Villing & Company

Gillette Needs to Sharpen Up Their Advertising

Gillette. The best a man can get. The fact that I remember that tagline shows that Gillette has been a quality advertiser over the years. Through quality products, memorable messages and some of the most famous faces in sports, Gillette has become a giant in the razor industry – maybe THE giant. However, a few years ago, Dollar Shave Club entered the picture. Through their creative ads targeted at young men looking to save money on razors, they began to chip away at Gillette. They must be doing something right, because now some of Gillette’s recent advertising is seemingly aimed at the upstart. They’ve now branded themselves as the “Gillette Shave Club” and are focusing on the savings that come from joining them versus the “other shave club.” On the surface, it seems like good strategy. But a closer look, I think, reveals the exact opposite. Take this Facebook post from back in June, for instance.


We were as surprised as you that our best blades can save you up to 50% compared to that other shave club. Learn more or join the Gillette Shave Club today:

Posted by Gillette on Wednesday, June 3, 2015

“We were as surprised as you…” Does this confuse anyone else, or is it just me? If the strategy here is to highlight Gillette’s savings, why effectively tell everyone that the common expectation for Gillette’s blades is that they are overpriced compared to competition? If I’m Dollar Shave Club, I have to feel like the winner in this. Gillette, THE Gillette, is targeting one of their branding and advertising campaigns at little old me. That means I must be doing something right. Honestly, if I’m going to go out and buy Gillette razors and blades, it’s going to be because they really are the best. Yes, I might pay a little more, but they will perform better than the cheaper alternative. Obviously, Gillette did research and much thought went into these ads. Hopefully it pays off for them. But I was confused as to why the market leader would step down into a scrum with “the other shave club” and, in effect, say that even they were surprised their product was better than that of their competitors. Maybe they should just go back to telling men that Gillette is the best that they can get.

Filed Under: advertising

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