Through a new marketing push, a leading condom brand is hoping it can convince people to take their hands off their phones – and put them on each other.
Self-proclaimed "sexual well-being leader" Durex has launched a new mobile app for Android devices (it will soon launch for Apple devices as well) that allows couples to agree on times to put their phones to sleep, in order to spend time together.
The app is a spinoff of an online video campaign that profiled couples who spend too much time with their technology, and less time with each other. The video concluded that the magical technology that could improve people's sex lives was the off button on their devices. The new app will encourage them to use it more often.
The Reckitt Benckiser Group PLC-owned brand is hoping that by minimizing screen time, it will maximize the occasions for use of its condoms, gels, lubricants and personal massagers.
App marketing is nothing new – plenty of brands have created apps that attempt to engage people with games or by providing a useful service. (Charmin's "Sit or Squat" app, which maps public restrooms and rates their cleanliness, is a notable example.) By doing so, marketers are hoping to reach consumers more effectively on the devices they keep with them all day long. Convincing someone to download what is essentially an advertising tool, however, is a tough sell.
Could Durex overcome that, or will people simply find an app that purports to help them with their intimacy, a little creepy?