Now it's Greenpeace's turn to attack the Dove ~ Brand Mix

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Now it's Greenpeace's turn to attack the Dove

It's becoming quite the year for the brand managers of Dove. Suddenly their award-winning "Campaign for Real Beauty" is being attacked from all sides. First there were accusations of hypocrisy (see links below) and now Greenpeace is holding up Dove as the poster child for the destruction of Indonesian rain forests:

This time it looks pretty clear that Dove is just a victim of its own success. Its campaign is so well known and iconic that Greenpeace has just latched onto it, leech-like, to make its point. It could have been any one of hundreds of other companies that are also using palm oil for their products.

Ironically, back when I was a brand manager on Coffee-mate, we ran into some political fall-out when we stopped using tropical oils. We had reacted to health concerns about the fat content of these oils and had plastered our reformulated product with garish "No Tropical Oil" stickers. We got the news from corporate that this promotion was not appreciated by palm oil exporters (i.e. Indonesia) and could we please think about taking these stickers off.

Sometimes, you just can't win.

Earlier Posts:
1) Don't axe my Dove
2) More on axing the dove
3) The Dove vs. the Axe continued

(Video via Scott White at Brand Identity Guru)

UPDATE (May 2nd): Score one for Greenpeace. Unilever has announced that it will now only buy palm oil only from sustainable palm-oil suppliers (those who can prove they haven't cut down forests.) The Greenpeace ad above has been watched more than 250,000 times on As of right now, Greenpeace hasn't taken it down.

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