Women view themselves is changing at a brisk pace. They are confident & desire to be their real self all the time. Regrettably, many brands are not keeping pace with this reality. Result: women are rejecting these insensitive brands resulting in loss of business for them.
Take Victoria’s Secret (VS), arguably the world’s leading lingerie brand for women. For years it created aspirations among women by getting its ‘Angel’ who possessed near perfect figure to model for it. But their latest campaign "Perfect Body”, which is building on this theme, has managed to rile its customers. This campaign features slim models & in the middle is printed – THE PERFECT BODY. VS argues that the text alludes to the model's body which indeed is ‘perfect body’. But customers are in no mood to buy into this argument. In U.K. well over 15,000 signed a petition stating the campaign was a clever advertising ploy alluding to body-shaming. But Victoria's Secret listened only partially to their screams - they changed the wording online to “A Body For Every Body.” I wish they had listened & acted comprehensively upon their customers' plea.
Take Dove, Bobbie Brown. They have understood this new trend & are creating an advertising campaign or product or both to be in sync with this new reality & reaping the rich dividend.
Dove, for instance, runs the ‘Real women. Real Beauty’ campaign which seems to resonate with the new women.
Bobbi Brown has pioneered the natural look. It recognises that today’s women do not wish to apply to make up to appear different than what they really are but wish to project their real self. In fact, they want the makeup to highlight their best features. Bobbi Brown too seems to be doing brisk business.
Is this realisation restricted to women's brand, only?
The answer is 'no'!
Even Axe, a quintessential male brand seems to be jettisoning its iconic ''The Axe Effect" positioning in favour of a new & more relatable theme 'Is it Ok for Guys? which is based on the insight that 'real' guys privately struggle with masculinity & feel anxious about adhering to, and straying from, societal norms.
The brand new positioning aspires “to break the cycle of toxic masculinity by providing guys with resources to live more freely.”
Axe has made a file capturing this insight.
Business lesson for us: A brand should be in sync with the rapid changes in its customers' aspirations. Else it will cease to be relatable, relevant & unsustainable in the long run.