Cannes Lions

CHANGING THE FACE OF THE BRITISH ARMY

MEDIACOM, London / BRITISH ARMY / 2015

Awards:

1 Shortlisted Cannes Lions
Presentation Image
Case Film
Supporting Images

Overview

Entries

Credits

Overview

Description

All the stereotypes of soldiers in popular culture are male. Search for ‘soldier’ on google images and the first page of results are all male. Women in the Army are virtually invisible – and on the few occasions they do appear in the press, they are are often sexualised: features in the British Press have included a ‘Saucy Service Special’ and nicknamed female soldiers ‘Captain Crumpet’, ‘Sexy Sherry’ and ‘Combat Barbie’. (see Cultural & Social climate section below for more context).

This puts women off serving in the British Army, as they can’t relate being a soldier to ‘real’ women like them. As a result, less than 9% of soldiers in the UK are Female.

To make army careers relevant to British women, we knew we had to challenge the stereotype of what a soldier is in the very media environments that had perpetuated them.

We wanted to create a representation of female soldiers that showed the reality. Women of every type serve in the British Army, in virtually every role.

Execution

54 pieces of print & video content ran across the physical and digital platforms of Marie Claire, Look and Now, reaching nearly 2 million women over several months.

This content documented the experiences of the intrepid journalists exploring different Army careers, showing what it is really like doing those roles day to day. They documented their experiences on video, in photos and in words, with the content making for inspiring reading and viewing.

The partnership finished with case studies of real-life inspirational women in the Army, showing how they are achieving great things across a range of Army career paths.

Outcome

Since the campaign started, applications from women have gone up by 45%.

23% of applicants are now female.

With a little help from the source of these stereotypes, we’ve changed the face of the British Army.

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