The Bell Flower Clinic is a sexual health and wellness clinic supported by the Marion County Public Health Department in Indianapolis, Indiana. In 2022, the Clinic set out to increase use of PrEP, a method of HIV prevention that is over 99% effective but only taken by 20% of those who would benefit from it. Taking care to not promote a specific pharmaceutical brand, we promoted PrEP use as a general prophylactic solution that was to the benefit of community health and highlighted how the clinic was a low- to no-cost option to gain access.
Our objective was to create a sex-positive campaign that would generate traffic to the Bell Flower Clinic website and ultimately lead to an increase in PrEP consultations.
Our insights showed that most PrEP advertising, particularly in the Midwest, wasn't sex-positive. They also danced around the point that taking PrEP allows you to continue enjoying a sexually active lifestyle while being thoroughly protected from HIV. Our insights also showed some lower-income communities, people of color and certain gender identities didn't feel represented in most PrEP advertising they had seen prior.
This campaign used bold language and bawdy visuals to capture attention and encourage our audience to find low or no-cost resources for PrEP from the Bell Flower Clinic. By avoiding a visual representation of specific persons, the campaign resonated strongly with a wide audience. The campaign theme allowed us to celebrate sex-positivity in a way that could be scaled from audience-specific placements, such as Grindr to high-exposure placements, such as bus wraps.
To further capture attention and meet our target audience where they are, we created custom branded promotional items including 10,000 lube packets, 10,000 "Nut Buster" candy bars and 5,000 custom pill organizers. These pill organizers had a branded wrapper where recipients could scan for more information and included playful stickers that could be put on the pill organizer to represent the days of the week in a fun and sex-positive way, including "Moanday", "Thirstday" and "Splatterday". These items were distributed at local establishments within targeted zip codes and at LGBTQ+ community events. Over 5,000 coasters were also distributed to local LGBTQ+ establishments that we dubbed "Flirtsters". One side could be used to flirt while the other could be scanned to get you protected.
The creative generated a lot of chatter in the Public Health sector in the Midwest, but more importantly drove results. The campaign as a whole drove over 50,000 site visits in Indianapolis in just two months and doubled PrEP consultations at the Clinic year-over-year.
The campaign was featured in the "Promising Practices" section of the CDC website and was presented as an exemplary creative approach at STD Engage, a national conference for sexual health and wellness practitioners and public health departments.