Name a brand or media channel and Bill Green’s probably worked on and in it. An art director by trade, he’s focused on an overall holistic approach to brand madness that merges the worlds of traditional, digital and social – whatever it takes.
Having worked previously with Darryl and Humongo and current AdVerve podcast partner with Angela, he’s currently doing creative strategy and pitch development with BFG in Hilton Head. The ad blog Make The Logo Bigger is about his experiences in the world of advertising and beyond.
Angela Natividad is a strategist, copywriter and journalist based in Paris. She writes MarketingProfs’ #SocialSkim, is a frequent guest on marketing podcast The Beancast, and co-hosts AdVerve the podcast. Most of her secret thoughts are on her blog, Live and Uncensored.
Darryl Ohrt is a former punk rocker, and Executive Creative Director at Carrot Creative, in NYC. In addition to his posts here, he also writes for Advertising Age’s Small Agency Diary, as the voice of the small guy in a big, big world.
After founding the legendary agency Humongo, he sold out to the man, left the entrepreneurial life and joined Carrot. Now he’s the self proclaimed Prime Minister of Awesome, and he’s tweeting, blogging, and exploring the internets as if it matters. He knows just enough to be dangerous, and is always ready for action.
Dove’s “Camera Shy” by Epoch and Ogilvy won Film Craft Gold in Toiletries at the Cannes Lions this year. It’s charming and light, but packs the big ideological punch Dove shoots for. Crucially, it’s not melodramatic and top-heavy like “Real Beauty Sketches”, which unfortunately eclipsed it this year. Oh, well. Sometimes that happens.
But check it out; if you’re a woman or have women in your life, it’s worth the watch.
Even as a woman, it’s hard to take Dove’s “Real Beauty” marketing efforts seriously. That’s not to say the points it makes aren’t good or that the delivery isn’t provocative; it’s mainly that it isn’t teaching us anything new.
In the same way smokers know they’re actively courting death, most women know they have self-image issues. We’re our own worst enemies, we beat ourselves up over everything, yeah, we’ve heard it. And as much as we’d like for that not to be the case (many of us do work, rigorously and often, to change this about ourselves), it’s an uphill battle, and one we’ll probably fight all our lives as well as in the education of our kids.
Isn’t that what all the freaking-out over Lean In is about? The fight with how we see ourselves, how others see us, and how we think they’re seeing us?
This parody, produced in response to Dove’s “Real Beauty Sketches” (below), tells us another thing we know: a lot of guys have a better self-image than we’d think. (The implication: maybe their self-image is better than they actually deserve.)
The humour is razor-sharp, but if we’re laughing it’s not really at the expense of the dude with the “rapey” eyes. It’s rather at the expense of Dove: with all the syrup they’ve been pouring down our collective female gullets since “Evolution”, we ought to be obese with self-love.
But we’re not: in the same way we knew women in magazines were Photoshopped, we also know that whatever “issues” we have with ourselves won’t be resolved by a sketch that shows us how truly physically cute, “open, friendly and happy”-looking we are. What we face is more complicated, and far more insidious: it hides in the daily grind, in wayward looks, or in a person commenting that our kid could be “better parented”, our shoes better chosen or our jobs, to which we give much, better appreciated.
I get that Dove can’t tackle all this. It’s selling soap, facewash and natural beauty. But maybe that’s the irritating thing about “Real Beauty”: if you truly buy into it, you’re then invited to buy into Dove’s personal care products, which are all about as natural and lovingly-made as your standard-issue Herbal Essences or Garnier Fructis. It’s invested balls-deep in getting us to feel better about our natural selves so we can slather our skin with their soap, which in the end boasts no merits better than whatever it is we’re buying now.
That’s its solution: feel better, love yourself more, buy Dove, love yourself more, feel better. And it’s a really crappy solution.
It’s not the quality of the marketing we’re bored with; it’s the disingenuousness. Which is why the only thing we look forward to about the somber and boringly self-serious “Real Beauty” campaign are its inevitable kneecap-slashing parodies.