Handling the PR for a client that has an interest in getting more women into engineering, I was captivated by GoldieBlox’s Princess Machine video, which tells us that girls deserve more choices than dolls and princess toys. OK, GoldieBlox is all about selling more toys, but the video has a serious message that we learn our attitudes and beliefs about our capabilities from our cradle. I liked this video so much, I decided to see how other brands are getting their ‘females can’ messages across through the power of video sharing.
Shot by the award-winning documentary filmmaker Lauren Greenfield, Like A Girl has taken the internet by storm, even receiving a spot amongst the notoriously exclusive commercials during 2015’s Super Bowl. Always, a manufacturer of feminine-care products, devised this ingenious campaign to encourage women and girls to reclaim the phrase “like a girl” – which is often used as a derogatory remark against women. After a series of captivating videos which have received millions of views worldwide, the #likeagirl hashtag is flooded with activity every day from women posting about their own achievements and empowering experiences.
In an age where obesity is on the rise and sedentary lifestyles are commonplace, Sport England have created this brilliant campaign to encourage ordinary women to exercise more. The campaign was inspired by research indicating that in England in the 14-40 age range, two million less women were participating in sport than men. The message of the campaign is that you don’t need to become the next Serena Williams or Ronda Rousey in order to participate in physical exercise. Sports are available to women in all shapes and sizes, whether naturally athletic or not!
Verizon created an extremely powerful video advert which tackles the issue of young girls not being encouraged to involve themselves in maths and science. The video depicts a young girl being overprotected by her parents because of her gender, which ultimately culminates in her not applying for the school science fair despite the fact she has a natural interest in science. Accompanied by the startling statistic that only 18% of college engineering majors are female, the video ends with the powerful line: “Isn’t it time we told her that she’s pretty brilliant too?”. This advert definitely makes you stop and consider the ramifications of gender stereotyping in the context of education.
Aiming to address gender inequalities in the developing world, Plan International has released a series of informative, somber-toned videos. In the most highly viewed video of the campaign, a story is told of a young girl from an impoverished village in Malawi who dreams of completing her education, having a meaningful career and marrying someone she loves. The video then takes on a darker tone, showing that she may never achieve these dreams, specifically because of her gender. The harsh realities of her situation involve getting married at 13 and having babies before she is ready to, never completing her education or escaping a life of poverty. Few campaigns are as emotive and compelling as this in regards to drawing attention to the lack of proper education for many girls in the developing world.
Now for something a little more humorous. As with the This Girl Can campaign, Nike Women are aiming to encourage women to participate in physical exercise. In what is arguably the best video in the campaign, Nike Women covers the issue of self-consciousness when working out in public. By portraying a number of women exercising with their inner monologues being broadcasted loud and clear, it makes it obvious that most people feel insecure when working out, but the rewards are more than worth the effort in the end. An excellent narrative, compelling visuals and some expertly timed humour for good measure – storytelling at its finest!