This Drug Maker Is Using Empowerment and Emojis to Reach Millennial Women

#ActuallySheCan campaign for birth control pills

Headshot of Kristina Monllos

Brands creating empowerment campaigns for women is nothing new—there's even an award for it now. But a pharmaceutical company creating a platform to empower women's wellbeing? That's new. And that's what Allergan is doing with its new campaign, #ActuallySheCan, which ultimately support's its Lo Loestrin Fe birth control pills.

Allergan's new campaign uses a website and social media channels to create an environment for millennial women to "engage with each other and talk about their overall wellness," according to Herm Cukier, Allergan's vice president of women's healthcare. That includes talking about "sleeping habits, social relationships, partner relationships, climate relationships, eating relationships and, as part of that, their reproductive options and choices and how that fits into their overall wellness and enjoyment of life."

Though the new platform isn't altruistic, the company hopes conversations about wellness will eventually turn to conversations about birth control, with women opting to learn about the company's birth control pills. 

"This generation of women is, in so many ways, different than other generations of women," Cukier said. "Where they're getting their information, how they're processing their information, who they trust to get their information from [is different], and they certainly don't want information pushed at them."

The new campaign—created by an in-house team and agency Faith Popcorn BrainReserve—encourages millennial women to "participate and talk to each other, and in a language that's really meaningful for them," he added. That language includes emojis. The website features technology that allows women to create their own emojis, which Allergan dubs "shemojis." 


A photo posted by @actuallyshecan on

Allergan tapped celebrities like Lea Michele and Lo Bosworth as spokeswomen for the campaign. The company has also partnered with Cosmopolitan magazine for an essay contest and Her Campus for live events. 

Cukier said the brand isn't looking at this as a traditional campaign that would run for three or six months. Instead, it will be an on-going platform—Allergan has plans through the end of the year—that will evolve and grow. 

@KristinaMonllos Kristina Monllos is a senior editor for Adweek.