Client: Men’s Health Magazine
PR Team: De Vere Publicity for Men’s Health Magazine, in-house team at
Campaign: National Men’s Health Week
Timescale: Three months preparation for awareness week, 10-16 June
Cost: pounds 29,000 provided by sponsor, PPP healthcare
Despite an increasing preoccupation with health issues, the media have
seldom singled out men as a targeted market, whereas the women’s press
have made substantial in-roads in health-related issues.
At its launch in 1995, organised by De Vere Publicity, Men’s Health
magazine spearheaded a Men’s Health Awareness Campaign followed by the
first ever survey of masculine attitudes towards fitness and health.
The initial campaign caught the Zeitgeist, generating substantial media
interest. The agency sought to maintain the momentum with the launch of
a National Men’s Health Week in 1996 to coincide with the publication of
the now annual Men’s Health survey.
To reinforce the Men’s Health Awareness Campaign message of preventative
healthcare tying in directly with the branding and somewhat humorous
lifestyle approach of Men’s Health magazine.
De Vere Publicity traded on Men’s Health magazine’s expertise, creating
news stories relevant to its content and market which were then sold
into television, radio and press nationwide.
The Men’s Health Awareness Campaign had already generated widespread
interest and the media was receptive to the introduction of Men’s Health
The awareness week was launched at a press conference at the Savoy Hotel
with the week drawing appropriately to a close on Father’s Day. For the
launch, De Vere originated a 32-page male health booklet sponsored by
PPP healthcare in addition to an in-depth press pack on the results of a
second Men’s Health Awareness Campaign Survey.
The survey, based on the magazine’s own questionnaire, provided the
media with a variety of angles, including the disturbing fact that six
out of ten men are not registered with a doctor. The survey also looked
at body image, which revealed that only four per cent of men categorised
themselves as very attractive, with 82 per cent of men saying that they
are not happy about their bodies.
PPP also supported the campaign with a free two week 24-hour telephone
help line, with every caller receiving a dossier of advice on their
Men’s Health’s ABC circulation for January to June 1996 was up by 14.7
per cent on the same period last year at the same time as converting to
monthly magazine. The awareness week was covered in ten known television
slots including ITN News, 230 radio interviews, 31 national press
cuttings and 125 regional cuttings. PPP’s healthcare line averaged 30
cases a day.
Awareness weeks have proliferated and are no longer news in themselves -
Men’s Health Week is rumoured to have coincided with Broccoli Awareness
Week! It was the solid backing of the survey information, booklet and
healthline that successfully kick-started Men’s Health Week which is now
set to become an annual event.
How clearly the public associated the Men’s Health awareness week with
Men’s Health magazine has not been established but private healthcare
specialist PPP believes that the coverage achieved its objective of
building brand awareness and values and promoting the preventative role
De Vere Publicity plans to build on the 1996 success, getting GPs
involved next year while opening up further sponsorship opportunities.