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Harry Lang: Great brand-building doesn’t have to break the bank

Marketing Week 04 Feb 2019 07:31

A few weeks ago, global shaving behemoth Gillette took a considerable chunk of its $1bn annual marketing budget and decided to gamble with it. In an effort to capitalise on the #MeToo movement its new brand ad challenged menkind to be the best that they can be.

In betting terms, it was more backing an outsider at Ascot than a 50:50 shot on the roulette table and, as a result, Gillette’s horse limped home to considerable jeers from the grandstands.

The ad has prompted ridicule (and even threats of boycotting) by men offended by the simplistic and even patronising way in which the ad pigeonholes them as a universal imbecile, incapable of acting in a manner acceptable in the modern age. Conversely, others have praised a brand of Gillette’s stature (and by association, parent company Procter & Gamble) for outing the outdated behaviours of men and challenging us testicle-wielding sapiens to dump our historical whimsy and find our spiritual and behavioural home in the modern age.

In the 1 minute 48 second full version, director Kim Gehrig takes a big bag of derogatory clichés and hurls them like errant darts in the general direction of the male razor buying public in an effort to shame us, collectively and unequivocally, into changing the bad things that we as a sex are all – every one of us – apparently guilty of.

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GilletteGilletteBrand ArchitectsKim GehrigUK
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