Monday, June 25, 2007

Advertising's 'Evolution'

To see something breaking rules, going against empirical evidence and challenging the present, makes me feel good. The Dove 'Evolution' commercial made me feel good.

In case you've been too busy - or too ignorant - to watch the best television commercial made last year, you can catch it or or

It shows a model been made up and metamorphosed (with help from post-production studio-work) into a face for the billboard. "How did our idea of beauty become so distorted?" it leads you to ponder.

The film was created to expose the manipulation of the female image in the media. The objective was to encourage discussion around the subject of real beauty and lead people to the website.

This is marketing that touches the heart, strikes a cord, makes you connect with millions and makes millions buy what you're saying. And selling.

No doubt, it is a feel good piece of commercial communication. But my feeling good comes from more than this direct effect.

The ad was actually a viral video to bring leads on the brand's web-site.

With not a penny of paid media and in less than a month, "Dove Evolution," a 75-second viral film created by Ogilvy & Mather, Toronto, for the Unilever brand has reaped more than 1.7 million views on YouTube and has gotten significant play on TV talk shows "Ellen" and "The View" as well as on "Entertainment Tonight." It's also brought the biggest-ever traffic spike to, three times more than Dove's Super Bowl ad and resulting publicity last year, according to

By those measures, "Evolution" is the biggest online-buzz generator in the U.S. personal-care and beauty industries, topping this year's effort from Omnicom Group's Tribal DDB on behalf of the Philips Norelco Bodygroom shaver. And that's before the campaign began rolling out to 10 additional countries in Europe, Asia and Latin America last week.

That should explain why it makes me feel good.

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