Iconic Ads: Whisper – Touch the Pickle

Whisper’s brand purpose is to advocate for & empower women to reach their fullest. This campaign was to rise against menstruation related taboos.

Menstruation was spoken about in hushed tones in 2014. Procter & Gamble’s sanitary napkin brand Whisper surveyed men and women in 10 cities. Before which they had conducted a pilot study with key opinion leaders, anthropologists and social psychologists to understand the reason behind menstruation-related taboos.

The results of the survey were shocking, especially among the women, ages between 13 to 49, in major Indian cities. A shocking 50% of urban Indian women still went by age-old beliefs like 65% washed their hair after the fourth day of menses, 54% did not water plants during periods & 59% did not touch pickle jars.

There were also regional taboos, for example, in the West, women did not share a room with their husband or touch a masala box. A whopping 80% of women & men in the east wrapped the sanitary napkins in a newspaper while purchasing them. Men felt more embarrassed buying a sanitary napkin over condoms.

Coincidentally, Whisper’s brand purpose is to advocate for and empower women to reach their fullest potential. The brief reached BBDO headed by Josy Paul. It was a revelation for Josy when he chatted up with his teammates. The lady team members were asked to narrate experiences & tales related to ‘period’ taboos. It surprised him, even though he had grown up with sisters, that taboos were still prevalent even in educated people.

BBDO felt that ‘Touch the pickle’ would be a great way to brand the campaign. A metaphor- attention-seeking and intriguing.

It was an integrated campaign targeted at the evolved women. Influencers like RJs, film stars, medical professionals, experts were used in this campaign.

The films were directed by Shimit Amin (Chak De) and the creative team led by Rajdeepak Das were Vivek Unnikrishnan & Malvika Srivastava

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