Selling the Unsellable: Marketing Disability

Selling the Unsellable: Marketing Disability


Friday 14th September, 2018: 3:00pm - 4:00pm


The Hall


Facilitated by:

Chloe Hayden, Actor and Advocate

An ambassador for Yellow Ladybugs, Aspergers Victoria and Treehouse Geelong, Chloe dedicates her life to being a role model, advocate and encourager to children and adults alike on the Autism spectrum, helping their families to see through and get a greater understanding. Photo of Chloe Hayden, Actor and Advocate

Panelists include:

Ben Flynn, Marketing and Public Relations Manager, genU

Ben is the Executive Producer of Jeremy the Dud, a short film that creates a world where everyone has a disability except for those referred to as ‘without specialty’ or ‘Duds’. The film’s trailer has had over 10 million views online since November 2017 and changed the way people are talking about disability.

Photo of Ben Flynn, Marketing and Public Relations Manager, genU

Adam Ferrier, Consumer Psychologist, Co-Founder of Thinkerbell

Thinkerbell is an agency that fuses together marketing sciences and hard-core creativity – or as we like to put it – ‘Measured Magic’.  He is one of Australia’s most awarded and recognised creative strategists, and author of ‘The Advertising Effect: How to change behaviour’.

Photo of Adam Ferrier, Consumer Psychologist, Co-Founder of Thinkerbell

Nicole Lee, Advocate

Nicole, who also uses a wheelchair, focuses on family violence perpetrated against those who have a disability, or who depend on carers or family members for support.

Photo of Nicole Lee, Advocate

Session Summary

Although many specialist disability services are funded through the NDIS, the NDIS approach is to maximise participants’ access to mainstream programs. How do community organisations learn how to be more inclusive? And what are the barriers preventing full participation of people with disability? Basically, the answer is attitudes. Changing attitudes is difficult. It requires consistent and targeted campaigns.

There have been some successful perception changing campaigns recently with the ‘Vote yes’ for same sex marriage equality, the ‘white ribbon’ campaign to raise awareness about the consequences of family violence and historically with the ‘Slip, slop, slap’ and ‘Quit’ campaigns that educated the community and change behaviour and attitudes in mainstream society. So how do we start changing attitudes about disability?

Recent TV shows have gone some way in getting the mainstream to sit up and take notice. Examples include You Cant Ask That and Employable Me, along with the Youtube sensation, Jeremy The Dud. This panel, facilitated by the fabulous Jeremy the Dud actress Chloe Hayden, will discuss how mainstream marketing strategies might be used to influence attitude change in the wider community.


Marie McInerney, Roving Report for SDAC18, caught up with all the panelists in a more intimate one-on-one conversation.