(Disclaimer: The following article features adult themes. Reader discretion is advised)
Adult film enthusiasts (i.e. pretty much all Aussie men) have been hit with some hard lessons over the past few weeks thanks to a stealthily placed public health message in an X-rated online film. The porno, a parody of Game of Thrones aptly titled Game of Balls, features an interruption half way through its salacious viewings wherein the leading star, Eva Lovia, addresses the audience directly and uses her co-stars private parts to demonstrate how to check for genital abnormalities that might be an indication of testicular cancer. She then points toward an on-screen link to playwithyourself.org – an online initiative where men can find out more information, seek help and continue to spread awareness of testicular cancer.
By all accounts it’s a very ballsy marketing stunt and the product of some rather ingenious collaborative work from the testicular cancer organisation The Blue Ball foundation and M & C Saatchi Sydney, who have teamed up with Digital Playground, an adult film company, to deliver the message during testicular cancer awareness month.
Interestingly, the campaign has been deliberately implemented without any PR, relying instead on the coinciding release of the fifth season of Game of Thrones to garner attention. And to their credit the strategy has worked extremely well. Indeed, as more and more Game of Thrones fanatics downloaded the fifth season, the porno-parody began to circulate. It was placed on five of the top free adult entertainment sites used by Aussie men.
Naturally, publications began to hear about the initiative and continued to spread the message. Over 80 publications have written about the self-described “pornterruptive” campaign, and consequently views have been pushed beyond 1.5 million.
Ultimately, the greatest testimony to the campaign’s success lies in the fact that over 200k people have visited the campaign website, meaning that awareness of testicular cancer has certainly reached the targeted demographic of 20-39 year old men.
Ben Walsh, the Executive Creative Director of M&C Saatchi, had this to say about the campaign: “We’re always looking for surprising new ways to reach people with messages that matter. This time we really caught men with their pants down – and all for a good cause.”
Lets hope they continue to erect campaigns as crafty as this one in the future.