2021 Winner

PinkCherry.ca

Invest In Yourself

The Local Collective

BronzeBranding Within Boundaries

Attitudes towards sex toys are changing but PinkCherry wanted to further the conversation in a new way. Research shows that, for mature adults, sex toys are seen as a way to spice up a sex life and spark feelings of fun, pleasure, passion, and a sense of adventure, and society’s taboos around these devices are diminishing.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, sex toy sales and use have skyrocketed during the COVID-19 pandemic, with people having to spend much more time at home in lockdown by themselves or with their partner. Usage of sex toys is reported to have increased 10% to 26%, and sales results from leading sex toy retailers are up as much as 600% for some. 20% of Americans say their views on using sex toys have become more?positive while in quarantine.

Currently a $15B industry and forecasted to grow at a CAGR of 6% globally from 2020-2024, there is growing awareness and acceptance of sex toys as well as increased distribution, including by retail giant Amazon. Sex toys are becoming an accepted part of a healthy sex life.

Advertising for sex toys, however, tends to be formulaic. Marketing uses one of two archetypes – the hopeless romantic or the naughty temptress. These extremes don’t reflect the range of attitudes towards sex toys. There are also the conservative regulations put on the category with regards to messaging.To break through, they needed to use mass channels, but needed to find a way to be able to advertise effectively within the constraints of those channels. Plus, sex toys are fun, yet the advertising for them isn’t!

WowTech Group had experienced online sales growth of over 200% during the pandemic for their two flagship brands, the Womanizer and We-Vibe. PinkCherry, the largest sex toy retailer in North America, wanted to leverage their partnership with WowTech and use this unique moment in history to both continue normalization of these two brands and to break out of the advertising formula to change attitudes.

Sex toys aren’t just for fun and pleasure; there are physical and mental benefits of using them, too. Use of sex toys has been shown to decrease stress, release endorphins, stimulate dopamine production, relieve pain, help with sleep issues, aid in building confidence and self-esteem, help with sexual disfunction, create better relationship and sexual satisfaction, and may even add to better cognition in aging adults. Who knew that something that can be so fun can be good for you too! Sex toys are like an investment in overall wellness. Something that, during the stress and strain of COVID, is a great benefit.

With so much going for sex toys, the agency wanted people to celebrate these near-miracle products. Targeting primarily educated and professional men and women 35+ who feel confident with their sexuality, they decided to play off a well-known financial concept to get people to think about doing what sets them up for “success.”

As the campaign was launching during tax time, the investment market was top-of-mind inundating people with information on RRSP’s/401k’s and wealth portfolios. PinkCherry wanted to be a source of “relief” and remind people that there are more ways to “invest” in yourself than just financial contribution.

The “Invest In Yourself” campaign turned common RRSP/401k language into sexual innuendos. The agency’s creative campaign took well-known terms in investment advertising and used them to express the benefits of investing in yourself sexually. Terms such as “investment tools,” “increase your liquidity,” and “adjustable bonds” make people think of finances at first, but once the PinkCherry name is revealed with the Womanizer Liberty clitoral stimulator or the Chorus couples vibrator, the real message comes shining through.

They used radio, print, and out of home advertising to give men and women the permission, power, and curiosity to explore all that PinkCherry has to offer with its partnership with WowTech products.

The creative approach resulted in a campaign that could run in mass channels nationally in both the US and Canada. The radio ads ran across the Sirus XM radio network, on highly conservative news programs as well as the provocative Howard Stern Show. The campaign was also accepted by prominent OOH companies, running on highly visible billboards across Canada’s busiest highways and throughout the USA.

The campaign resonated with consumers, and the brand experienced a record setting sales period during the length of the campaign. This sales lift from this campaign beat the already unprecedentedly high sales resulting from the boost of pandemic purchasing.

Credits
President & Chief Creative Director: Matt Litzinger
Managing Director: Kaitlin Doherty
Solutions & Operations Director: Lauren Brown
Integrated Strategy Director: Michael Ash
Art Director: Grant Cleland
Writer: Sean Atkinson
Brand Director: Amanda McMillan
Audio Production: Pirate Studios


Have questions? Need help?
Contact Rowan Traynor at 1-416-408-2300 x213 or rtraynor@brunico.com.