Axe goes for a sophisticated makeover

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Until now, Axe was the chic magnet. You spray on Axe and you got gorgeous girls to bed. Why girls, even angels. The execution varied from the tongue-in-cheek to in-your-face raunchy. In India, when Axe, an international brand targeted at the mass market, offered a polished execution (global ads) combined with the promise it seems to have worked. Many other deodorant brands have tried to emulate this formula of ‘get the girl’ so much so that the format has become predictable.

Axe has gone for a makeover in the US with the launch of a new ad, with an almost 180-degree flip of the main proposition. So its no longer as direct as ‘use Axe and women will find you irresistible’.

Agency: BBH

The idea is based on an insight: all of us have come across our very own ‘Susan Glenn’. The girl who makes you go tongue-tied and lose courage to talk to her. So its adding another layer to the Axe positioning. I liked the approach but since the execution (Keifer Sutherland was a surprise for me) is so different from the Axe we know, it takes a while to sink in. And yes, as one YouTube commenter said, now we know: Jack Bauer does go to the bathroom.

What did you make of the ad? The new positioning? Do comment in.

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  1. I liked it. loved the way they have stuck to the core idea of Axe. Get the girl you want. They have just moved from all the girls to one girl. This shift also gives them more storytelling space… and it moves the category from all macho/geek to a nice space. Probably if they stick to it may become a brand..thats seen by women in a better light. Poor axe wannabe brands just when they thought they cracked a formula to sell deos…

  2. They must have got tired of the rising number of ready to pounce attention seekers filing cases against them claiming usual-no effect!!

    But on a serious note,inbound marketers are doing the unusual these days with their videos.It doesn't have to be related to the product or the service they offer these days.

    Check these videos for sampling:

    Avian :

    Hubspot :

    Who would believe that these companies sell packaged water or inbound marketing automation softwares..:-)

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