Sun Smart Campaign

Cancer Council Victoria

Statistics had shown that only 28% of 13-34 year olds in Victoria are regular users of sunscreen, 25% wore a hat and 26% wore long sleeved UV-protection clothing. However, in contrast, 50% used sunglasses and 51% used shade for sun protection.



The Challenge

Motivate behaviour change and actively engage the 16-24year old Victorian target audience to increase sun protection behaviour, particularly sunscreen.

Our Observations

This target audience has fragmented media habits with less reliance on intrusive media channels such as TV, and more reliance on, and usage of online avenues. Generating engagement through online channels can be challenging for social marketing campaigns such as sun protection, which historically have needed to intrude and disrupt. A potential method of achieving online engagements are competitions, but few can generate the levels of engagement needed for population level behaviour change.

Our Strategy

To create a media partnership that engaged the core audience on sunscreen use via a ‘pull’ style campaign. This was to be supported by broader ‘push’ communications. The partnership needed to achieve population scale and effectively demonstrate behaviour change.

Student Edge is an online membership portal for secondary and tertiary students with a reach of more than 120,000 Victorians aged 16-24 years. Their content is mostly offers, discounts and competitions which achieve high levels of audience engagement.

We created a two stage competition in order to achieve effective levels of interaction and an amplified reach via social sharing:

Stage 1: Students were required to submit photos of positive sunscreen use to win a $2,500 Westfield voucher.
Stage 2: The entire Victorian Student Edge community was asked via eDM, Facebook & display formats to vote for the winner. This enabled the campaign to generate scale & further communicate the key campaign messages about sunscreen use.

The Results

The Sun Smart campaign generated over 40,000 votes, 5,500 shares and 1,500 comments and was ranked in the top 10 for overall traffic of more than 250 Student Edge competitions. More importantly, those that recalled the campaign were more likely to take sunscreen with them to outdoor events (44% up from 22%).