Dove Case Study

10 October 2016

However, even though these events make Dove appear as a flawless brand, both Dove’s sales and market share were dwindling and the competition remains on the rise. Thus, under the management of Kerstin Dunleavy, a re-launching of the brand was in order to bring Dove’s beauty products to the next level. Within this document, a detailed look at Dove’s positioning before and after the re-launch is given, as well as investigating and identifying opportunities within the marketing arena and making recommendations for the next phase of the re-launch titled “Campaign for Real Beauty. ”

Discuss Dove’s competitive position prior to re-launch, as well as the success of the 2004 re-launch. Prior to the re-launch of Dove products and the “Campaign for Real Beauty,” Dove was experiencing signs that would eventually lead to a major set-back if action was not taken. Despite the positive outlook of Dove’s quality, the natural ingredients, and the reliability of the product, the negatives were starting to outweigh the positives. Negatives such as, increasing competition and consumer’s feeling that the brand was out dated and old fashioned, resulted in a loss of emotional bond with consumers.

Through research it was identified that Dove products already had a reputable reputation for quality, but overall brand image was seen as outdated and boring and was really taking a toll on Dove. This became more evident as sales began to decline and market share was being loss to competitors, weakening their positioning against competitors. Thus said, Unilever knew that it needed to re-launch the Dove brand while still holding on to the brand’s current strengths.

They set out to do so by targeting three main objectives: (1) increasing market share through improvement of the brand image, (2) developing an outstanding marketing campaign, and (3) retaining the functional strengths of the brand. With these targets in mind, a global team lead by Kerstin Dunleavy set out to develop a new brand strategy for Dove beauty products. Before the new brand strategy and the re-launch of Dove products, extensive market research was conducted to understand the relationship of women to beauty.

Several notable observations were gathered, including the opportunity to redefine beauty in a way that Dove’s competitor’s had ignored. Thus said, the global team had created a new brand strategy to re-launch Dove using new and unconventional ideals of beauty. The “Campaign for Real Beauty” was launched in September of 2004 with an intention to increase revenues by 80 percent by taking a stand against traditional beauty product advertisements by using real, natural, women models of every size, shape, color, and age. The new brand strategy involving the real beauty campaign was determined to improve Dove’s positioning against competitors.

Through 800 newspaper and magazine articles, billboard ads, and massive media coverage, the results of phase one of the “Campaign for Real Beauty” were impressive. The campaign had helped nearly quadruple sales of Dove-brand products, as well increasing market share and web traffic significantly. Furthermore, Dove’s brand image had impressively shifted for the better by gaining attributes such as “open,” “active,” and “self-confident,” as well as strengthening existing characteristics, proving that women respected the use of real, natural models.

Through the success and their new brand image, Dove has managed to obtain a minor gain in positioning against competitors. However, it won’t take long before competition launches similar campaigns and the battle for market share cycles again. Thus said, Dove must continue to act quickly and strategically to keep its competitive advantage and to strongly position itself from competitors (Peter & Donnelly, 2011). Investigate and categorize the marketing arena for Dove and its competitors. Cosmetics fall into their own marketing arena.

It is the only other product, besides food, that consumers are in constant need of because cosmetics are used in our everyday lives. Cosmetics, in order to have any type of customer base, are made with great quality in mind. With all these different brands offering the same types and qualities of products, Dove had to branch out into another important segment of this cosmetics market. Cosmetics are being used just as much by men as they are used by women, and it is important that a cosmetics product line can compete in the market of men’s products as well.

Dove’s main competitors, Nivea, L’Oreal, and Garnier, have not crossed into making men’s products. The lack of men’s products gives Dove a competitive advantage in their arena. Dove has dominated in this category through their marketing and different direction. When Dove first launched their “Real Women Campaign”, their target age group was women between 30 and 39 that had never used skin firming products. This age group was ideal for Dove to target because their current brand image was considered emotionally dated and old-fashioned because it had been around for the past 48 years.

Women in their target age group more than likely had heard of Dove before because Dove was a product they had grown up around. This campaign was also appealing in the marketing arena because it was the first campaign of its kind to be launched. Nivea, L’Oreal, and Garnier had never explored using “real women” of different shapes, sizes, and ages to market their products. These competitors were known for using young, perky, extremely skinny models. Their models fit the stereotypical idea of beauty. The very stereotype that Dove decided to work on breaking.

With Dove’s new campaign they were also able to reach out to the younger generation. Through their “Self-Esteem Fund” they worked with programs that helped girls between the ages of 8 and 17 with eating disorders, body image, and finding their inner beauty. This campaign allowed Dove to broaden their marketing arena and add youth to their fairly dated product. Their work in younger generations served as more competition with their competitors because it focused on women in the same age group as their competitors but their work still focused on breaking the stereotypes and building up the self-esteem of women starting at an early age.

This aspect not only targeted the same age group as Nivea, L’Oreal, and Garnier, but it went above and beyond by expanding into the emotional appeal of these consumers. The product itself was not the highlight of their marketing anymore. They focused more on what the product would do for their consumers. Many of Dove’s competitors have not been around as long as Dove. Though they offer similar products and quality, they do not have the competitive advantage that Dove has. Since the re-launch of their brand, Dove appeals to every age group, ethnicity, and have also expanded into men’s products.

Most importantly, they focus on the emotional appeal of their products for their customers. Unlike their competitors, they have given the marketing arena a change of pace. They are not only marketing to both men and women, they are marketing to a completely different appeal. Identify opportunities in the “societal marketing” arena that Dove may be able to capitalize on. Dove took a risk with their marketing strategy and it was a risk that paid off. They went against what all their competition was doing and what they were previously doing to re-brand their name, and did it successfully.

As the case said, “Our business has been to sell products, not to satisfy customers or cure society’s ills”. But at the same time, Dove figured out that they could sell products while satisfying the human need to feel beautiful. With the success of their newest marketing campaign “Hips Feel Good” Dove has many opportunities where they can use “societal marketing” and capitalize on it. Societal marketing is marketing your product to satisfy the needs and interest of consumers and to the benefit of the overall society.

By dove using societal marketing, they are not marketing just their product and its functions, but are marketing their product in a way that interest and meets consumers’ needs physically and mentally. They are marketing in way that benefits the consumer and society overall and not just their own company. With this form of marketing there are several opportunities Dove can capitalize on such as continuing to focus on marketing to the average woman, as well on reaching the kids and men’s markets. Dove needs to continue to market that every woman is beautiful and that every woman should be proud of who she is.

They need to continue to show that it does not your size, color, or skin that makes you beautiful, but every woman is beautiful and it is your outlook on life that makes you that way. Continuing to focus on this will help Dove continue to head in the right direction of making their brand relevant to all women by reminding and telling all women that they are beautiful. By Dove doing this, they are positioning themselves in women’s minds of being a beautiful product by bringing out the beauty in all women. Second, Dove has the opportunity to market to young kids.

In today’s world, kids are taught that being beautiful is all about looking like professional model. They are taught that you must be skinny, have perfect skin, be a certain race, etc. … in order to be perceived as beautiful or have opportunities that beautiful people have. Dove has the opportunity to show children that everyone is beautiful and a person’s attitude help makes them that way. They can create a view that being beautiful comes from one’s outlook on life and that what they have been taught as a kid is not the only definition of beauty but just a small one.

With the success of their campaign, Dove has the opportunity to take the same idea of showing that all women are beautiful to showing that all men are handsome. Dove has opened the door to show normal men of all shapes, sizes, and colors of being happy with whom they are and being handsome. They can again show that it does not matter what you may look like on the outside but it is the inside and your attitude that makes you handsome. There are many men who are not fit and tall like most men used in cosmetic commercials but using an average man can appeal to everyone watching, showing that they too are a handsome man.

These opportunities would allow Dove to reach not only women, but children and men. There is a large market for all three markets and reaching them will a similar campaign that they have already launched would make everyone feel as if they were unique and beautiful or handsome. This would make all people regardless of their social status, size, race, or background feel as if they were special and beautiful and handsome and looked at positively. This would allow these consumers see themselves in a better manner and associate that to the brand of Dove.

They would see Dove as a company that brought out the best in them and helped them feel like everyone wants to feel, beautiful or handsome. Offer suggestions for the second phase of the re-launch that focuses on consumer communications and promotion. After analyzing this case there are two main recommendations that we think dove should focus on the second phase of the re-launch. The two things are marketing towards the younger generations, specifically women, and marketing towards men. Both of these new markets will help focus on consumer communications and promotions.

Right now Dove focuses on middle aged to older women and making them feel beautiful. Now that they have implemented their campaign of making the middle-aged women feeling beautiful, Dove should capture the younger generation so they can build brand loyalty at a younger age. Marketing towards the younger generation will promote beauty and Dove products to younger powerful buyers as well as stir up communication among consumers. The second recommendation is launching a market campaign that compliments the beautifying women to making men feel handsome.

This will promote their products as well as stir up communication about men’s cosmetic products, which is a large market. Not only do women want to feel beautiful and accepted by society, men also desire a feeling of acceptance and feeling handsome. Both these re-launching recommendations will help promote Dove products to individuals that are not the focus of the campaign now. Also, communication among all people will be positive about the brand and about themselves.

All people will see that Dove wants to make everyone realize that they are beautiful or handsome. Using these recommendations will help Dove reach deeper in to a market they do not focus on and build a positive image for their brand by caring about individuals. Conclusion In conclusion, we can see that Dove has moved forward in a positive manner in their marketing re-launch. They have changed their perception of being an outdated brand to a brand that is viewed as new age and positive by promoting the beauty of all women.

In order for Dove to remain differentiated from its competitors, they must continue to offer value to their customers different than their competitors or better than them. Dove also has a couple opportunities they can act on in expanding their campaign to reach a larger group of people. These opportunities could be a great area to look in to for the second re-launch of Dove’s marketing campaign. Dove has been successful due to their marketing campaign and the second stage of their campaign can help further Dove to becoming more successful and an industry leader.

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