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Finweek English Edition - - ADVERTISING & MARKETING -

Be funny. Be di­rect. Be crass. Be gross. But wait, there’s more. Be rel­e­vant. Be mul­ti­fac­eted. The for­mula for mar­ket­ing to youth is right there, ex­em­pli­fied in a se­ries of ads and in­ter­ac­tions by The Jupiter Draw­ing Room (Jo­han­nes­burg) for Ben­zac AC5, a treat­ment for a uni­ver­sal teenage scourge: zits.

Ac­com­pa­nied by lo­cal mu­sic, Des­mond and the Tu­tus broke out into five pim­ple-in­spired bands, from “Des­mond and the Pim­ple Fac­tory: Live and in your face” to a Mex­i­can mari­achi band, “Des­mond and Los Flam­ing Face: Burst­ing out with even more cheese.”

Point-of-sale posters drive young suf­fer­ers to www.stopz­its.co.za, or Ben­zac’s Face­book page, where they can down­load the Ben­zac Zit Zap­per app on to any mo­bile plat­form. There they can play a Face­book game. There’s also a be­hindthe-scenes photo shoot, where Des­mond and the Squiza Sis­ters can be seen in full drag, shar­ing how tough life has been since they “ex­ploded all over the scene”. Pun­sters be­ware.

More be­hind-the-scenes videos and full-length tracks are be­ing re­leased vi­rally, and on ra­dio call­ers re­ceive large cash prizes for shar­ing their zit hor­ror sto­ries.

Says Gal­derma’s global head of mar­ket­ing, Larry Pot­gi­eter: “This is the best piece of phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal com­mu­ni­ca­tion I have seen. It’s fresh and en­gag­ing, and avoids the clin­i­cal cliché of this kind of ad­ver­tis­ing.”

Dis­chem and Clicks stores like it so much they’ve given Ben­zac free shelf space.

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