Dove's Foray into Men Care: 'Journey to Comfort' or an Uncomfortable Journey Ahead?

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Case Details:

Case Code : MKTG279
Case Length :14 Pages
Period : 2010-2011
Pub Date : 2011
Teaching Note : Not Available
Organization : Unilever
Industry : Consumer packaged goods; Personal care
Countries : US; Europe

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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Background Note

Unilever was one of the world's leading manufacturers of fast moving consumer goods which included food, home care, personal care, nutrition, and health products. Unilever products were sold in over 180 countries across the globe and used by two billion consumers every day...

Entry into the Male Grooming Market

During the mid-2000s, a change was observed in the customer's attitude toward male grooming with a considerable segment of men adopting personal care products. Most men began to take more of an interest in grooming than they had earlier...

Marketing Management Case Studies | Case Study in Management, Operations, Strategies, Marketing Management, Case Studies

Promotional Strategy

In March 2010, Unilever launched a 12 million marketing campaign to support the launch of the Dove Men+Care range which included outdoor and press advertising, radio, online and public relations, TV advertising, and in-store Point of Sale (POS) for retailers...


As of March 2011, Dove Men+Care was one of the fastest growing male grooming brands in the UK with over 4 million men having purchased the brand's products. It was reported that since its launch in the UK, there were nearly 2.3 million Dove Men+Care shower gel users and almost half of these were completely new to the men's shower category. Owing to the popularity of the brand, key retailers like Sainsbury plc stocked multiple variants of the line in their stores...


One challenge for Dove Men+Care was that Dove was generally perceived as a feminine brand signifying gentleness and purity. It was positioned in the minds of consumers as a brand with a female personality revolving around beauty, said some experts. According to them, the Dove brand was strongly rooted in women and one of the biggest challenges for Unilever would be to make the brand appeal to men as they generally avoided buying products thought of as typically feminine...

Uncomfortable Journey Ahed?

The global market for men's grooming products was projected to exceed US$33.2 billion by 2015. In the UK, the male grooming market was estimated to be worth 250 million with the male shower category growing at over 7% value year on year. According to experts, this was an opportunity for Dove to establish its presence in an unfulfilled male grooming market in the UK...


Exhibit I: Retail Value of Men's Grooming Market (2009)

Exhibit II: Global Men's Grooming Brand Ranking (2009)

Exhibit III: Dove Men+ Care Range of Products

Exhibit IV: Dove Men+Care Ads

Exhibit V: Screenshot of Dove Men+ Care website

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