Dove’s ‘Patches’ Advert Has Caused a Customer Backlash

In Customer Engagement, Featured on App, Featured Videos by Vaughn Highfield

Dove needs to patch up its customer relationship

As part of Dove’s ‘Real Beauty’ campaign that it’s been running for years, the Uniliver-owned beauty company created a new advert that’s gained a fair bit of backlash from customers and the internet’s vocal minority. Entitled ‘Patches’, the newest advert sees a group of women making use of a beauty patch. It’s not going to cosmetically change them as a person, but instead it’s designed to alter how they think about their appearance, helping them come to terms with the aspects of their body that they dislike.

Spoiler: it’s actually a placebo.

That’s right, the patch contains nothing and it’s all been done to make these women realise the real beauty inside them all.

It’s a clever touch from Dove, and the campaign has had more views than the immensely popular ‘Real Beauty Sketches‘ advert released around a year or so ago. But it’s not all been positive.

Many customers feel that due to the women’s calm reactions that the entire thing was a façade, they were in fact paid actresses. Even The New York Times gets on board that bandwagon, claiming that they should have really made one of the women outraged at being conned.

Others seem to criticise Dove for using the advert and real beauty campaign as a way to market products – which I find quite a bizarre argument to make.

It’s interesting to see that, so far, this advert has damaged Dove’s reputation, as YouGov has reported that there’s been a “distinct” down trend of Dove’s reputation after ‘Patches’ aired. Although, they did point out that it wasn’t a dramatic down trend at all.

It’ll be interesting to see how Dove turn this around, or prove that the women involved weren’t actresses, otherwise it looks like they may have undermined the intelligence of their key market.