Dove Campaign for Real Beauty
What compelled Dove to go for
Campaign for Real Beauty
• Conventional advertising set unrealistic
standards of beauty that most women
can‟t ever achieve.
• Beauty itself must be revitalised to reflect
women in their beauty as they really are.
• Ads seemed to tell women that they
should look like super models who
On September 29, 2004
Objective behind this Campaign
• As per Silvia Lagnado
“By questioning the accepted definition of
beauty, we hope to help women change
the way they perceive their bodies and
encourage them to feel beautiful
• There were several criticisms:
Some critics felt that Dove‟s „Real Beauty‟
campaign was contradictory.
Accused of being hypocritical
Objectification of women
Skeptical about their intentions of using
young girls in ads
• Dove literally narrowed down its marketing
strategy, so possibility of expanding their
marketing strategy in later stages is very
difficult and risky.
• As per some critics “Remodelling
consumer‟s perceptions and attitudes
would be quite difficult”
• They always need to keep media on their
side as media had a big role to play in the
success of this campaign. Their motto
should be “ Grab media attention.”
Minor Issue 1
• Danger of
as a product
• They should eradicate the misconception
that normal people are fat. They should
underscore that the supermodels are
anorexic, which is unhealthy.
Minor Issue 2
• They were sending some contradictory vibes.
(a) On one hand, the campaign was asking
women to celebrate who they really were and
on the other, the ads were aimed at selling a
range of products, that would help women
reduce their cellulite.
(b) It was also pointed out that Uniliver idealised
images and stereotypes in its other brands like
Slimfast, Lynx, Axe, Lux and Sunsilk
• Proper PR strategies to be implemented to
clear misconceptions of their product
variants, their target customers, and their
marketing strategies. The key word should
be “transparency” in order to earn faith.
Minor Issue 3
• The whole campaign could be a short term
• They should continuously undertake some
sort of fresh promotional campaigns
without losing their core values.
Minor Issue 4
• Undermining the aspirational essence in
itself is a big risk. Dove is completely
eliminating the reference group which kills
the aspirational element from the whole ad
• They need to create some sort of
reference groups by using successful
professionals who are very common in
their appearance rather than celebrities
and super models.
Minor Issue 5
• Some nascent competition has evolved
which could be threatening for Dove as
their whole idea can become stale.
• They have to continuously project
themselves as the pioneers of this kind of
advertising and to continuously remind
that they listen to common people.
• At the same time they need to
Minor Issue 6
• It is a challenge to sustain the same high
levels of loyal customer base that the
company has developed for the past 50
• They have to enhance their image by
conducting some kind of beauty programs
or fitness programs, in order to instill faith
among the loyal customers that they still
care for them.
• They should invest in R&D
Minor Issue 7
• Can adversely affect the sale of other
• Unilever as a whole should become more
involved in their CSR activities so as to
create an alibi.
Minor Issue 8
• It is unethical to exploit
girls between the age
groups of 8-12 on a
sole motive to sell
them their products
when they grow up,
putting this under the
surreptitious garb of
developing self esteem
• In such ads, they should project their
motives very explicitly and highlight the
good things they are doing.
• Again a strong PR strategy is essential for
• Transparency is the key word yet again to
diffuse these criticisms.
Minor Issue 9
• They can face the twin challenges of
evolving the brand without losing the
existing customer base, as well as driving
aggressive growth for this mature brand
• They have to invariably enter into the male
segment as well.
• They have to be constantly in the eyes of
Minor Issue 10
• Objectification of women as done by Dove
can be disastrous for their brand‟s
• Should be very careful about the
demographic sentiments, beliefs, culture
• Whenever women are involved, there are
ample chances of controversies, so they
should portray women in a very elegant
and dignified manner.
• Some element of aspiration has to be
incorporated so as to ensure longevity of
• To put it in the words of Charles Revson,
founder of Revlon, “In our factory we make
cosmetics. In the stores we sell hopes.”
• Whatever the case is, as of now, Dove has
succeeded in empowering femininity.