Why Tommee Tippee decided to highlight the problems with breastfeeding
Manifest Group won the 'Best creative content idea using video', 'Most innovative use of content' and the 'Grand Prix' categories at The Drum Awards for Content 2021 and the 'Branded content' category at The Drum Awards for Marketing 2021 with its ‘The Boob Life’ campaign for Tommee Tippee. Here, the team behind the winning entry reveal the secrets of this successful project…
The Boob Life is an unapologetically raw, honest and celebratory global campaign that challenges the unrealistic expectations placed on parents through the lens of infant feeding, standing up for mums in the way they need to be stood up for.
Our objectives were to globally launch two new breastfeeding product innovations, Made for Me Breast Pads and Double Electric Pump. In addition, we were briefed to:
Make Tommee Tippee the first choice for first time expectant mums in their second trimester of pregnancy;
Increase brand awareness of Tommee Tippee through emotionally relevant campaign content;
Increase consideration, conversion and advocacy through storytelling content and build brand love.
In a category that has always put baby’s needs over mum’s, we shaped our strategy around her, with the sole focus on having a positive impact on mum’s life.
The campaign was driven out of in-depth qualitative and quantitative research with over 750 new first-time mums across the world. We listened to them and found out that 9 in 10 feel breastfeeding is under-acknowledged in the media and society, and needs to be spoken about more openly and honestly.
Findings showed the impact of breastfeeding being stigmatised societally in this way leaves women to feel judged, pressured and unsupported when it comes to breastfeeding. Over half said their mental health had been negatively impacted.
From there, it was a no-brainer: we needed to change the status quo by opening up honest conversations about feeding and encouraging others to join them; demystify breastfeeding realities by being real in the process, empower women to feel confident to feed their way by showcasing a diverse spectrum of feeding experiences.
But we also needed a creative platform that spoke to mums in their language. Where other brands talk clinically, preaching about breasts and breastfeeding, we wanted something that connected with how mums saw and spoke about themselves in a very real way. The Boob Life, a battle-cry for women everywhere, was born.
Our content strategy was shaped around showing mums what they needed to see: the real scenes and stories of feeding that they had been deprived of. We went against the grain to deliver realism at every touchpoint, from casting real mums to informing topics and conversations of the Spill the Milk content series. We also wanted our audience to continue our work for us so encouraged them to join in conversations and share their own experiences with the #thebooblife hashtag.
However, our study and wide research showing that the sexualisation of breastfeeding meant it was heavily censored by the TV and social media platforms, we knew that our challenge was not simply having the conversations, but communicating them. We needed a strategy that would allow us to tackle breastfeeding policies head-on.
Through the creative execution, we wanted to celebrate the emotive, life-changing power that’s given to women when they are able to feel confident in feeding in their own way - showcasing for a diverse spectrum of feeding experiences. It’s an unapologetically raw, honest and celebratory film that strips away unrealistic expectations of feeding by showing audiences what it’s really like: the pain, the glory and everything in between.
The hero brand film, also titled The Boob Life brought The Boob Life movement to the world. It’s an unapologetically raw, honest and celebratory film that strips away unrealistic expectations of feeding by showing audiences what it’s really like: the pain, the glory and everything in between.
It stars nine real mums as they feed by breast, pump and bottle, unapologetically capturing rare scenes of lactating, swelling and sore boobs of all shapes and sizes, a far cry from the sanitised so-called perfection that is the standard for parenting brands. Our proud and confident mums represent the diversity of boobs, post-partum bodies and feeding choices and include a mum with a double mastectomy, a disabled mum and parents combination-feeding newborn twins - scenes we knew our audience had been deprived of in the media.
Art directed scenes of boob metaphors allowed us to incorporate a wider array of research-informed boob moments into the film, alongside brand-led animations by illustrator Noma Barr that added colour, variety and fun energy to the film.
Accompanying this, the six-part digital content series Spill the Milk is an honest and emotive six-part digital content series that further unpacks the feeding experiences showcased in The Boob Life hero film. Loud, proud and supportive, The Boob Life stands as a battle cry to mums across the world, preparing them for the realities of feeding while empowering them to feed their way.
The brand hero film, which was banned by advertising bodies and Facebook, for ‘nudity’ and ‘showing breastfeeding,’ was created from one central idea and rolled out channel agnostically. Amplification spanned PR, Social Media (Paid and Organic), Influencer, Pre-Rolls, Digital Display, Email, PPC and strategic media Partnerships, and further storytelling was hosted on a dedicated campaign landing page.
Just days after launch, The Boob Life film saw a huge surge of coverage across the globe – over 150 message-rich feature pieces with the likes of Marie Claire, Grazia, Glamour, Mail Online, Mirror Online, Mamamia, The New York Times and Mother & Baby, as well as a long segment on ITV London.
Further to driving the consumer media and infant category conversations, the campaign content landed multiple ‘campaign of the day/week hits’ in marketing titles, gaining cut-through with AdWeek, Campaign, The Drum, AdAge, PR Week and Contagious. In the UK, social media engagement rose for the brand by over 400%, and celebrities including Laura Whitmore, Frankie Bridge and Rosie Ramsey have all shared the campaign voicing their support of The Boob Life.
Moreover, we have started a public conversation around the controversial policies of advertising bodies in the three lead markets. The USA, UK and Australia all cited the film as ‘indecent due to adult content and excess nudity’ - a worrying indicator of how society comments on infant feeding, mums and parenting choices. Facebook is currently talking to Tommee Tippee about wavering the ban, looking to achieve a momentous breakthrough for our industry, the creation and deployment of meaningful content, and importantly, mums across the globe.
Manifest’s #TheBoobLife for Tommee Tippee disrupted how the parenting category speaks to women, broke down deeply entrenched stigmas surrounding infant feeding, and lobbied Facebook to remove its ban on showing breastfeeding - all through one unified global campaign.
This project was a winner at The Drum Awards for Content 2021 and The Drum Awards for Marketing 2021. To find out which of The Drum Awards are currently open for entry, click here.
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