International Women’s Day PSA

London : Los Angeles
  • Score Awaiting client review
  • Date Published
  • Reading Time 4-Minute Read

Empowerment is part of the GRRRL brand DNA and they wanted to create a social media campaign and activation that brought that idea to life.


  • On average, nearly 20 people per MINUTE are physically abused by an intimate partner in the United States.
  • More than 10 million women and men a year are physically abused.
  • 1 in 3 women has experienced some form of physical violence by an intimate partner.
  • 1 in 5 women in the United States has been raped in their lifetime.
  • Women around the world aged 15-44 are more at risk from rape and domestic violence than from cancer, car accidents, war and malaria.
  • The poverty rate for women aged 18 to 64 is 13.4%, while the poverty rate for men aged 18 to 64 is 9.7% in the United States. Minority women were 35 percent less likely to receive a job referral than Caucasian men.
  • The unemployment rate for African Americans has been at least twice as high as Caucasian unemployment for almost 50 years.
  • African-American women earn 64 cents and Latina women earn 56 cents for every dollar earned by a Caucasian man.
  • 94% of all teenage girls have been shamed for the way their body looks.

These statistics aren’t just horrible, they point to a pattern of behavior that needs to stop. It wasn’t enough to draw attention to the problem, we wanted to remind people that we all obey the rules of society every day, without even thinking about it. And in doing so, make them think about other times they know they should stop and yet don’t.

And we had to do this, without big a name, a big budget or a big following.

But what we had, was a big idea.


Empowerment and Inclusion have always been a part of GRRRL’s DNA, so we were always going to do something on International Women’s Day. But the key difference between GRRRL and the big sports brands is that GRRRL lives and breathes the inclusion message 365 days of the year.

We were less inclined to promote our brand or IWD, but to try and make people think, to use any awareness we could get, to create some sort of behavioral change.

Using the ubiquitous STOP sign as a simple visual example of how we follow society’s rules without thinking about it, we sought to highlight other behaviors that need to stop.

The research data told us that the bigger issues facing women across the US today are, Domestic Violence, Racism, Sexual Assault, Body Bullying and Inequality.

together we rise


Under the cover of darkness, using a nimble guerilla crew, handheld cameras, and five athletes, we took to the streets of Los Angeles to make our mark.

We had commissioned 5 huge stencils, which we transported with us for the athletes to leave their message for LA to wake up to. As the athletes painted we filmed.

The next morning we started to put a film together of all our footage. Teaser ads cut from b-roll footage were created to run as Instagram & Facebook GIFs to our combined audience of 135k followers. The gifs teased a launch date and landing page. The launch date was brought forward to the weekend before IWD to ensure we didn’t get caught up in the noise of the day, and to make sure our point wasn’t missed.


Hosted initially on Facebook, where GRRRL has a modest but loyal 30k followers.

The spot performed better than the previous best-performing ad (28k views) 11 times over.

In the week around International Women’s Day, the spot had over 316 thousand views and was shared 345 times on Facebook alone.

The 5 x interview films hosted on Instagram and on Facebook were also successful in driving engagement, with the interview of Angel Rice getting 36 thousand views.

On IWD, our GRRRL TOGETHER work was Ad Age’s lead campaign on the day’s activity. We also had lead stories on Media Post’s Agency Daily and Think LA’s IWD newsletter.

Personal comments to the spot were humbling, with the spot resonating and being shared by women outside of the GRRRL community.