In 2016, a client asked Zebra Strategies to gather feedback from members of one of their community partners regarding the evolution of their “Sure” campaign umbrella. The goal of these sex-positive campaigns is to reach all New Yorkers and encourage them to choose their preferred tools to prevent HIV and other STIs, regardless of their HIV status.
Our Initial Findings
Zebra Strategies conducted a 90-minute focus group and discovered these insights:
The valuable feedback gathered from our study resulted in recommendations to redirect a campaign that would have potentially alienated the target audience:
Move forward with an empowering and positive message that connects the idea of staying “safe” with sex as something to enjoy, not fear
Create specific campaigns that target Black and Latinx women, who are considered unofficial community leaders
Show real people with real bodies in real settings, offering testimonials about how they prevent HIV
These recommendations influenced the “Play Sure” campaign, but can also be seen in later campaigns, such as the Positive Series for the U=U campaign and the Be HIV Free campaign.