Dove case study questions

1. What is a brand? Why does Unilever want fewer of them? The Dictionary of Business and Management defines a brand as: ” a name, sign or symbol used to identify items or services of the seller(s) and to differentiate them from goods of competitors.” For example, Dove is recognized as a brand by its name and its logo ” dove”. The dove refers to an image of purity, simplicity and sweetness. Besides having a name, this brand has a personal identification.

The problem that can meet a big group is a loss of identification and control. That’s what happened to Unilever and its 1600 brands. Each of the 1600 brands had a different strategy and positioning. These positioning were not necessarily compatible and Unilever has lost in credibility. Besides it has been difficult for the group to supervise closely each of the brands and their evolution. In 2000 the group decided to adopt a plan on 5 years « Path to Growth” and down to 400 brands. From that day each of the 400 brands strategy has to correspond to the global vision and positioning of the group. Even if the brands are on different sectors, they must refer to the same values.

2. What was Dove’s brand positioning in the 1950’s? At its setting up, Dove is positioned as a cosmetics brand destined to men, women or children wishing to use a soap without drying the skin. This is a soap that has two virtues: cleaning and moisturizing. The brand is based on the experiences of soldiers to give credibility to their products. The moisturizing and cleaning virtues are not a pure invention, the soldiers tested them during the Second World War.

3. What is Dove’s positioning in 2007? How did they transform their brand? In 2007, the brand decided to give to women the opportunity to create their own Cream Oil Body Wash. It is a great marketing idea. Indeed, women can easier identify themselves to ordinary women and think that if ordinary women have created and like this product, that means that the Dove Cream Oil Body Wash is suitable for everyone.

Moreover, the brand also decided to position its products as up market products. The women on the advertisings are ordinary women so customers can more easily identify to them. It’s a way to reassure women and show them that beauty can be everywhere. Dove wants to talk to all.

4. Evaluate the campaign for Real Beauty. What were the key elements of the campaign? How did they impact the target audience? Which element did you think was the most impactful and why? The campaign for Real Beauty has been innovator.

Dove decided to show through 1: 30min that we often tend to forget what is truth beauty. Women try to identify themselves to the models in magazines, who have been made up and retouched. This is a fictitious beauty. Thus, perfect beauty would not exist because all the women on the covers are made up and retouched. This clip made a real buzz and everybody talked about it. Once uploaded, the advert WAS viewed over 12 million times within the first year. It has increased the brand awareness. The film has also been shown during the Super bowl, the biggest sporting event in the U. S. A, which reached an audience of 500 million. The fallouts have been huge. After this film, sales have increased.

The factor which has the most marked this campaign has been the natural. It was the first time a brand has taken the risk to show a woman without makeup or alterations. Dove wanting to target original women has decided to show one in its campaign.

Most of the women having seen this advertising have confidence more in the brand. ” If a brand doesn’t lie to us on its advertising, it won’t lie to us on its products “

5. How did Unilever organize to do product category management and brand management in Unilever before 2000 and how is it controlled at the time of the case? At the beginning, Unilever has managed its product category management and brand management in a manner similar to Procter and Gamble. Everything was decentralized, each brand managing from its side, its management, marketing, and growth.

From 2000, Unilever began to split responsibility for a brand between two groups: brand Development and brand building. The brand development is in charge of the development of the brands and their innovations. Before launching a new product, the group’s brands have to consult the field. So everything is centralized and it is easier for the group to keep watch on what is happening. The brand building is responsible for the implementation and brand development. This field supervises the growth evolution of the brands, their impact and their communication plans according to the different regions as Europe – Asia, Latin America. By centralizing the group, Unilever has allowed to manage better the brands.