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Beauty: Done Well

Beauty: Done Well
The attraction of Dove's 'Real Beauty' campaign.

Today there are so many influential brands to be inspired by. At Being, we like to break down all the different things brands have ‘done well’ – so we can talk about them with you.

The Dove Marketing Campaign for Real Beauty
The Facts

Launched in 2004, this worldwide marketing campaign for ‘real’ beauty was not only comprised of advertisements, but also of video, workshops, sleepovers, a book publication and even a play.

With an aim to celebrate female physical diversity, Dove created a new marketing tactic – now dubbed the ‘mission strategy’. After extensive research, the company analysed existing ads targeting their desired market – women – and came to a very powerful realisation. For the majority of women, beauty campaigns were a source of anxiety, not confidence.

Embarking on a ‘mission’ to help women embrace their individuality, Dove began to feature ‘regular’ women in their advertisements – diverse in age, size, shape and ethnicity. Hugely interactive, the campaigns encouraged women to identify the beauty in others and themselves – empowering them to define their own standards of beauty.

The Results

Real Beauty’s feedback has been largely positive, receiving praise for its progressive depiction of women, and for encouraging them to actively determine their own sense of self-worth.

Since beginning the Real Beauty campaign Dove has started funds for a unique range of women, assisting in voicing their individual messages, stories and experiences. Continuing to expand on the diversity of their ‘real’ models, the company holds an advantage over its opposition – the Victoria’s Secret ‘Perfect Body’ campaign – of tall, thin, professional models.

What to Remember

Real Beauty exemplifies the importance of well-thought-out research in informing and building a successful marketing campaign.

Dove sold more than its products to an audience; it sold an idea. Taking a huge risk in an industry based on looks, the company never promised to make its customers more beautiful – instead it reminded them that they already were. By making customers feel good about their own image, Dove established positive associations between beauty and its brand.

If you want your marketing campaign to succeed, it’s integral you understand your audience – what they want, what they need, how they’re currently being targeted, how they perceive themselves etc. Consider your brand’s point of difference. What’s something that only you can offer? How can you work consumer perspective to your advantage?

If patience and care is invested into understanding the market, your effort will reap the rewards in time. Dove did. And they did it well.