plan B: Humour + user-generated content

Although contraceptive 'accidents' are no joke, Taxi Montreal and Media Experts combined cheeky humour and street teams to increase brand awareness, entertain and educate women aged 20 to 29 about plan B, the emergency contraceptive also known as the morning-after pill. The result is 'Share Your Oops,' a national summer program created for Montreal-based Paladin Labs that entails guerrilla marketing, event sponsorship, campus and resto bar efforts, interactive OOH, digital and magazine. As the name suggests, it also invites consumers to share their personal stories.

Although contraceptive ‘accidents’ are no joke, Taxi Montreal and Media Experts combined cheeky humour and street teams to increase brand awareness, entertain and educate women aged 20 to 29 about plan B, the emergency contraceptive also known as the morning-after pill. The result is ‘Share Your Oops,’ a national summer program created for Montreal-based Paladin Labs that entails guerrilla marketing, event sponsorship, campus and resto bar efforts, interactive OOH, digital and magazine. As the name suggests, it also invites consumers to share their personal stories.

Randy Newman, account planner for Media Experts in Montreal, says in the past media for plan B has stuck to resto bars and washrooms in campuses, because that’s where the target is, and it also allowed for gender targeting. ‘This year we’re doing things a little differently, because we saw through testing that our market had become desensitized. So it was time to ramp it up a bit.’

Share Your Oops began in early June at Toronto’s independent music festival North by Northeast (NXNE). In addition to sponsoring some of the concerts and having a booth onsite, women wearing plan B-branded clothing distributed nearly 2,000 pairs of Tagalongs disposable underpants tied with a branded wrap and the line, ‘The I should have kept my panties on pill.’ plan B is also sponsoring the POP Montreal festival, Oct. 3-7, and street teams will be there with another round of disposable panty giveaways.

With the creative concept built around the line, ‘The ______ pill,’ Newman says interactivity was a natural component of the campaign. Multiple copy lines have been created to describe incidents when plan B is necessary, ranging from the straightforward ‘The the condom broke pill’ to ‘The I had 5 martinis, 6 shots of tequila, danced with my bra on the outside of my shirt, met a hot guy, took him back to my place and I don’t remember the rest, not even if we used a condom pill.’

Digital video billboards onsite carried many of Taxi’s lines, and those attending NXNE were encouraged to add their own ‘oops’ directly to the boards through mobile messaging. This interactive feel continues with the use of holographic boards where a different tagline is seen depending on the angle from which it is being viewed.

In addition to live marketing in Toronto and Montreal, there are a number of national components. In late June shareyouroops.ca launched, along with OOH, print and online ads urging women to go and share their stories. Boards placed in dressing rooms of various women’s clothing retailers

have tear-off pads printed with

‘The _____ pill’ and the microsite’s URL to encourage participation, and online banners running on sites such as Facebook and MySpace and networks such as MSN allow viewsers to type their ‘oops’ directly into the ad.

Other elements running throughout the summer include lenticulars, mini-boards and extra-lights placed in bars/clubs and mirror-adjacent in bathrooms. At the end of summer, additional media will be added to reach students in bars and clubs on and around university campuses to take the campaign through to December.