Benzac Promo, Case study UNWANTED FRIENDS by Net#work BBDO Johannesburg

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Industry Skin Care
Media Promo & PR, Case study
Market South Africa
Agency Net#work BBDO Johannesburg
Executive Creative Director Rob Mclennan
Art Director Brent Singer
Copywriter Jenny Glover
Released November 2010

Credits & Description

Category: Best Use of Social Media Marketing
Advertiser: GALDERMA
Product/Service: BENZAC
Date of First Appearance: Nov 1 2010
Entrant Company: NET#WORK BBDO, Johannesburg, SOUTH AFRICA
Entry URL:
Executive Creative Director: Rob McLennan (Net#work BBDO)
Creative Director: Jenny Glover (Net#work BBDO)
Creative Director: Brent Singer (Net#work BBDO)
Copywriter: Jenny Glover (Net#work BBDO)
Art Director: Brent Singer (Net#work BBDO)
Art Buyer: Kirsty Zietsman (Net#work BBDO)
Account Director: Karen Carr (Net#work BBDO)
Planner: John Laurence (Net#work BBDO)
Media placement: Online - Online - November 2010

Insights, Strategy & the Idea
The client had a history of very sterile pharmaceutical style advertising and wanted to to do something that would resonate with the teen/tween target market. Something that would hit this disinterested and advertsising resistant market directly and create talkability. They wanted to do all this with less than $1000.
Tweens and teens were familiar with the brand but generally didn’t interact with it or have any relationship with it. Their mom’s were the ones making the purchases. The product was also very sterile and pharmaceutical.
Teens love collecting and collating friends on facebook. With a mere click friends can be added or dropped. To our minds pimples, spots and zits are kind of like friends. The unwanted kind. Facebook allows you to easily reject or ignore these unwanted elements and that’s kind of what Benzac pimple cream does: it allows you to effortlessly get rid of those unwanted ‘friends’ on your face.

Creative Execution
Engage teens on their own territory (facebook) with an advertising message cunningly disguised as entertainment.
On our very limited budget we didn’t want to reinvent the facebook wheel. We wanted to use the existing functionality in a new way. The main channel was simply to create ‘pimple’ profiles and send out friend requests. Requests that were ignored or rejected would be followed up by a simple facebook message landing the idea. A link to a microsite, which gave product tips and advice, was also included in the message.

Results and Effectiveness
10 000 kids got the message. They proactivly wrote on their wall pages and tweeted about the stunt. They even put forward their own friends as friend suggestions for our pimple profiles.
The goal was to create a teen affinity with a pharmaceutical product. We successfully achieved this by sneaking up on our targets and entertaining them on their own turf. The fact that teens were now proactivly tweeting and posting about our product was evidence of a shift in the way the brand was percieved. It was a small but significant step towards creating a new brand personality.