Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Reflections on My Reflection

When you look in the mirror, do you like what you see?

It’s one of the things I love to watch my Hawklets do – they get excited to see themselves in the mirror. They stick out their tongues. They smile. They point. They’ve never done anything any differently when they gaze at their reflections but stop for a minute, linger and flirt with themselves. They have absolutely no reason to want to change anything in that vision bouncing back to them. But what about the rest of us? At some point we lose this love affair with our reflections. We succumb to marketing messages that we need this in order to be a better wife, mother, person. We need that to look better, dress better, spend more, eat less. We need to change. We are not good enough.

I don’t want these messages polluting my Hawklets’ love affair with themselves.

Over the past few years, Dove has done a ground-breaking job attempting to make us all feel better about what we’ve got in a way that sells soap. Remember when sex sold? You know, the age-old marketing ploy that robbed you of your self-esteem? Your desire to gaze into the mirror and smile back? It’s not a new campaign, but the genius inside the reverse psychology Dove packaged up into a marketing powerhouse continues to wow me.

When asked, moms have actually named Dove as the no. 1 brand for health. For health? For health. This is not a brand prescribed by doctors. Unless you’re battling chronic dirt, soap can’t cure what ails you. Yes, hand-washing is important in germ fighting, but we’re talking about soap…shampoo…lotion…these things are not meant to remedy the ‘sick.’ But Dove is the perfect example that savvy marketing and brand positioning can elevate you to the perception that you are about more than being clean, smelling good, and accomplishing a daily ritual. Savvy marketing can make moms think you provide them with the balance for which they are constantly searching. That you can make them emotionally feel something. That you offer heightened self esteem. That you offer an escape from pressures to be perfect. These are heady issues. And this is soap.


Dove, on behalf of moms everywhere who delight in seeing their kids love the little people who look back at them from inside the mirror, thank you and keep it up.

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