The Body Shop has always believed in beauty without cruelty and in campaigning for change. Its campaign with Cruelty Free International against animal testing led to a complete EU ban in 2013. When it polled 6,000 customers last year on which issues they wanted The Body Shop to fight for, animal testing was still the most popular.
The global cosmetics company believes it is a practice that is cruel and, with more reliable alternatives available, completely unnecessary. The Body Shop has shifted its attention to a global ban and plans to ask the UN General Assembly to pass an international convention that will ban animal testing everywhere forever.
To demonstrate the support for such an action, The Body Shop has set itself the task of getting eight million signatures from people around the globe by September 2018: it will then deliver the petition to the UN. It is the company’s most ambitious campaign. The campaign has been designed to work online and oﬄine. There is a three-pronged strategy: raise awareness, generate support and inspire action.
Firstly, The Body Shop has to make people aware that 80 per cent of the world’s countries still allow cosmetics to be tested on animals.The day before the 15 month campaign’s launch, The Body Shop briefed journalists about the complex issue. It created a suite of infographics and fact sheets that demystified the subject that were distributed to media in all 66 markets in which The Body Shop operates. It also launched a global influencer outreach programme with posts from high profile international celebrities showing their support for Forever Against Animal Testing.These included actors Maisie Williams, Ariel Winter and Adrien Grenier; musician Dalal, singer Jhene Aiko and presenter Kelly Osbourne. Each influencer received an exclusive campaign t-shirt to wear to demonstrate their support. More than 250 journalists and influencers attended a series of events in locations around the world, including Singapore, Portugal, Taiwan, Brazil and Japan, to launch the campaign.
To encourage people to demonstrate their support, The Body Shop developed a campaign hashtag #ForeverAgainstAnimalTesting and a campaign ‘bunny ear’ social media gesture that was easily identifiable. Supporters are encouraged to demonstrate this by sharing content on social media to reach as many people as possible. Creative and engaging displays were put up in more than 3,000 stores across 66 markets. Posters were put up on windows, banners were positioned behind tills and petitions were available for customers to sign. Many stores even held in-store petition drive events to raise awareness. Customers will also soon be able to download a mobile pass that will provide news about the campaign as well as an up-to-date petition counter.
Within three months of launch, The Body Shop had achieved more than 2.6 million signatures. Its influencers’ online activities reached almost 22 million followers in its first week, achieving one million interactions and engagement rates as high as seven per cent.
Some influencers demonstrated their support on Instagram – the campaign’s reached 24.9 million followers within three months; created videos on YouTube and blogged about the subject. There have also been almost 1,600 items of coverage about the #ForeverAgainstAnimalTesting. ‘This is a truly international campaign, which genuinely matches The Body Shop’s USP,’ said the judges.