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Dove’s Real Beauty Campaign: Evolution of a Social Message

By June 15, 2023April 2nd, 2024No Comments

In 2004, Dove revolutionized skincare marketing by launching their ‘Real Beauty’ Campaign.

Celebrated for the decision to represent women of all shapes, sizes, ages, and skin tones in their ad campaigns, Dove was celebrated by marketing industry executives and embraced by consumers. They saw a 700 percent increase in sales in just six months.

While the campaign continued, the celebration did not. Subsequent efforts in 2017 were met with ridicule and flat out rejection.

But is Dove off-track, or has society changed too much to appreciate their investments in body positivity?

In this episode of Dial P for Procurement, Kelly Barner reviews three notable ads in this 20-year long campaign, looking for differences in motivation, execution, and reception:

  • 2004, When diverse natural beauty was showcased, celebrated and awarded
  • 2017, When Dove’s efforts brought them more ridicule than recognition
  • And 2023: when the world spat back at their collaboration with Epic Games

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