Cannes Lions

See My Skin

EDELMAN, New York / VASELINE / 2023

Awards:

1 Gold Cannes Lions
1 Silver Cannes Lions
1 Bronze Cannes Lions
1 Shortlisted Cannes Lions
Presentation Image
Supporting Images
Case Film
Supporting Images
Supporting Images
Supporting Images
Presentation Image
Supporting Images
Image
All (Supporting)
1 of 0 items

Overview

Entries

Credits

Overview

Background

Systemic racism and deep-rooted healthcare inequities in the U.S. lead to misdiagnosis and untreated conditions. This can be attributed to the lack of imagery available of conditions on Black and Brown skin.

Research published by the Journal of the American Academy of Dermatology found that less than 6% of image-based search results show skin conditions on people of color. And when Black and Hispanic people don’t feel seen in search, they’re less likely to be seen by a dermatologist – leading to 25% higher mortality rates for life-threatening conditions like skin cancer.

As the brand that exists to give everybody healthy skin, Vaseline® needed to double down on its purpose. We committed to raising awareness of the racially biased systems that impact algorithmic search, providing proper representation and access to equal care, and most of all, helping these communities be seen.

Idea

See My Skin is the only database designed to search conditions on skin of color.

We aggregated thousands of images of hundreds of conditions on Black and Brown skin, building the world’s most diverse medical image library. Each image was independently evaluated for accuracy and relevance by a board of certified dermatologists.

Alongside VisualDx, software that enhances diagnostic accuracy in skin of color, we enabled people of color to see only themselves in search – for the first time ever.

With HUED, a platform that connects patients with culturally competent providers, we referred them to dermatologists who understand their skin.

Then, we galvanized our community to build the database by uploading an image of their skin conditions. Together, we broke down barriers to equitable care and did what search engines and the industry have failed to do: address the long-standing bias and exclusion of people of color in skin care.

Strategy

Vaseline® wanted to engage and serve its primary audience, Black and Hispanic people ages 25-44.

To better understand this target’s pain points on their quest for skin treatment, we set out on a discovery journey leveraging social listening and search analytics to map out their entire journey from condition exploration to diagnosis.

Through our research, we audited over 100 of our target’s most searched conditions on Google, as well as the percentage of results that were culturally relevant.

We also discovered that our audience was looking to other sources (like personal acquaintances, discussion forums and beauty influencers) for advice and informal diagnosis to compensate for the limited resources in mainstream channels.

This information defined the needs our platform had to meet.

The strategic objective of See My Skin was to take the guess work out of our audience’s discovery by providing unbiased, culturally competent resources along the path to diagnosis.

Description

Background & Context:

A 150-year-old skincare brand losing relevance to a core consumer audience.

Launched in 1872, Vaseline is a brand of petroleum jelly-based skincare products. Its mission is to give access to healthy skin to everyone, everywhere.

Ubiquitous in hospitals and homes across America, Vaseline has been a skincare staple in the Black community for generations. But after decades of loyalty, Vaseline was losing relevance and sales with Black women. Challenger brands like Cerave [3] and Cetaphil were investing aggressively in social and influencer marketing, which effectively broke through with a younger, diverse audience – the same audience Vaseline needed to win back. This was compounded by an emerging trend of dermatologist-founded skincare brands that were establishing cult-like followers [4].

Creative Challenge:

Find a way to reconnect with Black women.

Skin care is a universal need. But the care that skin of color needs, and the issues associated with it, are unique and personal.

Vaseline wanted to find a way to get Black women to re-evaluate the role the brand plays in their lives and their community.

Solution:

Tackle a life-and-death skin care issue that disproportionately affects Black Americans.

America is a multiracial society, but in matters of health it’s also a deeply unequal one. People of color make up 40% of the U.S. population, but when it comes to searching online for diagnosis and treatment, less than 6% of image-based search results show conditions on any skin other than white (Source: American Academy of Dermatology). This is shocking.

In consequence, too many Black Americans suffer from misdiagnosis and untreated conditions. They also have a 25% higher mortality rate for skin cancer. It’s literally a matter of life and death – but no one was doing anything about it.

The solution was for Vaseline to be the brand to make a difference.

Execution:

See My Skin, the world’s most diverse medical image library.

Vaseline aggregated thousands of images of skin conditions on Black and Brown skin to create the only database designed to search conditions on skin of color. Each image was independently evaluated for accuracy and relevance by a board of certified dermatologists.

Alongside VisualDx, software that enhances diagnostic accuracy in skin of color, Vaseline enabled Black women to finally see themselves in search – for the first time ever. With HUED, a platform that connects patients with culturally competent providers, we referred them to dermatologists who understand the unique needs of darker skin.

See My Skin is more than a cultural statement. It’s more than a user experience improvement. It’s a built-to-last lifeline for sidelined and marginalized people struggling to identify potentially life-threatening conditions. More than anything, it points the way to a more just and equal America, where access to diagnosis and treatment is no longer held back by the color of your skin.

[3] https://www.businessoffashion.com/articles/beauty/cerave-clean-skin-care-drug-store-cleanswer-tiktok-skincare-by-hyram-gen-z/

[4] https://www.glossy.co/beauty/glossy-x-launchmetrics-research-the-buzziest-doctor-founded-skin-care-brands/

Execution

In joining forces with VisualDx and HUED, Vaseline® developed an unparalleled search experience for people of color.

Cataloguing the world’s most diverse medical image library was a true expert collaboration between a robust network of dermatologists, medical librarians, software engineers and imaging specialists.

We aggregated thousands of images of hundreds of conditions on Black and Brown skin, each one independently evaluated for accuracy and relevance by a board of certified dermatologists.

From inception to development, it took nearly three years to create.

Now, See My Skin lives online as the only database designed to search conditions on skin of color and connect users directly to dermatologists for treatment.

Through paid search and social, it continues to reach and serve Black and Brown communities nationwide.

As part of a continued effort for greater representation, we built an upload tool allowing visitors to add an image of their diagnosed skin condition in real-time, to be vetted and added to the growing database.

In this way the database continues to grow, becoming smarter with every additional data point.

Outcome

The See My Skin campaign exceeded all objectives, in marketing goals with quality media coverage, earned impressions and awareness.

Earned Impressions: 981M Impressions across editorial and social (151% over benchmark)

449 Earned Media Placements, including outlets dedicated to serving Black and Hispanic audiences

Social Sentiment: 99% Positive (Benchmark: 75%)

30,000 new user site visits as of Dec 2022. (Benchmark: 10,000)

59% of site traffic from users seeking to learn more about their specific skin care related concern.

48% of site visitors took action by scheduling an appointment, representing an increase of 1,430% in people seeking dermatological care.

Awareness and visibility increased from 21% to 27%

Brand consideration increased from 33% to 40%

Product recommendation increased from 40% to 45%

Dollar share of Vaseline in the category went from $60.27 (EOY 2021) to $65.02 (YTD 2023)

Included as one of Fast Company’s 2023 World Changing Ideas

Similar Campaigns

11 items

Shortlisted Cannes Lions
Sun Warn!ngs

OGILVY, Singapore

Sun Warn!ngs

2023, VASELINE

(opens in a new tab)