For years, Dove’s brand mission has been promoting “real beauty” and encouraging women to be confident and love the way they look, no matter how they look. The brand discovered that the social media platform Snapchat was having a negative effect on women’s self-esteem, causing them to use lenses and filters to conform to mainstream ideals of beauty. For 24 hours, Dove Canada “hacked” Snapchat, and every time someone tried to use the platform’s most-popular lens for beauty shots, the filter faded away as they were encouraged by brand messaging to let their natural beauty show.
Objective and Context:
The goal of the campaign was to reassert Dove’s pledge to women and beauty in a refreshing way for the brand’s 60th anniversary. The brand’s challenge was how to drive awareness of Dove’s commitment to women in a way that created an emotional connection and encouraged discussion.
Dove has long stood for real beauty, and encourages women to realize their beauty through high-quality products. One of the brand’s values is that beauty should be a source of confidence, not anxiety. Dove’s Real Beauty Pledge reiterated its commitment, as the brand promised to only use “real” women (not models) in its advertising, never to retouch or airbrush its ads, and to build young women’s confidence through the Dove Self-Esteem Project.
Research revealed that Snapchat was negatively affecting women's self-esteem, and Dove wanted to take actions to change that. The strategy was to have Snapchat disable its most-used product, the filters and lenses people often used to make themselves align better with the mainstream ideals of beauty. The brand partnered with influencers who showed their real beauty sans lenses and encouraged their followers to do the same.
Overall Campaign Execution:
For 24 hours, users who interacted with the Snapchat lens most commonly used for beauty shots were presented with a message from Dove: “Let Real Beauty Shine.” As the filter faded away, revealing people’s natural beauty, the Dove logo and message appeared. For 24 hours, Dove Canada reminded people to let their Real Beauty shine. Paid support behind influencers’ social posts promoting the filter to extend reach.
The entire marketing strategy was around being the first brand in Canada to hack Snapchat's most popular lens.
Dove’s Snapchat execution spread the message of the brand’s commitment to its Real Beauty pledge. Leveraging one of the most popular social platforms, Dove Canada delivered the Real Beauty message in a simple, engaging way.
In 24 hours, the Dove “Let Real Beauty Shine” lens had more than four million uses, 2.4 times more than the average lens. More than 2.2 million Snapchat users engaged the lens, and this selfie-loving audience played with the lens for more than 17 seconds on average, for a total of 644,000 minutes of engagement. The campaign generated more than 1.7 million impressions through direct Snap messages and stories.