Well.dove mencare

I have been slightly paying attention to the new Dove men care marketing effort and then I saw an excellent television commercial featuring Jay Bilas and I became fully invested in thinking about it.


The television commercial:

Jay Bilas Big Dance: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5xOwh0IxurA


<note: the following link takes you to all videos including the Dwayne Wade kids one which is also nice: http://www.dovemencare.com/Videos/>


I won’t dissect the Jay Bilas execution. It is charming, topical and well executed.


About the actual Dove Mencare line.

Dove® Men+CareTM Face Range is a full line of skin care developed specifically for men’s skin. Offering a variety of solutions that tackle men’s most common concerns – skin dryness, sensitivity, blocked pores and oily skin. The regimen provides skin care in three steps – Cleanse, Shave and Finish – to fit into any man’s grooming routine.


I admit.

I think some of this is marketing bullshit <trying to create a distinction between men and women needs> … for example … Cleanse with Care: So if you shouldn’t use soap on your face what should you use? Soap dries, Dove Men+Care doesn’t.



How is that different from a woman’s face needs? <maybe I am showing my true Neanderthal because I truly cannot answer that question>.

Seems like a woman wouldn’t want soap that “dries” if men would want it.

Specifically for men’s skin? Yeah. Whatever.



The real reason I elected to write about this.


Once I became invested in thinking about it … well … I admit.

I have mixed feelings about a men’s line of products from Dove.

dove women beautyDove is, has been, and will always be … a female brand. A brand, with products, owned by woman-kind.


I am sure there are gobs of research showing that men have secretly been using Dove because <1> it works, <2> it smells good, and <3> men don’t give a shit and will use whatever is handy, i.e., whatever the woman put in the soap dish.

And I am sure there is also gobs of research showing that “empowering the male shopper to make unique purchases fulfills the subconscious self esteem” <yup … while I made this one up … you see that crap in research presentations >.

And I am absolutely sure there were gobs of analytics showing the potential sales on a line “specifically designed for men.”

But I still have mixed feelings … for one simple reason.

Well … Dove is, has been, and always will be … a female brand.



The folks at Dove <I am assuming they hired some men because women could never figure this out> have done a spectacular job clearly delineating what is for Men and what is not.

They are executing this business idea flawlessly.

And I could probably do a gangbuster presentation just using what I see from the outside looking in discussing the merits of what they are doing.


Well … Dove is, has been, and always will be … a female brand.


The lure of the almighty dollar can convince you to do a lot of things in the world of business and marketing <and absurd acts of brand destruction>. And that same lure can convince you to isolate research data to prove your point.

That lure can also make you dance on the head of a pin to make your decision look clear cut.


This is not a clear cut decision.

I am not suggesting it is a bad decision … nor am I suggesting that in the end it won’t look like a damn good decision.

But I am suggesting it is a risky decision.

And I am also betting it is a decision that had the head person of the existing Dove product line fuming <and tearing hair out and lots of gnashing of teeth> because there is risk <and the existing Dove line was probably quite fat, dumb & happy, i.e., very profitable>.


What I truly like about thinking about this?

I am not sure I would have had the kahones to do this.

And I love that.


Despite all the research factoids I threw out at you <that I made up … but am almost 99% sure are correct> I am not sure I would have borrowed the Dove equity and brought it into the Men’s category. Not because I don’t think men wouldn’t make the leap <for god’s sake … they have been slathering their woman’s Dove all over their bodies for years and they haven’t grown a vagina yet> but because I wouldn’t be sure women wouldn’t feel like they have been sold out by Dove.


Dove is theirs, has been, and will always be … oops … well … maybe not always.


It was okay when men stole it <in fact there is some satisfaction in this slightly guilty behavior> but now they can have their own Dove.

Sound silly?


Remember. Companies do not make a brand. The users do. They are fragile fickle things those users.

Someone at Dove is banking on fickleness landing in their camp.dove sapient-2011

Someone at Dove is banking on this decision not neutering the brand.

I have one word for ya.


Someone at Dove has ‘em.

I love it.

Written by Bruce