2016 Agency Elite Awards: Word of Mouth/Viral

Winner: Irwin Gail Consumer Communications - Badger & Winters #WomenNotObjects

#WomenNotObjects is a women’s advocacy campaign that sought to shake up the way the advertising industry portrays women. The campaign was the brainchild of ad industry executive Madonna Badger. It was designed to spur conversation around the pervasive objectification of women in advertising. In the '90s, Madonna Badger was the creative director behind the original Calvin Klein underwear ads. At the time, the campaign seemed novel and helped the brand cut through the clutter. In the 25 years since those ads, women have become increasingly objectified throughout American culture. With medical evidence of the harm these ads have on younger children, Badger and her team vowed never to create another campaign that treats women as objects.

Badger & Winters created a compelling video around the topic to raise awareness about how women are portrayed by brands, highlight the harm these images do to young girls and boys and create a call to action for consumers, brands and executives to become part of the conversation by using the hashtag #WomenNotObjects. In just two and a half weeks the agency garnered 40 million in social reach, more than 18,000 social mentions, 380 million media impressions, 3 organic celebrity posts and over 1.45 million video views.

Honorable Mentions:

  • Broadhead + Co & Minnesota Pork Board - Pig + a Pint
  • RF Binder - Changing Public Perception of Algae: A Groundswell Marketing Campaign from the Thrive Brand