Case Study

Keep India Smiling – Oral Health Month

665 x 275 Colgate

Oral care needs a lot more attention in India. In 2004, Colgate launched a national oral care awareness drive called Oral Health Month (OHM) in partnership with the Indian Dental Association (IDA). This annual programme had provided free dental check-ups to over 24 million Indians in till 2015. In 2016, Colgate conducted a Consumer Usage & Attitude Study (CUAS -2016) pan India and found that less than one third of the population had visited a dentist in the past year.

Colgate wanted to drive 5 million consumers across 1000 towns and cities in India to Colgate's free dental camps (over a two-month timeframe) and also convince 30,000 dentists across India to donate their time and services to provide free consultations in the dental camps. But more importantly, they wanted to raise awareness among Indians on the importance of oral care and convince 30% of Indians to brush their teeth twice a day.

Therefore, acting on the insight that Indians are less concerned about oral health, but very interested in how their smile looks to others, Colgate launched an integrated marketing campaign to Keep India Smiling. The mission of the campaign was to inculcate healthy oral habits among Indians, by making dental checkups accessible to all. The campaign included free in-clinic dental check-ups and mobile dental vans travelling to underprivileged areas, across numerous cities, covering schools as well as CSD camps, modern trade stores and partner NGOs.

The communication efforts were two-pronged:

Driving Consumers to Camps

  • Oral Health Month was promoted on 36.7 million packs of 4 Colgate SKUs.

  • Social media leveraged through 'Smile Stories' videos of things that make Indians smile.

  • A national news release to more than 100 cities on the free dental check-ups and related information.

Driving Behaviour Change Through Direct Engagement

  • 34,000 dental professionals from IDA across 1100 towns supported with dental kits, collateral and Colgate toothpastes. Media interactions conducted with leading dentists.

  • Placed 222 mobile vans with 2 dentists each across 45 towns for check-ups.

  • Check-ups in more than 150 schools, touching more than 97,000 kids.


  • 6 million people participated in the free dental check-up drive in the Oral Health Month Drive

  • Initiatives such as Oral Health Month have maintained Colgate's lead in market share (53.3% YTD 2016)

  • Over 1133 print exposures for programme announcement release with +60% category-A publications.

  • Over 150 print exposures for dentist media interactions across 24 cities with +70% category-A publications.

  • Smile Stories had over 6.5 million views on YouTube.

Awards won - 2

Sabres South Asia Awards 2017
  • Diamond SABRE in the category for Superior Achievement In Brand-Building

ICCO Global Awards 201
  • World’s Best Campaign in the CSR category