Influencer showcase: People with HIV targeted with fantasy flight

An edgy campaign fronted by a flamboyant drag artist and featuring the Grindr dating app was not the most obvious partner for corporate pharma giant Gilead.

Panti Bliss, centre, with the team involved in the Flight HIV101 campaign
Panti Bliss, centre, with the team involved in the Flight HIV101 campaign

But when 90Ten was asked to come up with a campaign to motivate people living with HIV to be more health conscious as they get older, it persuaded its client that it was time to take a risk.

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And so the Flight HIV101 campaign was conceived, as a way of presenting the serious message of taking care of your health within a light-hearted context.

Targeting middle-aged gay men, who account for the majority of people with HIV, the agency worked with HIV-diagnosed influencers to create campaign content.

HIV-positive comedian and gay rights activist Panti Bliss was the face of the campaign and presented a short film, styled on a flight safety demonstration, encouraging people to prepare for their own ‘long haul flight’ by going to their doctor.

The film had more than 700,000 views and went viral among the gay community.

Influencers involved in the campaign spread the word using the Grindr dating app and pointed people to a website where they could do a health MOT on themselves.

Some 14,732 people went to the website, representing more than one in three (37 per cent) of the gay male population diagnosed with HIV. Of these, half went on to complete the health MOT. The campaign also resulted in 17,500 interactions on social media and an increase in stories in the gay media about healthy ageing with HIV.

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