The long running ‘girl magnet’ positioning of Axe had its high points over the years. There were some fun films under Axe Effect – the memorable ones included the ‘falling angels ad‘ and the stunt at London Victoria, the masseur one (No.8 in this list) and a few others. Over time, the ads became a bit jaded, predictable and even crass. I guess even the brand management team were worried about the danger of this predictability and foraying into crass territory. Also, competing brands in the category (especially in India) could easily copy the template of ‘get the girl’ and take away any differentiation for the brand. In the recent past, the brand attempted to get away from the template through the Susan Glenn ad in the US and ‘seize the day‘ (about taking on life’s everyday challenges) positioning in Australia. I personally liked the Susan Glenn idea as it connects personally with each one of us but it was still in the ‘attraction to the opposite sex’ territory.
In this new campaign, Find Your Magic’, the team seems to have brought the focus to what the product is meant for – grooming and married it with a universal insight relevant for today’s youth: The most attractive man you can be is yourself. So, #FindYourMagic. It’s what makes you, you. Now, work on it.
Agency: 72andSunny, Amsterdam
The focus on individual grooming and the product is evident in the website, the Axe Collective initiative and the ‘instagroom’ series of videos. I liked how the messaging has been tweaked to suit the individual platforms.
I think the best thing about this new positioning is that it brings the focus to grooming as opposed to merely an act of spraying a deo or just a tangential reference to it and the idea has been taken forward across platforms. It also separates Axe from the many copy cat brands which rode piggyback on ‘girl magnet’ creative execution. Today’s youth are a confident lot and believe in their own talent or ‘magic’ – so that’s likely to resonate with the audience too. What say?