Ad agency: Faith Popcorn’s BrainReserve
Timing can be important in advertising. Allergan’s “Actually She Can” came along as the country contemplated the possible election of its first female president—along with the backlash and resistance to that—as well as an escalation in the struggle for women’s reproductive and economic rights. Ad campaigns like Procter & Gamble’s “Like a Girl” and Dove’s “Real Beauty” had proven powerful and resonant with women in prior years, so the groundwork had been set for similar work in healthcare. Enter Allergan’s “Actually She Can.”
The campaign is for women who are “strong, smart and driven,” and it aims to foster discussions and movements among them. Targeting millennial women, it promotes the female empowerment message across a wide swath of programs, including mentorships, publication partnerships, social media hashtag and emoji campaigns, documentary films, celebrity endorsements and even tank top sales to raise money for a cause.
Allergan, with its portfolio of products aimed at women, has a vested interest in this audience. The company's treatments span its women’s health and urology, eye care, gastroenterology, and dermatology and aesthetics product divisions.
The campaign is impressive not only for its timing and the importance of its message but also for the multiple and varied ways Allergan launched the effort and adapted it along the way. This thing has legs, as they say in the ad business.
Look, we’ll admit it—we love a good heartfelt hooray for women as much as the next feminist, but even more than that girl power positivity, “Actually She Can” wins with us for its zeitgeist bullseye.
Kudos to Allergan for timing, messaging and branding on fleek.