Colon cancer is the nation’s second deadliest form of cancer. But it’s also highly treatable—when it’s caught early. And although it’s often considered “old white man’s disease,” the fastest growing case rates are among millennial men and men of color.
There are many reasons why these men are reluctant to talk to their doctors about getting screened: they don’t notice symptoms, they think colonoscopies hurt, they are concerned about the cost, they’re embarrassed, or more recently, they’ve put off preventative care until the COVID-19 pandemic subsides. But colonoscopies aren’t the only way to diagnose for colon cancer. Fecal immunochemical tests (FITs) are a fast, affordable, reliable, indicator tests that can be taken in the comfort of one’s own home. To catching more early cases and save more lives, the Colon Cancer Foundation—the most progressive national nonprofit leading the charge for awareness, research, and treatment—needed to figure out a way for these young men to take an FIT test.
Our solution was to offer them something they couldn’t resist: the opportunity to try an exclusive beer that they could only get by trading a stool sample. We partnered with Baltimore’s DuClaw Brewing Company to create a unique variation of their fan-favorite Unicorn Farts sour ale: a fruity sour ale with edible glitter called Thanks for Giving a Crap.
To sweeten the deal, we partnered with Squatty Potty to offer a limited-edition bathroom stool along with the beer. The only way to get the bundle was to commit to taking an at-home FIT test from Everlywell. The bundle would be delivered right to their doorstep by alcohol delivery service CraftShack.
Elevation built the website for the promotion, where video content from Squatty Potty featured Dookie the soft-serve pooping unicorn on the brewing floor at DuClaw. The promotion went live in March 2021 to coincide with Colon Cancer Awareness Month. Public relations partners 212 Communications spread the word from beer enthusiasts to morning radio shows to the medical community, scoring pick-ups from Shark Tank’s Lori Greiner and Baltimore Orioles first baseman Trey Mancini.
The entirely pro-bono effort brought more than 14,000 unique visitors to GiveaCrapChallenge.com with $0 of paid media. More than 2,000 people committed to taking an FIT test in exchange for a chance to get one of 400 cases of DuClaw’s Thanks for Giving a Crap beer and we also raised $20,000 in donations for the Colon Cancer Foundation. The Colon Cancer Foundation’s social media channels saw an 18% increase in followers over the course of the promotion, and we received dozens of emails from survivors and families of those who lost their battle with colon cancer, thanking DuClaw and Squatty Potty for their boldness and humor in raising awareness to defeat colon cancers.