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How has Movember stayed relevant to this day?

William Chapman

November 29, 2019

The fundraising juggernaut, Movember, was born in 2003 and against the odds, has managed to weather the storm of charity fatigue and the rise of competitor months such as ‘Stoptober’ and ‘Dry January’. It lives beyond one-off charity initiatives such as the ALS ice bucket challenge and has kept the momentum year-on-year; 70% of 2015’s fundraisers were new, and they managed to raise £57.6m in 2018 across 20 countries.

But how does the original charity month continue to stay relevant in the age of short attention spans, capricious trends and fierce competition?

Well, let me tell you…

Simple, light-hearted messaging

Movember employs a winning combination of print, digital and event marketing. It is refreshing in it’s approach to messaging, ensuring that it is light-hearted, accessible and most importantly, witty. It is a campaign you want to be a part of. They effectively communicate a very serious message around increases in male suicide and prevalence of testicular and prostate cancer without bombarding their audiences with harrowing images and guilt-trips.

The call to action is also simple… grow a moustache to raise awareness for men’s health. These moustaches then go onto act as a walking banner ad for Movember, further increasing their exposure.

Forever evolving

Originally a campaign around testicular and prostate cancer, Movember have evolved with the time and now include mental health and suicide prevention. This has enabled them to stay front and centre of the World’s current men’s health issues.

They also welcome feedback and use this to fuel their own innovation. With 10-15% of their members being women, they have introduced ‘Mo Sistas’ and initiatives such as ‘Move – 60km for the 60 men lost to suicide each hour’. This has taken the focus away from facial hair and in doing so broken down gender boundaries and allowed people to raise money by engaging in physical activity and track it with their Fitbit.

Brand collaboration

As a way of targeting and tapping into new audiences Movember collaborates with leading brands such as Gillette and L’Oreal Men and gets their support with fundraising activities and events. More recently, they have partnered with Formula 1 Racing, giving them exposure to older men that are interested in F1, a key demographic given their higher risk of health issues and difficulty to reach.

Ultimately, Movember have defied the odds and remained relevant for nearly 17 years by employing a few simple marketing tactics and keeping their ears to the ground and evolving with the times. Will the Movember giant keep it up? Time will only tell…

To find out more about Movember and the great things they are doing for Men’s health, please visit: https://uk.movember.com/