248691 Best Bones Forever!: Creating emotional ties through branding

Wednesday, November 2, 2011: 1:42 PM

Elizabeth Osborn , Hager Sharp, Inc., Washington, DC
Darcy Sawatzki, MA , Hager Sharp, Washington, DC
W. Douglas Evans, PhD , Department of Prevention & Community Health, The George Washington University, Washington, DC
R. Ann Abercrombie, MLS , Office on Women's Health, HHS, Washington, DC
INTRODUCTION: Branding is an important strategy for engaging tweens and was successful in CDC's VERB campaign. Best Bones Forever! (BBF!), HHS' Office on Women's Health's (OWH) campaign for girls 9-14, uses branding to 1) position calcium and vitamin D consumption and physical activity as fun, cool, and friendship-based and 2) create emotional ties—including feelings of strength, belonging, and coolness—to the behaviors. METHODS: OWH conducted focus groups and surveys to develop and test creative concepts and create a brand that resonates with girls by positioning building strong bones as consistent with what they value: friendship and fun. The campaign name plays on ‘best friends forever,' messaging encourages getting active with friends, and the campaign's look and feel is edgy. Using these elements, BBF! strives to make bone-health behaviors fun, easy, and popular with a brand identity that is carried through materials, partners, websites, and events. RESULTS: A survey conducted at a 2010 BBF! event measured the strength of the emotional ties girls have with the brand, including perception of quality and loyalty, after interacting with the campaign. Questions included whether BBF! made girls think of their friends and whether they considered it “fun and silly.” The results showed that nearly 100% of girls (n = 64) indicated they had a favorable view of the campaign, would tell friends about it, and wanted to learn more. DISCUSSION: BBF! successfully creates emotional ties through a brand that uses positive emotional appeals to offer benefits (friendship and fun) in exchange for target behaviors.

Learning Areas:
Other professions or practice related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Describe Best Bones Forever! Discuss how branding is used to create emotional ties to behaviors. Identify strategies for engaging a tween audience.

Keywords: Social Marketing, Adolescents

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am qualified to present because I oversee the Best Bones Forever program. During my career I have developed and managed a women's health resource library and data access system to facilitate research; currently maintaining an inventory of health and medical journals as well as federal publications on women's health topics. I also serve as the program manager for the womenshealth.gov and girlshealth.gov web sites of the HHS Office on Women’s Health, Division of Outreach and Collaboration; as well as oversee all social media activities. Education: Master's degree in library service from Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey and a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.