I don’t have much to add by way of commentary to this campaign. Well, I do, but it’s pretty much all been said over the last few weeks that the ad has been in the spotlight. I’ve just got this to add:
Beautiful on the inside too.
Sure, when compared to many other leading beauty brands, Dove’s brand image is a much more natural fit for this kind of advertising. The fact that they are trying to maintain a dialogue on this subject is positive, whatever the motive. We’ve got to start somewhere, and my word, there’s a long way to go to portray healthy body images for the female consumer. That being said, once you start a dialogue on the subject, you’d best learn to follow through. Much has been said on Dove’s two-faced approach to ethical marketing: two very different faces (literally) for the Western consumer and those further afield. There’s a good article on that here, and an excellent and frequently updated page on the subject here: Skin whitening is NOT real beauty.
Finally, Dove has made it very clear that they wanted this campaign to go viral. Highly sensible in this day and age, what what. They could have been a bit more subtle about it however. Out of the last 12 YouTube videos I watched, a grand total of 10 started with the Dove ad. Even if I had been a receptive and, perhaps, admiring viewer on the first and second showing, you can bet I was rather fed up by the final time, and indeed much more likely to scrutinise the ad with an unforgiving eye. With the advent of YouTube advertising, this is something many companies will have to consider carefully. No one likes being bashed over the head repeatedly with an ad, no matter how clever or funny it may be.