Best Use of Direct Marketing: 2015

Marketing initiatives that individually target consumers, healthcare professionals or any other stakeholder audience, with the objective of inducing a response or specific action.

Free Killer Tan 
Agency: Area 23 
Client: Mollie's Fund 

The nonprofit Mollie's Fund is committed to melanoma awareness, prevention and patient support. Given the link between indoor tanning and melanoma, the organization wanted to inspire behavior change among 18- to 24-year-old Caucasian women—the demographic likeliest to tan and to be at risk for melanoma.

In February, when many young women get their first indoor tan ahead of their spring vacations, street teams in New York offered free indoor tans. 

Once inside a fake tanning salon, would-be tanners attended their own funeral—replete with their photo (taken in the lobby) on an RIP sign, a tanning-bed casket, organ music and mourners. A dermatologist was on hand to discuss tanning dangers and healthy alternatives. 

Reactions were filmed and edited into a prank-style video that was shared on Facebook, YouTube and FreeKiller Microsite visitors could send friends coupons for a “free killer tan” that routed more visitors back to the microsite. Sororities were targeted on Twitter, which inspired demonstrations to ban tanning on campuses.

Judges felt the approach was “very clever,” “highly engaging” and “edgy.”

Results included 120 -million+ media impressions; 2 million video views; and 25,000+ unique website visitors.

“Brilliant use of ‘scare' strategy, 360-degree use of media outlets and dramatic results,” one judge said.

The LAP-BAND -System: “It Fits” Integrated -Campaign 
Agency: W2O Group: tWist Marketing 
Client: Apollo Endosurgery 

In just three months, this campaign drove nearly 60,000 leads and about $13.7 million in sales (24.5% over the goal) for Apollo Endosurgery's LAP-BAND System.

“Great integration … with strong creative, a clear call to action and impressive results,” one judge said.

Other judges gave high marks for research, strategy, creative and engagement.

■ Area 23 and Mollie's Fund for Free Killer Tan
■ MicroMass Communi­­ca­tions and Gilead Scienc­es for SOVALDI CRM Experience
■ Neon and Novartis Pharmaceuticals for PsO Much More/The Patient Listening Project
■ Targetbase and Clarity Consulting and GSK for The Us in Lupus CRM program Speaking of Lupus
■ W2O Group and Apollo Endosurgery for The LAP-BAND System: It Fits Integrated Campaign