, February 5, 2016

Valentine’s Day: No Romantic Roses – Just Sex Please

Durex have used their Valentine’s campaign to attack the boring clichés linked to this annual event. They’ve created a new commercial which shows a couple mowing down a field of roses and then crashing into each other in a frenzy of excitement.

Durex claim the creative approach comes out of research which found that 49 per cent of Brits do not look forward to Valentine’s Day. Forty per cent said Valentine’s Day is a cliché and 43 per cent said they would like to try something new.

Since its launch in 1929, Durex has dramatically shifted its brand position over the years. Over the last decade it has shifted from promoting safe sex to the “love sex” strapline and wants the brand to connect with the magic of sex. Condoms are now just part of a range of pleasure products including the gels featured in the commercial. The company now has sexperts such as Alix Fox, who says: “Valentine’s Day is supposed to be the most romantic day of the year, but sadly it can easily turn into 24 hours of predictable disappointment.”

“Durex’s research shows that a third of Brits want more spontaneity in their relationship, so we wanted to develop a campaign that would encourage people to substitute the stereotypical, commercialised Valentine’s ideas with a focus on doing something that is personal and meaningful to them.”

PrintWell she may be stretching a point by suggesting it’s personal and meaningful to wreck a couple of ride-on mowers but overall the ongoing creativity demonstrated by the brand has been excellent and heavily based on solid research. Over the last couple of years they’ve:
• Provided a mobile app which shows the x-rated goings-on behind doors linked to their TV commercials using synchronised dual screen film
• Linked with Earth Hour to run a massive Social Media campaign based on “turn off to turn on” – generating a huge amount of online engagement
• Called for condom emojis on the basis that 84% of 18-25 year olds would feel more comfortable “talking” about sex using emojis.

Being British, it’s been very hard to write this Thought without throwing in some cheap innuendo. Sorry about that (hopefully you’ll agree it’s fairly subtle). I’m also an incurable romantic. So while I can’t help being impressed with the well-researched marketing strategy of this long-lasting brand, I’m hoping the target market still buys roses as well as Durex products.

Image credit: Durex

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