VIVA LA VULVA

Bronze eurobest Award
ClientESSITY
Category A01. Fiction & Non-Fiction Films up to 5 minutes
TitleVIVA LA VULVA
Product/ServiceLIBRESSE/BODYFORM
Entrant AMVBBDO London, UNITED KINGDOM
Idea Creation AMVBBDO London, UNITED KINGDOM
Media Placement ZENITH London, UNITED KINGDOM
PR KETCHUM London, UNITED KINGDOM
Production SOMESUCH London, UNITED KINGDOM
Production 2 TRIM EDITING London, UNITED KINGDOM
Production 3 750MPH London, UNITED KINGDOM
Production 4 TIME BASED ARTS London, UNITED KINGDOM
Credits
Name Company Position
Paul Brazier AMVBBDO Chief Creative Officer
Alex Grieve AMVBBDO Executive Creative Director
Adrian Rossi AMVBBDO Executive Creative Director
Toby Allen AMVBBDO Creative Partner
Jim Hilson AMVBBDO Creative Partner
Diego Cardoso de Oliveira AMVBBDO Art Director
Caio Giannella AMVBBDO Writer
Edwina Dennison AMVBBDO Agency Producer
Mario Kerkstra AMVBBDO Designer
Kim Gehrig Somesuch & Co Director
Lee Groombridge Somesuch & Co Producer
Seth Wilson Somesuch & Co Executive Producer
Deepa Keshvala Somesuch & Co DOP Lighting Cameraman
Elise Butt Trim Editing Editor
Sam Ashwell 750mph Sound Engineer
Peter Raeburn Soundtree Music Music

Why is this work relevant for Entertainment?

Our young female audience are sceptical of advertising. Especially in the highly personal intimate care category. So instead of selling to them, we entertained them. While competitors were persisting with super functional product ads, we created a full-length music video – a joyful anthem to the female form, featuring hundreds of vulvas singing loud and proud to the women who love them back. Mixing media /cultural touchpoints, from an iconic 70s track, to illustration, origami, cupcakes, fashion, an animated clitoris and singing cameltoes, it celebrates vulvas and subverts taboos about them the same breath, proving you can entertain with purpose

Background

In 2018, Bodyform/Libresse, better known for period products, expanded beyond periods into caring products. Apart from telling women what to do (“the right soap for your intimate area”), reinforcing fears of smelling bad or treating women’s anatomy like broken cars that needed serious “intimate experts” wearing white coats, the intimate care category hadn’t been up to much in the last few decades. Despite being a new entrant, we wanted to be the much-needed lighthouse and break the cycle of shame. In 2017-2018, our campaign #Bloodnormal had been a ban-defying, taboo-breaking and boundary pushing campaign that had redefined the period care category and had been praised globally for breaking the patriarchal stigma around periods. We wanted to bring the same empathy, the same taboo-breaking spirit and the same brand purpose to intimate care, to show women how much we cared about them – and about their vulvas.

Describe the creative idea

Instead of functional product ads that made women feel bad about their vulvas, we created a piece of entertainment that made women feel good about them. Viva La Vulva is a celebratory anthem to women’s vulvas – if the world was dancing around the issue, we decided to make it sing. It shows a beautiful diversity of vulvas through a mixed media approach, all to show there’s no one perfect vulva. There are billions. And it tackles multiple ingrained taboos around the vulva along the way, fighting shame with pride.

Describe the strategy

All the reports and research we found were consistent: unless women were exposed to the real diversity of vulvas and encouraged to look at their own vulva, they’d carry on feeling anxiety and dissatisfaction with their own. And “even in young women with a relatively positive genital self-image, exposure to pictures of a large variety of natural vulvas positively affects genital self-image”. (Journal of Psychosomatic Obstetrics and Gynaecology 2016). Just like Bloodnormal challenged taboos around representing periods, we’d confront taboos around representing vulvas in order to overturn a long history of shame and objectification. And we’d celebrate vulvas in all their diversity to help women be at peace with their own bodies.

Describe the execution

Viva La Vulva is a love song to a part of us that doesn’t get enough love. Set to the iconic track ‘Take Yo’ Praise’ by Camille Yarbrough, it’s a lip-sync music video with a twist, featuring hundreds of vulvas of every shape and colour, all singing loud and proud to the equally diverse women who love them back. The film subverts multiple taboos around the vulva on the way: celebrating conch shells, messy oysters, juicy fruits, embracing the much-shamed camel-toe, and even Barbie makes a cameo, outraged she doesn’t have a vulva. The film ends on behind the scene interviews of the cast, opening up about the issue, the shame, the ignorance and reclaiming their bodies.

Describe the outcome

Released in Scandinavia and the UK, the campaign immediately received praise around the world, from the US to India. With £0 media support, the brand video has garnered over 5 million organic views in under 2 weeks. And despite being novel and ground-breaking in subject and approach, 96% of all social comments on the campaign have been positive. The brand video has smashed all benchmarks in brand engagement and interest, with over half of women reporting that the video sets the brand apart in the intimate care category – over double the norm (Ipsos Dec. 2018). Sales reflect the impact: from 0% to 33% market share in the Nordics in under 2 months