Mobile Metrix partnered with Unilever to improve the hygiene habits and behaviors of marginalized populations in Brazil, with a focus on hand washing and the treatment of water. Over 9 thousand surveys were conducted in four low-communities in Rio de Janeiro and Recife. After each survey, Mobile Agents™ distributed bars of soap, demonstrated proper hand washing techniques, and invited the residents to an educational seminar where water filters were raffled. After the intervention, 13% of families increased treating all of their drinking water, a significant number reported increased hand washing habits, and the Unilever brands became top of mind.
The study results guided Unilever in adjusting the retail price of their products in order to reach this untapped market, restructuring distribution, and revamping its marketing message. In addition to deepening understanding of the end user, the outreach built strong ties between the community leadership and Unilever, enabling greater ease of market entry into often-volatile business environments.