In a new purpose campaign for Bayer Consumer Health’s antifungal product Canesten, the University of Down Under (get it?) has been launched to educate young women about their intimate health. Interactive virtual university ‘lessons’ have been designed to deliver bite-sized health factoids and myth-busting sessions on vaginal health and particularly thrush, a condition that apparently affects 75 per cent of women in Australia.
The lessons were designed using consumer data from the brand’s 2021 Intimate Health Report Card, where over 1000 female-identifying Australians were surveyed. Worryingly, a majority of those surveyed said that their vaginas were “not normal” and just under half said intimate health conditions such as thrush induced feelings of shame, embarrassment and discomfort.
Hosted by Bachelor contestant Abbie Chatfield, the interactive lessons cover topics such as physiology, biology, and psychology and ‘students’ can manoeuvre between different topics based on their preferences.
We think this campaign has been handled efficiently and cleverly, and we enjoyed Chatfield’s upbeat, honest, matter-of-fact delivery style. We particularly likes that the course script includes plenty of assurance and comfort for young people, who often gather their perspectives of vaginal health (and many matters of biology, for that matter) through unrealistic portrayals in movies and porn. This is most definitely a step-up from the Australian government’s bizarre attempt at a sex education campaign earlier this year, which infantilised its target audience.
The digital-led campaign includes strategy, creative, earned media, influencer and stakeholder relations activity led by DEC PR. This includes the University of Down Under (#UdoU) concept, the aforementioned consumer research, talent relations with Abbie Chatfield, Shani Chantel and Maggie Zhou, and stakeholder outreach to relevant healthcare, allied health and education professionals. The agency also designed the ‘choose-your-own-adventure’ interactive video course in collaboration with video production company Visual Domain and Vudoo, a SaaS pioneer of interactive video.
A version of this article first appeared on Campaign Asia-Pacific.