Beards were big. And bushy. And that was bad news for Gillette, a brand that had promised the closest, cleanest, most precise shave for years.
To make Gillette relevant again we identified the last possible opportunity to persuade Millennials to consider shaving, the moment they became dads.
Babies communicate through touch.
When your job is selling razors, beards are bad news. And in recent years beards have been everywhere. Among certain groups of younger men, almost everyone has a beard.
Beards mean that less people shave and those who do shave, shave less often. As market leader Gillette takes the biggest hit.
When beards first became cool we were pretty relaxed. They’ll change when they get their first job we thought. Now even the boss has stubble…
We realised that probably the last opportunity to change behaviour was when men become dads. Research shows that the male brain physically changes, putting new dads into a state where they are willing to make a change... for their baby.
But it wasn’t enough simply to repeat Gillette’s performance message. We also needed to change the way Gillette talked to men. We needed to demonstrate that the brand understood there were multiple ways to be a man.
At this point we “borrowed” an insight from just another cubicle at P&G – Pampers. Newborn babies’ only means of communication is via touch. Research by Harvard-University and The Boston Children's Hospital has proven that "Love-Hormones" released after birth and "skin-to-skin" communication help babies' development as they learn to trust their parents.
Clean shaven was better than beards for baby. Our objective was to convince new dads to consider going clean shaven for the first months of fatherhood.
Babies' only means of communication is touch. So our entire communication plan evolved around touch!
The best media is the right message at the right time, told in the right way.
We knew that men were open to change when they became dads, so we had our timing.
We also knew that the benefit of skin to skin was hugely powerful both for their newborns and their relationship. So we had our call to action.
But we also needed a platform and that’s where we needed to promote Gillette’s new view of what it means to be man.
We wouldn’t just target dads – a small part of our total demographic – but use “fatherhood” as a means to portray a richer, more updated and relevant depiction of men. We would celebrate the emotional, caring side of manhood.
Central to our message was touch and our strategy would focus on two key principles:
Firstly, we would highlight new/expecting parents to raise awareness to the importance of "skin to skin" communication and the new meaning of BabyFace.
Second, we would put that skin sensation in their hands and be much more experiential. A unique digital experience would take advantage of the haptic technology that powers touchscreen devices to allow men to feel what it’s like to touch a beard or stubble and contrast that with a smooth-shaven face.
All these messages would involve mums too, delivered at times when they would be watching, ensuring they added additional pressure for their man to “do one little thing” for the baby.
After all, mums make huge sacrifices to give birth.
Until recently brands could only use media to broadcast sensory experiences for the eyes and ears but new technologies are giving rise to the next advertising industry frontier – digital sensory storytelling.
We will distribute tactile experiences literally touching consumers and generating all the emotional engagement that entails.
Objective was to convince new dads that they should consider going clean-shaven at least temporarily, for the first few months of their baby's life.
TV spots scheduled right before the evening news, a space normally used for public-service messages, presented interviews with dads willing to give up anything for their newborn (poker nights, motorcycle, working late) but hesitating when it came to their beards, part of their identity… They needed a good reason… and we gave it to them.
We showed dads what stubble felt like to babies via sensory storytelling. Print ads in leading male magazines used actual sandpaper to bring the experience to life. We also created a unique, first of its kind force-touch haptics technology app, all men had to do was run their finger over the screen to feel actual beard stubble prick as their baby would feel it, add the smooth sensation of foam and shave the beard off to contrast the smoothness of a clean-shaven face with that of stubble.
We went to meet new dads, promoting the BabyFace app at baby-fairs, and at preparation-for-birth courses as well as having a Gillette branded shaving-booth in Israel’s largest maternity-ward.
Instore we launched the first-ever global tie up between Gillette and Pampers, creating a daddy pack that combined diapers and razor.
In another global first, we have also created an online daddy's club by customizing Pampers’ vast information bank. Gillette will now collect, curate and centralize all info related specifically to fatherhood on a dedicated site.
Creative Agency - Adler Chomski Grey Israel
PR- Stern - Ariely - Shahar
Branded Content - Grey Content
Haptics Application - Tanvas
Online content - Blazer Magazine
Events - Promarket