Not enough brands focus their efforts on trying to truly understand their audience. However, we're seeing a welcome shift in the marketing industry towards putting customers first. Consumers want brands to be authentic, to focus on their needs and to understand them as individuals. One way to do this, is to look at the diversity around your brand and how you can use that information to communicate with relevance and purpose.
Here are 3 examples of marketing campaigns aimed at changing customer perception and embracing diversity:
Beauty brand L’Oréal Paris made a bold statement last year, by embracing diversity and reaching out to a wider market. As part of its ongoing “True Match” campaign, the brand targeted men with its products for the first time. L’Oréal realised that consumer trends change, as does the brand's personas, so it shifted the brand strategy to demonstrate inclusiveness of males wearing make-up.
L’Oréal chose male beauty blogger and influencer “The Plastic Boy” as a brand ambassador to help drive its campaign and change the customer perception of L’Oréal, and the make-up industry too as a female-only market. It brought another sector of the marketing into play for L’Oreal, got people talking and raised enough eyebrows (pardon the phrase) to refresh brand perception. See the video below:
This was part of an over-arching marketing strategy to embrace diversity and L’Oréal has also changed its iconic slogan, “Because you’re worth it” to “We are all worth it”, for the rest of 2017.
Skincare specialists Dove caused a buzz on social media recently with their “personalised” body shape bottles – in some cases feeling the wrath of cynical social users in the Twittersphere. Not all marketers were impressed either, with some women labelling the bottles gimmicky. But beyond the meme mockery, there was some positivity around Dove’s continued “Real Beauty” brand message drive to embrace diversity.
Dove created a limited addition range of body wash bottles resembling varying body shapes. The gist of the message being that it doesn’t matter about the size and shape of your body, you should be proud – not ashamed – as we’re all unique and beautiful in our own individual way. In theory, it's a nice empowering soundbite, a clever marketing idea and good way to enhance the brand’s reputation. See the video below:
Leslie Golts, marketing manager at Unilever Canada (Dove’s parent company) said of the campaign: “The intent of the limited-edition bottles was to symbolically represent the fact that beauty comes in many shapes and sizes.”
However, some critics felt it actually did the opposite and encouraged pigeonholing people, according to the way they look. Whatever your opinion, the outcome has been large-scale awareness for Dove and for diversity.
This Girl Can
Not so much a brand campaign but a government-backed awareness programme, This Girl Can is a campaign aimed at gettin more women into sports, whatever their age, shape or size.
Primarily driven by inspirational TV ads, the This Girl Can campaign, from Sport England, also built good traction across social media channels. The visuals depict all manner of women doing various sports and energetic routines, but not in the traditional image of poster-girl female athletes, such as Maria Sharapova or Jessica Ennis-Hill. The women featured were deliberately “normal”, perhaps your “everywoman”, and were caught in not-so-glamorous poses.
The images alone wouldn’t have worked, but it was the combination of the visuals with the inspiring and fun captions that really struck a chord and created impact. Here are a few examples of the creative below:
The visuals are evocative and the captions are empathetic, memorable and sharable. The diversity-based message helped to get 1.6 million more women taking part in sport and exercising over the course of the campaign's first wave. Another wave has recently hit in 2017 and we hope it continues to inspire women of all types to keep fit and enjoy sport without being self-conscious. The campaign currently boasts almost 500k followers across Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. Here's This Girl Can's 2017 video below:
Consumers want to be treated as individuals, not numbers, so understanding what makes your customer tick is crucial. Embracing the diversity of your audience will help you connect with customers, meet their expectations and keep them loyal to your brand.
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