Aspercreme is a topical pain relief brand that’s iconic among Boomers, but has long failed to make inroads with younger generations. In 2021, though, an unexpected trend emerged on TikTok: Young women started touting Aspercreme Dry Spray as a solution for high heel pain.
We saw our opening and pounced. Building on this message, we partnered with the ultimate expert on high heel pain: Drag Queen, Nicky Doll. Adored by Gen Z for starring in RuPaul’s Drag Race, we crowned Nicky our first ever AsperQueen. Our goal was to persuade a younger audience to try Aspercreme while also giving this legacy brand a more modern image.
In addition to our goals for the Aspercreme brand, we are a female and LGBTQ owned business. We always seek ways to bring diversity to our projects. We were excited to bring such a fresh and unexpected voice to the topical pain category.
We brought the glitz and glam to YouTube, Facebook, and Instagram in a series of videos starring our AsperQueen, Nicky Doll. Nicky strutted her stuff and let the world know that she keeps her queenly cool by slaying high heel pain with Aspercreme.
In each of our spots, we leaned into the vernacular and iconography of drag culture to inform our creative decisions. Our dialogue, location selection, music, sound effects, wardrobe, hair/make-up, and even color-grading choices were all carefully made with the intent of creating authentically campy content that’s as entertaining as it is informative.
And because we were spreading the word about an entirely new use for Aspercreme, we created something we called “the ritual”—an energetic, quick cut product demo sequence that shows people exactly how to apply Aspercreme to their feet to numb away high heel pain.
The campaign was a resounding success! Of course, like many disruptive ideas, it faced its fair share of challenges along the way. First, we had a low production budget, yet we knew we wanted to capture the glamorous world of Drag Queens. Secondly, we had to make a strong case to our clients that the time was right to go after a younger consumer. Fortunately, they embraced our idea and were excited to look beyond their typical middle-aged target audience to break through with Gen Z.
Our AsperQueen campaign did just that.
After our campaign launched, rave reviews came pouring in from every corner of the internet. Fans, press, and even other RuPaul’s famous drag queens showed love for our work.
The campaign also garnered 30 million impressions, 2x the expected engagement rate, 3x the expected click-through rate, and increased af Aspercreme Dry Spray sales on Amazon by 70!
What’s more, it’s the first effort in the brand’s history that successfully brought in a younger audience.
The effort is now lauded at Sanofi for tapping into culture at the speed of light and for embracing diversity on behalf of its brands.