Interactive Marketing: Dove’s “The Campaign for Real Beauty”

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Interactive Marketing: Dove’s “The Campaign for Real Beauty”

In 2006, Unilever launched an innovative campaign through their newly minted master brand Dove. The aim of this campaign was to unify and expand Dove’s product lines while also emphasizing the importance of self esteem for young women. Dove did considerable research into the feelings and perceptions women had regarding the often times unattainable image of “beauty” commonly portrayed in the beauty industry’s advertisements. Through their research Dove found that the majority of women felt as though they did not match the beauty standards set by the models in the typical beauty industry ad and as a result over time developed self-esteem issues. Dove then took this information and went a set further by developing an interactive marketing campaign featuring “everyday” women. This campaign encouraged uninhibited input, both positive and negative, with the goal of creating a society wide conversation about women and the unrealistic expectations of beauty forced upon them. While initially Dove’s campaign had many skeptics within the advertising community who thought allowed free interaction was too risky/poor brand management, Dove ultimately prevailed as they accomplished the dialogue and made a lot of noise doing so. This campaign was genius in that Dove was able to reach an enormous audience by way of free air time they received as the story was covered by major shows such as Oprah and The Today Show. It is also worth noting that while many were initially skeptical of Dove’s strategy, the approach has become common in today’s marketing climate as many seek to follow the precedent set by Unilever and Dove.


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