Gillette “Boys will be Boys” Campaign – Can one word change thinking + shift a brand message?

Jan 30, 2019


A video popped up into my feed.

It was something about men being the best they could be.

Well, I am raising a son, so I clicked.

and I was hooked straight into an emotive clip – that wasn’t designed to just sell a product… this one was geared to make us think.

Seen the ad?


After reflecting on what I’d just seen [and pressing “share”, naturally], my consumer brain took a backseat + the business brain kicked in.

It’s a pretty clever way to “sell without selling” Gillette!

Find a cause you feel strongly about, something your ideal clients will also appreciate… and by talking about it – your clients will talk about it too [thus improving the virality – is that a word], the “like” factor [because your clients feel they “belong”], and ultimately… brand reach and trust. 

and then I got to thinking about the impact this one word shift will have on the organisation.

Yes, I get that it’s a campaign, and not a tagline.

But the underlying message of what’s important to them has shifted.

Message before: The best a man can get
Message now: The best a man can BE

The marketing guys have realised the shift from intrinsic focus on one’s own wellbeing, to the need to focus on making a more meaningful impact in the world.

One word… can spark a whole new direction + thought process!

Does that make you gasp?

When crafting your brand messaging… the words you use – tell your clients what’s most important to you, what you do, what you’re about.

So what do the “gillette guys” have to say about this campaign:

“I want to challenge people just to take a minute and have that ‘moment in the mirror’. For guys, this might even be when you’re shaving in the morning, ask yourself, ‘Are my actions what I want them to be? When people are watching me, what am I saying? Am I doing the things that really reflect me at my best?’ If guys reflect on that, we think that will have a more positive impact on society.” – Damon Jones, Vice President, Global Communications and Advocacy at Procter and Gamble

What’s your take on their new direction?
Share in the comments below…

x Emma

Ps… if you’re worried that your messaging is going to shave away a bunch of clients… Why don’t we set up a virtual coffee – it’s a no pressure 25min chat to see whether I can help you?

About the Author

Emma is the Chief Coffee Drinker here at FreshSage. With over a decade in branding + another decade in corporate business - she's always balancing the creative with business strategy + goals. She believes everyone has a purpose + calling, and secretly loves helping her clients find theirs. When she's not building brand experiences, she's spending time with her High-school sweetheart + kidlet, tinkering in her veg garden, painting an abstract, and enjoying vino with friends.

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