Marketing to Women: Dove Self-Image Campaign Elevates Advertising

May 5, 2013 § 2 Comments

Dove’s new Real Beauty campaign exposes the fact that only 4% of women around the world consider themselves beautiful.  Their new campaign has a new tagline “You are more beautiful than you think”.  The revealing video has been viewed 42 million times! What is so provocative?  Take a look.

The video shows a forensic sketch artist drawing images of women based on their own descriptions.  After drawing the first sketch, the artist then draws a sketch of the same person from the description furnished by someone else.  The resulting sketches showed the difference in the beauty that others see in us versus our own self-image.  The truth in these spots revolves around the way women undervalue themselves and their looks.  The popularity of the sentiment is undeniable.  Tanzina Vega chronicled the popularity of the work in a recent New York Times article.

Dove has worked to communicate that real beauty is more than the waif-like models and celebrities that most beauty brands use.  Does this type of soul-searching grow business?  Evidently. Dove was a $200 million soap brand in the early 1990s that has grown into a brand that has been estimated to be nearly $4 billion dollars today.

Why do women value this approach?  The brand Dove has communicated to women that it understands and values them.  This approach is not only true to women’s emotions but it is differentiating from most beauty products that sell a more unattainable beauty.  The truth of the brand is the truth of women.  The brand speaks to emotional benefits that reward inner beauty, not just vanity.  This compelling message allows the brand to speak to all generations, to launch brand extensions, and to create meaningful programs with women and girls.  A similar approach was taken by P&G with their Olympic Mothers campaign.  It showed Mothers they were valued and important.

Brands that can speak to a higher truth that women value will win both marketing to women and the purchase war.


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§ 2 Responses to Marketing to Women: Dove Self-Image Campaign Elevates Advertising

  • Monika McCurdy says:

    Your statement at the end applies to women and men alike. You said it very well. I am working on “Duck Dynasty”. I am crafting the “brand promise”. It is all about “speaking to a higher truth”. You got me on the right track.




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