P&G’s Pantene & Westfield Matildas Stars Launch Inspirational ‘Ribbon Of Strength’ Campaign

DD Wednesday Pantene Matildas 1

The start of December saw P&G’s Pantene brand team up with Football Federation Australia and the Westfield Matildas for an integrated and participatory ‘Ribbon Of Strength’ activation which aims to inspire women to follow their sporting passions.


The Australian haircare brand, which recently became an official partner of the Australian women’s national team, leverages this new tie-up for the December launch of Pantene’s latest ‘Ribbon of Strength’ initiative: an ongoing campaign which seeks to encourage all women to overcome their fears, to find their inner strength and to actively participate in sport.


This is the second year of the riboon led initiative and the 2019 campaign is fronted by Matildas star players Ellie Carpenter and Katrina Gorry and spans TV, online, social and print linked by the hashtags #RibbonOfStrength and #WeAreUnbreakable.


Working in harness with a trio of agencies – Publicis Groupe’s Herd MSL (creative and PR), Starcom (media) and Publicis Sport & Entertainment (sponsorship) – the campaign was teased in late November and then officially launched on 3 December with a powerful spearhead spot called ‘Pantene x Westfield Matildas | Ribbon of Strength’.



This was supported by a set of creative content across the brand’s platforms and channels.






The campaign emerged after a research phase by the haircare brand which outlines the challenges women experience online and in real life when playing sport and highlights just how vital role models (such as the Matildas) are when it comes to inspiring the sports stars of the future.


The ribbon initiative, which first launched last year, is in response to this research which found that 57% of women stop playing sport by the age of 24 primarily because of self-doubt.


Indeed, 65% of women say that they have witnessed or experienced negative criticism online or in real-life when playing sport.


According to Jane Wecker, associate marketing director at Pantene: “The Pantene Ribbon of Strength was created in a bid to inspire the future female sports stars of Australia, and ultimately get more women and girls participating in sports, which is why Pantene is delighted to be working with the FFA and the Westfield Matildas in their ongoing efforts to increase female excellence in sport. Through our sponsorship of the Matildas, we are proud to support the FFA’s Football Your Way program, which aims to increase female participation in football nationally.”




Pantene worked with sponsorship agency Publicis Sport & Entertainment to agree a two-year partnership deal with the Westfield Matildas which was a deal timed to leverage spiking interest in the side as the team gears a season which will peak at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.


This late 2019 initiative apes similar previous Pantene women’s sports initiatives in other markets such as its #BraidsOfStrength project launched on International Women’s Day in Malaysia (see case study).


This campaign also adds to the growing heritage of innovative and powerful activation around the Matilda’s which also includes work such as Hyundai’s ‘Thank You Letters’ (see case study).










Publicis Sport & Entertainment



Westfield Matildas






Football Federation Australia







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