As a prominent brand in the beauty industry, Dove plays a part in gender presentations in the media. So, they made a case study to show how they break the negativity chain that women encounter in the media. When media uses images that don’t reflect society, images that portraits women as objects, they dictate unrealistic ideals.
The video quotes:
When 68% of all women can’t identify themselves with the images they see in advertising, it’s time for change. By hacking the industry from the inside, we can hack women’s self image. This is called image_hack.
When you do a search for “beautiful woman” on stock sites, this is the result you get:
… where in fact, you should get:
and the brand decides to change that.
Using their words, they found a back door to one of the biggest stock sites in the world, Shutterstock, which allows them to upload any image and tag it as they please. Using this to their benefit, they completely changed certain search results like “beautiful woman”, to results of real women that they deem fitting.
Furthermore, Dove teamed up with 5 award-winning advertising photographers and created a large amount of non-stereotypical pictures of women, and then uploaded them to the website. Soon photographers from all over the world joined the cause and in weeks, thousands of new non-stereotypical pictures were uploaded to the site; completely changing the content on the site.
According to Dove, the job was still not done. They needed other brands to join the mission too. So they ran ads that targeted advertisers and agencies, encouraging them to take part in the change.
Advertisers in agencies from all over the country joined the initiative by running ads using the pictures that Dove uploaded and soon, the pictures were everywhere. That is how the brand was able to completely change the media landscape and have any brand that used these pictures become an ambassador for Dove’s message.
So far, the image hack project has made the following impact: 1729 images are downloaded, 42 brands have joined the mission and the pictures received 40 million media impressions.
So, this is how change happens, like a digital revolution. This is one of the greatest marketing projects ever seen!