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« The Silent Generation Revisited | Main | We Know Less about Our Motivations than Consumer Research Commonly Supposes »

May 14, 2008


Michele Miller

David - I, too, will be heartbroken if all of this news about Dove turns out to be true. I'm just waiting for the dust to settle before making a statement, mostly because all of this is based on one remark made by the subject of The New Yorker piece.

I'd like to know exactly which campaigns he worked on, and exactly what he means by doing a lot of retouching. If, as Ogilvy stated, it's about a hair out of place or minor lighting, then I'm cool with it. But if it turns out to be as major as is being claimed, then I'll be the first to put ketchup on my crow before eating it.


Mike Santoro

I've heard that the retouching was just to clear dust and other small touchups to the photo, so we should hold judgement until we figure out what happened.

But even if it turns out these models were in some way manipulated, does it hurt what they were doing? I get the fun in saying that these women "weren't real", but isn't it still a big deal that they didn't go with the typical thin glamour model?

I'd argue that while it definetely hurts the credibility of the campaign, that the message still remains and the importance of using real women still resonates.

Gay Gooen

Too sad, AND too real -- I think this happens all the time. As a OD consultant who believes in the value of truth in marketing, I am not at all surprised. It's just another example of using women to exploit the marketing/advertising process in ways that are inappropriate and deceitful. If this is true, let's mainstream it so people know the truth, and choose not to patronize Dove products.

A Doughy Real Woman

I agree with Miller's comments. Hold off on the Power Point changes, David until the unretouched dust settles.

Dove, Dangin, and Leibowitz all state that Dangin was not involved in the "Real Beauty" campaign, but in an earlier campaign. It seems to me that the "New Yorker" used their own "blur tool" to get create a different image for, go figure, of all things, perhaps their own marketing purposes?

How often has the media been known to distort comments? Certainly with the same frequency that visual images are "enhanced." I cannot think of a single publication that does not practice "retouching" of words to sell a story.

The "real" picture may be as simple as this: Controversy sells better than plain, ordinary facts; word retouchers, "heal thyself!"


Wow - This is almost like the Coke Zero Blog fakery or some such - It would have been interesting if Dove had left well enough alone - I would have had a lot more respect for the campaign. It seems cheapened a bit now.

the marketing mix

very informative keep on writing

Marney Lewis

Very Interesting Post, Very sad if it is true with Dove unfortunatly, Great use of media, makes things more personal. Thanks , and keep up the good work.


Whether the images were authentic or not, I think the Dove campaign was a step (as small as it might be) in the right direction. Similarly, the campaign was a bold but ultimately successful example of non-traditional marketing.

Joel "Cheaters Guide to Marketing" Gutierrez

I like the fact that dove is using reverse psychology against the other marketing out there...they show the truth vs. what's made up.

I have a friend with a 16 year old daughter who cakes the makeup on and I honestly think her acne problem stems from all that freaking makeup!

Seriously, people just need to learn that beauty is in the heart...not the outside...

The comments to this entry are closed.

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