Karen Clifford Skin Cancer Charity: Computertan

Our campaign was developed to talk to young people about the dangers of skin cancer, what causes it and how it can be prevented. We chose to target this audience by convincing them of a new technology that would enable tanning from their own computer screens. An infomercial was created offering free online tanning sessions, which was seeded across the web and key bloggers, together with an extensive PR campaign. 25,000 flyers offering free tanning sessions were distributed and the film was displayed on 50 digital cross track panels in 10 London Underground stations and on 1000 London black taxi screens. Online banners were positioned on 250 key websites receiving over 17million page impressions. In a second wave of activity, an iPhone application was launched and sent out to our email database with supporting online advertising.

Once at computertan.com, users navigate the site until it becomes apparent that the campaign is a hoax. Stark images depicting the effects of skin cancer appear on screen alongside figures representing the number of people that die each day from the disease. The Karen Clifford Skin Cancer Charity (SKCin) is then revealed. Users can then visit Skcin’s website or hoax a friend in to logging on to the site.

The site attracted over 402,000 visitors from 190 countries, registering over 1.5million page views, with an average dwell time of 2 minutes 15 seconds. Since launch 262 blog posts have been logged. 7million people were exposed to CBS digital cross tracks, 700,000 more through London Cab vision and we achieved over 17million page impressions from online banners. Our PR campaign delivered national coverage in The Sun, The Independent, The Daily Express, The Guardian, on BBC News and on BBC Radio One. International coverage included 66 specialist stories varying from The New Zealand Herald, Fox US and Yahoo News. Rubber Republic, our online blog partner, secured coverage across 8,100 websites. “SKCin’s objectives; to significantly increase public awareness and education of skin cancer risks, increase early diagnosis, thereby saving lives. There is no doubt that McCann has made a huge and otherwise unobtainable impact in this regard and for that we are eternally grateful.” Richard Clifford, SKCin.      

Advertising Agency: McCann London, UK
Executive Creative Directors: Brian Fraser, Simon Learman
Creative Directors: Cameron Mitchell
Copywriter: Cameron Mitchell
Art Director: Elliot Harris
Director of Digital content: Mark Fallows
Designer: Ben Howarth
New Business Director: Simon Hill
New Business Co-ordinator: Eleanor Tylee


pulautikus's picture
118 pencils

roundabout way but great to ensnare your audience.


sirvan's picture
29870 pencils

Yeah, but that seems par for the course these days. A lot of effort to deliver a simple message.


"I love some things, and don't love some other things."

Jaap Grolleman's picture
Jaap Grolleman
6996 pencils

I hate that last screen. I'd be pissed if people confront me with that!!

As said above, a lot of effort to deliver such a message.

everartz's picture
7611 pencils

so you put people in jeopardy to tell them about the danger? i think this is the stupidest idea ever!

| Everartz |

Aesk's picture
2 pencils

Besides exposure to gross images, how was anyone put in danger?

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