Over the course of a working life, an average Swedish woman earns a quarter million Euros less than a man, performing the same work. Every day, she works for free after four o'clock, while he gets paid until five – and it’s been like this for more than 30 years now.
So what does a woman have to do to get a raise? The answer is simple: be a man.
Annelie Nordström, president of Sweden’s largest union, Kommunal, decided to protest against wage discrimination by performing a “sex change” – and invited the 400 000 members to join her.
A video news release featuring Annelie, transformed into a man, giving her best tips on how to get a raise was released exclusively to Sweden's largest media outlet. Simultaneously, a national print campaign ran the same message, while a series of events and outdoor activities invited Swedish women to join the protest. Everything pointed to Kommunal's photo app, a simple way for anyone to conduct a quick sex change.
This emotive way of conveying a serious message resulted in a national discussion about equality. In fact, the response in earned media supported by carefully selected advertising made this the largest campaign for wage equality in Sweden for over 30 years, reaching more than half the population through editorial coverage and earning 15 million impressions in social media.
The massive attention was used to launch a report that not only proves the inequality in numbers, but also suggests seven ways to change it.