New breast cancer campaign channeling Mad Men era

Canadian charity Rethink Breast Cancer is playing off '60s stereotypes to bring 'breast awareness back into the office.'

Canadian charity Rethink Breast Cancer is taking cues from the success of Mad Men by launching a groovy multimedia campaign to ‘bring breast awareness back into the workplace’ by playfully using ’60s office stereotypes to target young professionals.

‘Working with ’60s imagery is a great way to use humour in a way that is not offensive or crass and at the same time feels fresh and original,’ Alison Gordon, VP strategy, marketing and communications, Rethink Breast Cancer, tells MiC. ‘Our goal is to engage a younger audience in fundraising and awareness, and by using this type of 1960s humour, take the fear out of the campaign.’

Rethink’s campaign endeavours to motivate professionals to sell exclusive Fashion Targets Breast Cancer T-shirts at work. Fashion Targets Breast Cancer is a worldwide charitable program of the Council of Fashion Designers of America Foundation.

To that end, the Toronto-based John St. agency crafted magazine, newspaper and online ads to drive people to the Fashion Targets Breast Cancer microsite, as well as a viral video that pokes fun at educational films from the 60s. It’s available on YouTube at, and has also been promoted on Facebook via breast cancer support groups. Media shop Initiative placed the ads, and PR was handled by Toronto-based Six Degrees Medical Consulting.

‘Being aware of breast cancer is important everywhere,’ says Stephen Jurisic, co-CD, John St. ‘Just because it’s the workplace doesn’t mean the subject should be off limits.’

All elements of the campaign drive people to register to sell the T-shirts at Then, on Oct. 24, Fashion Targets Friday, Canadian men and women will wear their shirts to display their support for the cause.