- Gillette is again embracing gender as a marketing campaign theme, with a #MyBestSelf extension that includes a short video of a transgender teen who is being taught to shave by his father. The video features the closing message, "Whenever, however it happens — your first shave is special."
- In the video, Samson talks about being "at the point where I'm able to shave," as his father looks on and guides his shaving. Samson adds that it's not just himself transitioning, but "it's everybody around me."
- Previously, Gillette featured transgender activist Jazz Jennings in a #MySkinMyWay campaign for Gillette Venus for women.
With this latest campaign, Procter & Gamble's Gillette continues to explore and redefine the idea of masculinity. Earlier this year, the "We Believe" campaign expanded the brand's decades-old "The Best a Man Can Get" message into "The Best Men Can Be," nodding to the #MeToo movement, tackling toxic masculinity and sparking social media outcry. By featuring a transgender teen in the #MyBestSelf initiative, the company continues to demonstrate its commitment to diversity and inclusivity in its marketing.
Meanwhile, the competition to become the gender-aware razor brand is heating up. Last year, Gillette competitor Schick Hydro launched a "healthy masculinity" campaign, and direct-to-consumer razor startup Harry's created a short video that looked at the definition of a man. Such cause-driven campaigns can help to distinguish a brand from competitors' dated product-driven advertising, and often go over well with younger consumers, providing an emotional bond that can last long enough to drive longer-term loyalty.
Such campaigns are amplified by mentions on social media and news sites, best exemplified by the 1.1 million mentions generated by Gillette's "We Believe" ad within 24 hours of its launch in January — a 214% increase over the previous 24 hours. Nearly 80% of respondents liked the ad, 77% said it made them hopeful about the future, almost 60% said they expected to remember the ad in three or four months and 34% said it made them want to buy Gillette products, according to a Toluna Insights survey.
Marc Pritchard, chief brand officer of Gillette's parent company Procter & Gamble, has called to reinvent the digital ad space, partially by improving diverse portrayals of consumers in the company's advertising. With that in mind, the company has taken a leading position on social issues relating to women, such as its sponsorship in April of two women-focused documentaries, the promotion of female directors in ads, the co-hosting of the first #SheIsEqualSummit on gender equality in marketing and the launch of a search tool designed to provide less gender-biased results.