3 Game-Changing Brands Transforming the Idea of Influence and Making a Lasting, Positive Impact
Photo by Lindie Wilton
Beauty and fashion brands are shifting towards inclusivity in their advertisements globally. This shift in focus transitioned from the picture perfect to the ordinary girl has positively influenced brands and stores in shopper retention, customer gain, and above all (for businesses at least), monetary and financial success. Here are three brands embracing inclusivity!
This popular brand, owned by American Eagle Outfitters, has embraced the beauty in everyone, and it shows financially. The store interior features several mirrors throughout, all placed to remind the shopper that they are beautiful. Aerie also stopped retouching or airbrushing their models for any in-store or mass media campaigns, yet again showing that everyone is beautiful in their own right, no filter needed. In 2018, the brand also quietly launched another few campaign ads, featuring models with various prominent medical devices, such as wheelchairs. This push for inclusivity was in part prompted by the reality that not every woman is a size 00, nor do they have access to filters and PhotoShop when wearing undergarments in active life. To see a normal human used as an advertisement, especially for lingerie, allows the everyday customer to truly envision what the garment is like, as opposed to feeling disheartened when a bra doesn’t make the girl look like the runway model who posed in it. Aerie works on the idea that buying lingerie can be a stressful process, especially for women that compare themselves to an advertisement. By refusing to retouch, women have appreciated their beauty, and it brings more enjoyment to the entire experience. Aerie is on track to become a billion-dollar company and may dethrone other lingerie retail giants due in part to their commitment to emphasising you.
Many people wear some form of makeup, with concealer and foundation standing as a major staple. However, high-end brands don’t offer women of a darker complexion makeup; but to date, there is a larger market of people with different skin tones. Many women did not feel represented in the beauty industry, as their skin tone did not fit into the usual boxes ticked by high-end brands. In 2017, Rihanna launched her makeup line, Fenty Beauty, which delivered on the underserved market and even prompted other brands to do the same. To this day, Fenty products stand out in every high-end makeup store with its vast array of shades that aren’t typically offered by competitors. Financially, Fenty Beauty was able to capitalise on this industry-wide issue and hook customers with its quality and assortment. When diversity is made to appear cool through an influencer, we all win!
Dove was one of the first brands to use inclusive marketing, and they continue to slay the game. In 2017, they unleashed their “Real Beauty Showcase,” which featured 32 women, representing 15 countries, ages 11 to 71, going above and beyond to prove that beauty has no one look. In this campaign, Dove showcased not only different ethnicities but also different ages of beauty. Starting in early 2019 (even now!), Dove will be watermarking all photos they use in ads with a “No Digital Distortion” label, to emphasise real beauty. This marketing tactic started for Dove as a way to highlight the natural properties in their products and everyone’s own body. Since the beginning of general marketing, showing the un-retouched natural beauty has not only become widely accepted – but widely profitable.