The Dove Real Beauty campaign, which ran between 2004 and 2017, was one of the most successful advertising campaigns ever. It all started when Dove discovered that only four percent of women around the world considered themselves beautiful. This was largely due to unrealistic standards set by airbrushed advertisements, which left many feeling inadequate or unattractive.
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Launching the Real Beauty Campaign
In response to this situation, Dove decided to launch a viral campaign called Real Beauty with a collection of stories about women discovering their own beauty. This campaign had an immediate impact and went on to become one of the most successful ad campaigns in recent history.
The campaign centered around showcasing real women who had traditionally been overlooked by society’s beauty standards. By turning the process of discovering one’s beauty into a story, Dove created an emotional connection with potential customers and tapped into their desire for authenticity and self-acceptance.
Authentic expression of Real Beauty catapults Dove to 163 million global views on YouTube
Dove also used social media as a platform to spread their message and encourage people to share their own stories about how they feel beautiful or have learned to accept themselves. This generated huge amounts of engagement; within a few days, the hashtag #RealBeauty had gone viral with millions of impressions and hundreds of thousands of shares across multiple platforms such as YouTube, Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.
What made Real Beauty Campaign so successful?
One key element that made this campaign so powerful was its ability to connect with people on a personal level by creating meaningful conversations around issues like body image and self-confidence that were close to people’s hearts. It also helped normalize discussions around these topics which had been largely taboo until then.
The success of this campaign can be seen through its numerous awards, including being named one of the top five Super Bowl Commercials by AdAge in 2008; achieving The Grand Prix in Cannes Lions Festival in 2013; being shortlisted for The Webby Awards five years in a row; receiving multiple Emmy Awards among others. Additionally, it’s estimated that this campaign helped increase Unilever’s sales from €44 billion in 2006 to €54 billion in 2017 – a growth rate three times higher than its competitors’.
In conclusion, although more traditional forms of advertising still exist today — TV commercials, radio ads etc — it is undeniable that campaigns such as Dove’s Real Beauty are continuing to redefine how brands engage with customers on both an emotional and practical level while providing huge returns on investment at minimal costs compared to other forms of marketing efforts.