City Press, Daily Sun increase engagement with ad campaign about menstruation

By Gayle Edmunds

Media24/City Press and Daily Sun/Lil-lets

Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa


Traditionally, menstruation campaigns have run in women’s interest magazines or targeted audiences that menstruate — not the general public. With the launch of its Lil-Lets Talk platform, leading tampon brand Lil-Lets in South Africa wanted to start breaking the taboos and busting the myths around menstruation.

To do this, the company needed to go beyond simply creating a platform for debate, discussion, and information for the same audiences — it needed to market that platform to a broader audience.

This is where City Press and Daily Sun, two leading general interest news brands in South Africa, came in. The former is a flagship Sunday print edition with a digital-first approach; the latter is a daily paper aimed at the mass market.

The two brands traditionally have more male than female readers. The concept behind the crafting of the awareness campaign was to drive debate among readers who don’t menstruate but who have relationships with those who do — and do it without excluding those who menstruate.

Opening the conversation

The campaign — which ran over two months — included a microsite where visitors could read interviews with various experts, among them prominent South African doctors and psychologists who told their stories and offered their expertise.

The microsite also included an explanation of the Lil-Lets Talk platform and encourage people to visit the site no matter whether they menstruate or not. It also included information on Lil-Lets product range and an explanation of how to decide which one is the correct one to use.

The launch of the campaign took place in the flagship Sunday print edition and included an interview with the campaign’s brand ambassador, a prominent local radio DJ and businesswoman, and a QR code that took readers to the microsite. A competition element was included, too, and was exclusive to the print edition.

Also included on the microsite was a video of the discussion between the DJ, her mother, and her daughter around menstruation issues — ranging from the onset of puberty, through period pains, menstrual flows, fertility, and menopause. Refreshingly frank, the video and the interviews reflected the tone of the campaign: Menstruation is a natural process, without which none of us would be here. It cast the harsh light of truth on myths and prejudices, while also providing a safe and open space for any and all questions.

The Lil-Lets campaign opened up the conversation on menstruation for a wider audience and earned incredible response.
The Lil-Lets campaign opened up the conversation on menstruation for a wider audience and earned incredible response.

Powerful results

The campaign was amplified across the two news brands through social media and a navigation bar on the Daily Sun Web site. Readers of both brands not only engaged with the content, but they also did so in unexpectedly large numbers. According to Google Ads Industry Benchmarks, the average click-through rate for health and medicine industries in June 2021 for display advertising was around 0.5%, while this campaign had a click-through rate of 1.31%.

Similarly, the time spent on the site and the stories was an average of eight minutes 17 seconds, showing a high level of engagement. The four Facebook posts run across the two titles engaged 82,944 people and elicited 148 comments for the launch article.

Overall the campaign was a great success, hitting the most important key performance area — getting the conversations around menstruation into the broader population and busting myths that damage the well-being of those who menstruate. It also fulfilled the purpose of building awareness around the Lil-Lets Talk portal.

To ensure this was done to the best effect, we used both our digital and print capabilities to drive the objectives of this campaign in an integrated way that served the needs of our client and our readers across formats.

About Gayle Edmunds

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