Supermodel Mathira Promotes Family Planning for Pakistani Couples; Six Million Women Have Unmet Need for Contraception

Online popularity of DKT Pakistan’s advertising spots for “Josh” brand condoms illustrates effectiveness of social marketing techniques

WASHINGTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–The new television advertisement fromDKT Pakistan, featuring Pakistani supermodel Mathira Kahn, has been building acceptance and popularity for the “Josh” brand of flavored condoms and has received extensive social media viewership onYouTubeandFacebook. Such marketing reach brings family planning messages to millions of Pakistani couples, many with unmet needs for contraception in the world’s sixth most populous country.

“By emphasizing the quality and ‘cool factor’ of the product, we can reduce the social stigma of condom use and target all socio-economic groups to promote family planning.”

Because Pakistan’s population could double by 2050 at current growth rates, advocacy for family planning is essential, yet also still controversial; theDKT Pakistanad tastefully yet openly deals with this sensitive subject. However, as of Tuesday, July 22, 2013,press reportsindicate that the Pakistan Electronic Media Regulatory Authority (PEMRA) has directed its member television channels not to broadcast the ad.

The ad marks the first time that the benefits of condom use have been addressed on Pakistani national television. It portrays a “regular guy” who has just married supermodel Mathira, a faithful and dedicated woman who is devoted to her husband. When asked how he accomplished such a feat he replies in the ad’s tagline, “Bring ‘Josh’ into your life.”

“Our ads featuring Mathira are a major step to build contraception demand through mass media and non-traditional communication,” statesDKT PakistanCountry Director Juan Enrique Garcia. “By emphasizing the quality and ‘cool factor’ of the product, we can reduce the social stigma of condom use and target all socio-economic groups to promote family planning.”“

The simple fact is that it is not culturally accepted in Pakistan to speak publicly about condom usage and even worse to suggest in public the existence of a sexual relationship,” Garcia continued. “DKT Pakistanas an independent organization has accepted the challenge of changing the status quo and portraying the positive benefits of sexual and reproductive health. It is not our intent to be disrespectful, and we will suspend the campaign for the final 10 holy days of Ramadan. But we believe Pakistan’s population issues are such that we must use prime time television as an educational and public discussion tool on why a condom with ‘sexy’ attributes will do much to advance family planning.”

DKT Pakistan’s approach illustrates howDKT Internationalcountry directors such as Garcia develop and implement their programs using creativity and innovation in countries where sensitivities of tradition, religion and politics complicate their task. Already the success of this effort in Pakistan is apparent. In its first six months since beginning sales in November 2012, DKT has introduced the new “Josh” condom product line (with more than 3 million distributed), received government approval for a pilot program in Sindh and Punjab to establish partnerships with midwives, and made contraceptives available in more than 40 cities and towns and 8,000 pharmacies nationwide.

DKT Pakistan’ssocial marketing success reflects the parent organization’s worldwide effectiveness. In 2012DKT Internationalprograms in 19 countries distributed more than 600 million condoms through affordable marketing programs that prevented an estimated 8.2 million unwanted pregnancies, 1.7 million abortions, and more than 14,000 maternal deaths.

Since 1989,DKT Internationalhas provided safe and affordable options for family planning and HIV prevention through social marketing, establishing it as one of the largest private providers of family planning products and services in the developing world.


For DKT International

Media Contact:

Suzy Ginsburg, 713-721-4774