Consumer goods giant Unilever is wading into the chronic shortage of dental specialists in underdeveloped and developing markets. The maker of Pepsodent and P/S brands of oral care is specifically taking aim at the yawning gap for dentists in Southeast Asia with its 'Don't Wait Until It's Too Late #TalkToADentist' campaign that was launched on March 20 to coincide with World Oral Health Day.
The firm's campaign is rooted in some grim data on the availability of dentists in the region. While WHO recommends one dentist for every 7,500 people, this figure stands at 25,000 in Vietnam and far worse at 220,000 in Indonesia. As a result, an average resident in Vietnam will have lost seven teeth by the time they turn 65 and an average Indonesian will have lost 11.
Unilever's campaign film by MullenLowe traces the dental evolution of a boy who faces the wonder and joy of losing his first tooth, all the way into his adulthood and old age where the gnawing worry of his dental issues continue. Through this campaign, Unilever will provide teledentistry consultations and free dental check-ups via dental camps to tackle barriers to access such as distance and dentist availability.
This campaign will be shared across local Unilever Oral Care brands' social channels including YouTube and Facebook and will run for a month in Indonesia, Vietnam, Bangladesh and Ghana.
"We believe that everyone should be able to access convenient and affordable expert dental care," says Mariano Sampietro, global vice president of oral care at Unilever. "Through our campaign, we hope to raise awareness to ensure people understand the importance of acting early, from the moment a problem arises."
In addition to this campaign, Unilever has engaged Edelman London to use KOLs to raise awareness about early dental intervention. Using an augmented reality filter, influencers will appear on their social media channels with a missing tooth and encourage people not to delay seeing a dental specialist.