Finding new and innovative ways to reach women, adolescent girls, and the general public with information about family planning and safe abortion options is critical to DKT’s success. DKT’s experience and expertise in the use of innovative media approaches ranges from wall paintings on the sides of buildings in rural India, to websites and Facebook in the Philippines, Pakistan, and Brazil, to mobile video trucks in rural Ethiopia.
There are many other examples of innovation from DKT programs. In 2009, DKT launched Indonesia’s first nationwide television advertising for IUDs. The advertisements depicted a young woman holding a “slim” IUD in her fingers, stressing how small and comfortable it was. The slightly smaller IUD was chosen in Indonesia because research revealed that Indonesian women were concerned that IUDs were too big to be comfortable in their bodies. In the Philippines, the condom brand Frenzy was specifically created for the youth market.
In Ethiopia, where running is a national pastime, DKT sponsors a very popular 10K race for both men and women. At a recent sponsored race, the runner’s route was lined with banners for Confidence injectable contraceptives.In India, DKT’s affiliate Janani frequently sponsors athletic tournaments and other events for women in the states of Bihar and Jharkhand, one of India’s poorest regions. Janani’s recent sponsorship of a women’s soccer tournament included the promotion of its Surya Clinics as well as long-acting and permanent methods of birth control. On another occasion, Janani sponsored a popular women’s boxing tournament. At these athletic events, DKT’s publicity stresses the importance of family planning for the health and wellbeing of women and girls.
In India in 2010, DKT created and aired a series of pioneering advertisements for medical abortion. These groundbreaking advertisements skillfully and movingly dramatized the emotional conflicts of unwanted pregnancy with assurances about the safety and privacy of medical abortion drugs. To our knowledge, these are the first and only television advertisements for medical abortion anywhere in the world.
In DKT’s Mumbai program, community-based activities play an important role. On market days especially, DKT peer educators in rural Maharashtra gather and address groups of women who have come from their villages to trade. The women are quickly attracted to discussion sessions where they can hear about family planning and get their questions answered. In Ethiopia, similar community-based activities help spread the word on family planning.
DKT is on the cutting edge in the use of new technologies to reach young and under-served populations. In Turkey, DKT used a new website, Facebook, Google Adwords, an e-newsletter, viral marketing, email marketing, banner advertisements, and advertisements on a Turkish gay and lesbian rights organization website to promote DKT’s own brand of Fiesta condoms. In the first 18 months of Fiesta’s ad campaign among sexually active young people, sales reached 4.3 million condoms. Eight percent of them were sold online. In Mozambique and Indonesia, active Facebook pages provide interactivity to young people on the issues of HIV/AIDS and emergency contraception. Hotlines for family planning and HIV information are becoming more accessible to DKT as cell phone use increases, and financial transactions via cell phone are becoming more common.