From the very beginning the Body Shop has held to its values on natural and organic cosmetic products. With social justice at its core rooted by its founder Dame Anita Roddick, it continues to act as a supporter to various causes such as education and bans on animal testing. It is also well known for its commitments to specific causes such as for fair trade and against sex trafficking.
Studying The Body Shop’s brand with J. Kapferer’s Brand Identity theory (1986) we can evaluate its physique, relationship, reflection on customers, culture, personality, and self-image.
Their physique begins with its logo. Their products have solid connection with personal care and environmental concern occurred throughout; natural ingredients and never tested on animals, and packaging; simple, refillable, and recyclable.
Body Shop focuses to connect with people who are environmentally and ethically responsible, and who live the ‘green’ lifestyle. The people who buy Body Shop products are environmentally and socially aware, but they also have the money to buy the products as Body Shop is seen by some as being a bit on the pricier side. Its strong values, however, make the customers feel good when they purchase something from a “conscious” store, thanks to the social and environmental commitments of the brand.
The legacy of being a cause-oriented organisation lives on in the brand’s ethos today and is a key factor of its social media marketing.
Through its many social media platforms such as Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram, they are creating a sense of community. For instance they have pages for each country on these platforms, e.g. Indonesia, Finland, and Denmark, where conversation is held in the national language of that country. By this Body Shop is creating a strong community and a relationship with their consumers. Also they are using a relatively new concept – bloggers and vloggers – opinion leaders to many consumers to spread the awareness of the brand.
They do not only use social media for promotional purposes such as product information, upcoming products and special events. Instead, they have opened a two-way catalogue with their followers; when visiting any of their social media channels, you will not only witness Body Shop providing tips and engaging in conversation with their followers, but also find out information about their causes. The Body Shop is challenging, inspiring and motivating their followers to get involved.
While the brand is serious about its work with causes, it also displays an ability to be cheerful and fun. During the 2014 Oscars, they hosted a Twitter “slumber party” around the hashtag, #GreatInBed, which was built around the ‘Vitamin E Overnight Serum-in-Oil’ product launch. This was a way for them to connect with their followers at the same time. Here is another example called ‘Happy Bunny! Celebrating the EU ban on Animal Testing for Cosmetics’
After the EU Ban on animal testing for cosmetics, Body Shop now continues to work towards a ban on animal testing globally.
The culture of Body Shop is based on its values; against animal testing, support community fair trade, defend human rights, ethical trade, and protect the planet. They show high amounts of respect to the planet and living things on it. They embody pure and natural beauty. Finally, they are globally on the forefront on activism towards ethical conduct. They challenge, inspire, and motivate everyone – me and you to care for our planet.
How do you see Body Shop affecting the world today?
The many campaigns Body Shop is involved in, take a peek! http://www.thebodyshop.com.au/Values-OurCampaigns.aspx#.UyWaefmSzsY R. Dragon, 2014. http://socialmediatoday.com/big_brand_theory/body-shop-has-beauty-heart Body Shop Values Report 2011: http://www.thebodyshop.com/content/pdf/global-values_report.pdf