Leveraging TikTok's Branded Hashtag Challenge to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19.
Dettol, a Reckitt Benckiser-owned household cleaning and disinfectants brand with a legacy of over 80 years, is a popular and trusted choice for personal care and household cleaners across 124 countries. With the sudden onset of COVID-19, Dettol felt that it had the responsibility to not only improve production to meet the increased demand in products but also inculcate sound handwashing habits. By promoting the correct handwashing techniques, Dettol could do its part to educate its customers on how to take preventative measures and help curb the spread of the virus.
For a campaign of this caliber to be effective, Dettol needed to reach a large audience that would re-share the message in a short amount of time. Instead of sermonizing the message, Dettol instead turned to TikTok, and its highly engaged community, to help make handwashing the right way "cool" again and set off a ripple effect throughout Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia.
With a clear goal of reaching Southeast Asia’s youth with a singular message, Dettol launched its first global TikTok campaign, a six-day Branded Hashtag Challenge, #HandWashChallenge, designed to reach millions of people and show them the proper way to thoroughly wash their hands. Especially among young audiences, handwashing might be easily taken for granted - and too mundane to be given importance to. But there’s a difference between washing one’s hands, and washing one’s hands "the right way" for the germs to be cleansed away.
With a Hashtag Challenge, Dettol was able to teach proper hand hygiene techniques in an attention-grabbing and engaging way. Customary to Hashtag Challenges, Dettol combined music and a dash of choreography to make it fun to watch and participate in. Users were encouraged to perform a dance routine that mimicked the act of washing one’s hands for the recommended 20 seconds. Once completed, they were then encouraged to share the video with friends using the campaign hashtag while tagging Dettol. Users could even improvise on the proper handwashing technique, making these challenges even more memorable and sharable.
With the creatives and launch strategy in place, Dettol scaled the visibility of its campaign with TopView and In-Feed Ads. This ensured that the #HandWashChallenge reached almost all TikTok users in Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia and encouraged them to participate and share this positive message with their community.
The #HandWashChallenge struck a chord with audiences in Southeast Asia. Launching the campaign shortly after the pandemic struck, combined with a creative spin on an important hygiene message, the challenge re-imagined and made an everyday, overlooked habit of washing hands fun and meaningful again.
The Branded Hashtag Challenge along with both TopView and In-Feed Ads delivered a total of 303 million impressions and reached 42 million users on TikTok. With an exciting and timely message, 44,000 participants created videos that were collectively seen by 153 million people throughout Southeast Asia. But that's not all. The #HandWashChallenge also won the Gold Award for Purposeful Marketing at the 2020 MMA SMARTIES APAC. For a brand with over 80 years of heritage and possessing a strong association with doctors and mothers for preventing illnesses and infections, showing off a more youthful and fun side not only attracted the attention of a younger and highly engaged audience, it also gave Dettol a contemporary and fresh medium to reimagine it's messaging in just a matter of days.