How Brand Campaigns are Empowering Women

On International Women’s Day, we thought it suitable to reflect on some of our favourite brands who feature empowering women at the heart of their campaigns. 

Dove – Real Beauty

Dove celebrates 60 years with real beauties in their latest ad campaign.

The brand is known for using ‘real women’ to promote their products and has earned their status as an authentic and responsible advertising name. Dove were one of the first, if not the first, to champion body confidence back in 2004 with the launch of their ‘Real Beauty’ campaign.

In their latest campaign, they’re continuing to fight for equality for all women and have cast 32 real women from 15 different countries and ethnicities, who range from ages 11-71.

But the most important part to empowering women and championing body confidence is publishing campaigns that are 100% untouched. They are not photoshopped. Each of the woman featured were able to select which of her images they wanted published as well, giving them the control of how they’d be seen in the media. 

In Dove’s recent survey, results showed that 71% of women and 67% of girls wished that the media did a better job of portraying them and the brand is certainly striving to change this and improve a women’s confidence. 

There’s still room for improvement but it’s a huge leap from the research that sparked the original campaign in 2004, where only 2% of women* considered themselves beautiful. 

*from a study of 3000 from 10 countries

Nike – Dream Crazier

“If we show emotion, we’re called dramatic. If we want to play against men, we’re nuts. And if we dream of equal opportunity, delusional.”

Nike have just released their ‘Dream Crazier’ campaign, featuring one of the most iconic female personalities in sport, Serena Williams, has one very clear message that it’s the crazy dreams that are worth chasing, pushing for and achieving. It’s a powerful ad and no doubt shows just how strong women can be when they believe in themselves. 

Sport England – This Girl Can

Sport England have been supporting female empowerment through their ‘This Girl Can” campaign since 2015. Their key objective is be inclusive and their most recent ads target women from lower incomes to inspire girls to move and be physically active no matter what they have available to them. Since the launch of the campaign, 3 million women have been inspired to get more active and numbers are growing all the time. 

By including  women from all social backgrounds, ethnicities and ages within the campaign it breaks down the stereotypes of who can and can’t play sport and encourages everyone to fit sport into your life in any way no matter what.

Always – Like A Girl

Always wanted to target 16-24 year olds but studies showed that women tend to stay loyal to one company. So their challenge was to  find a way to reconnect with the younger audience.

They knew product communication alone was simply not enough and as a sanitary pad company, they faced challenges with customer engagement both online and offline. Their solution? Like a girl.

The ‘feminine products’  brand have always been about making women feel more confident, and after carrying out research into the self-confidence of women found a significant drop in confidence when puberty hits. They found this was because of gender stereotypes that start to come into play during puberty. Young adolescents start to learn what it means to be a girl and the differences in gender. 

To challenge these stereotypes, Always showed young people of different, ages and backgrounds describing what they thought it meant to ‘be a girl’. The results were incredible. See the video below. It just shows it’s only society that puts these things into our heads.

Fearless Girl – McCann

McCann changed everything when they added the ‘Fearless Girl’ onto the streets of New York. They placed her opposite the famous Charging Bull. It was a stunt for women’s day but has remained ever since. It was also part of a campaign to inform people that companies with women in top positions perform better financially. It was meant to be up for at least a week, however, was there for over a year and now has a permanent place near the New York Stock Exchange.