Dove targets older women

By Simon Pitman

- Last updated on GMT

First of all Unilever's Dove brand was used to target everyday
women of all shapes, sizes and ages. Now the company is fine-tuning
its marketing campaign to tap into the 50-plus age group.

The move falls in line with the much-heralded potential consumer power of the graying baby boomer generation - a group that, particularly in the US, has never had so much spending power.

Unilever says that its latest Dove marketing campain will tap into the older female consumers' perception that older women are largely ignored by the media.

But despite this perception, all of the leading cosmetic companies are targeting older consumers with color cosmetics, oral care, skin care, anti-aging and hair care products specifically aimed at the older consumer.

And now Unilever is getting in on the act.

Industry experts have countered that women in the 50-age plus category are prime targets for the fast-growing skin care anti-aging market, as well as the cosmeceutical and nutraceutical markets.

As well as increased spending power, this generation of older consumers want to maintain healthy and active lifestyles, a choice that extends to maintaining youthful appearances.

In response to this skin care and make-up lines are now frequently being marketed towards older women.

This fact has been evinced by the world's leading cosmetic company, L'Oreal, recently announcing the sponsorship of new lines by leading stars Jane Fonda and Diane Keaton, both in their sixties.

Now Unilever is getting in on the act, with a launch that claims, "For the first time, a brand is talking to women about aging in a positive tone".

The company says that as part of its much talked about Campaign for Real Beauty, the next stage of the campaign will feature a pro-age theme.

"Designed to expose what our anti-aging society has been hiding, pro-age celebrates women 50+ by showing their honest, real beauty."

The global campaign is being initiated using photographer Annie Leibovitz and promises to feature 'real' older women, complete with age spots, curves and grey hair.

"Dove seeks to create an attitudinal change in the anti-aging category -- from negative and fear-driven to affirmative and hope-driven," said Kathy O'Brien, Dove marketing director.

Unilever stresses that the campaign marks a departure from the elevated claims of anti-aging products, instead emphasizing how its new line of 'pro-age' products can help enhance the appearance of older women, rather than actually claiming to make the physical changes made by many anti-aging products.

The pro-age collection features a hand cream, beauty body lotion, body cream oil and a neck and chest serum, with each product said to be specifically formulated to meet the needs of women in this age group.

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