Can humour help in issues management?

Sometimes, yes! When L’Oreal, the world’s largest beauty company asked Sefiani to help to raise awareness about the problem of parallel imports into Australia, we decided a humorous approach was best to address a serious issue: where products are sold more cheaply by non-authorised distributors and retailers but the quality, efficacy and authenticity of those products is not guaranteed.

Our response was to develop the #DontRiskIt campaign encouraging consumers to choose trust over price.

L’Oreal wanted to alert Australians to the issue of parallel imported products and risks from using them, while also showing support for the 3,000 Australian hair salons who rely on sales of L’Oreal salon-only hair care products.

We used humour to engage with our target audience (mostly women) to start conversations about the issue and give salon owners the tools needed to have discussions with their clients. We briefed and received endorsement from the Master Hairdressers Association then engaged high profile social influencer and comedienne, Tanya Hennessy to create a series of video vignettes to bring the issue to light and educate consumers in a relatable and humorous way. The serious message embedded in the humour was: #DontRiskIt buy authentic products from authorised salons and retailers.

Sefiani also developed factual materials about parallel imports for L’Oreal’s website with links on Tanya’s social posts. Briefing materials and #DontRiskIt decals were sent to 3,000 hair salons supplied by L’Oreal.

Within only three weeks of going live, the video content achieved exceptionl organic reach and engagement with Tanya Hennessey’s facebook video vignettes The A – Z of Salon Clients receiving over 1.3 million views. In addition, there were 58,000 YouTube views, 23,700 Instagram views and 21,600 Facebook actions, rising week by week.

Hair salons across the country are now displaying #DontRiskIt decals and collateral in their salons to prompt conversations with clients and anecdotal feedback from salon owners impacted by parallel imports has been overwhelmingly positive.

The campaign devised by Sefiani is now considered by L’Oreal to be a best practice response to the global issue of parallel imports. And it all hinged on humour.

To view Sefiani’s September Insights Newsletter click here