics were given the opportunity to request Durex condoms to distribute during the week, and reciprocal links were established between the National Condom Week website and sexual health organisations.

MPs with interest in sexual health issues were invited to back the campaign, and celebrity endorsement came from Sara Cox, Martin Clunes, James Cracknell and Emmerdale and Coronation Street actors.

Durex joined forces with Superdrug to donate 50p to the Terence Higgins Trust from each pack of Durex condoms sold in Superdrug stores during the week.

Measurement and Evaluation

The campaign resulted in more than 100 stories in national print and broadcast media, and media monitoring by Romeike placed overall coverage by the end of May at 50 million OTS.

Stories ran on BBC2 and Five and in The Sun, The Times and the Daily Mirror. Consumer magazines included Women's Health and Company.


Over 1,500 schools and clinics requested resource packs. In Parliament, four National Condom Week questions were submitted and answered, and two early day motions were tabled, which to date have received 92 supportive signatures from MPs.

Backing also came in the form of supportive quotes from 17 politicians.

National Condom Week was supported by sexual health organisations, including Brook and Caledonia Youth. UK managing director Mark Watson says: 'We applaud Durex for this campaign. Condoms are the simplest and most effective barrier to sexually transmitted infections and anything that encourages their greater use is very much welcomed.'

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