Plan International 

Sheboard

Raising awareness about how we speak to young girls

Background

Research shows the way we talk to girls influences how they see themselves and their abilities. We tell girls they are pretty and boys they are smart. By the age of six they believe it.

Challenge

Start a conversation online, to help people rethink the way they speak to their daughters, siblings and young girls.

Raise global and mass awareness about how we talk to young girls.

Solution

Sheboard, conceived by ad agency hasan & partners, is a virtual keyboard for boosting girls’ confidence. It suggests gender-neutral language through predictive text input. It helps everyone reflect upon – and ultimately change – the way they talk to and about young girls. 

For example, when typing “Daddy’s little girl” the Sheboard app changes the language to: “Daddy’s little adventurer”.

hasan & partners collected words for the keyboard from children and campaign spokespeople by asking questions like: how should young  girls be described? Based on these words and research regarding gender-biased language, they created a dictionary of more than 2,500 words. 

The app was created together with Samsung and made available in the Google Play store. 

The creative idea was one part of the pie, but the dissemination of it and strategy behind the international outreach was what would make this truly global. 

To make this campaign global, it was promoted with a fully integrated social and PR campaign. Hitting the most relevant verticals in top tier media we outreached to journalists from all over the world in leading business, tech, education, mental health, human rights and creative media. 

We adapted the content so that it was formatted in the best way for social. We created a video press release that was disseminated by social publishers such as LADBible and NowThis – which have highly engaged communities and videos that reach millions of people, gain high quality engagaements and spark conversations online. 

Results

Sheboard was featured in global lead media with an editorial reach of over 612 million. 

It was also featured in local social communities, helping Plan to shape its position as a global girls’ rights organisation. 

Sheboard had a social reach of over 7.2 million. 

It went on to win awards at Cannes Lion and the Clio awards, amongst others, and, most importantly, it changed the behaviour of people around the world, one person at a time.