How To Become A Word-Of-Mouth Maven



In a recent Marketing Daily post, “Disrupting A Once-Staid Category, Kotex Builds A 'Menstruation Machine,'Sarah Paulsen, senior global creative and design director for Kimberly-Clark's adult and feminine care brands said, "The goal is to demystify periods to help reduce stigma. And we wanted a fun way to show how little people know about the way menstruation works.”

Kotex has been hard at work creating conversations about menstrual health for over a decade. It has helped to dispel a myth I often hear about word-of-mouth marketing: that it works only (or best) in “exciting” categories. Not true. Word of mouth also works for everyday products and brands in categories like children’s products, beverage, and beauty products -- as well as women’s personal care products.

Starting an Unlikely Conversation

In 2010, Kimberly-Clark launched a new tampon brand, U by Kotex, and made a bold decision to change the conversation about this traditionally staid -- and quiet -- category. Advertising and marketing in the category had long been based on breezy images of snow and euphemistic language about “freshness” and “protection.”

Kimberly-Clark executives believed that society’s unwillingness to talk honestly about vaginal health and menstruation was a serious matter, with the potential to lead to bad health decisions and outcomes by teenagers unable to get the information they needed.  So the company decided to change that.

“Right from the start, we believed it was about word of mouth,” Kimberly-Clark’s Jay Gottlieb, vice president of adult and feminine care marketing told me and my co-author when we profiled U by Kotex in “The Face-to-Face Book.” The strategy worked commercially, as well as achieving its goal of starting a conversation that lasted a decade, as Kotex continues to engage young women to make menstrual hygiene a talkable and shareable subject.



Read the full MediaPost article, here.

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