Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Casting without seeing

Here's an interesting marketing stunt: BareEscentuals, a premium cosmetics company, cast its latest campaign by evaluating models from an open call based first on their written words, then by their voices and interview responses. The client and agency never saw a face until they made their final selections.

Here are the winners:

What, you expected them not to be this beautiful? Perhaps a little older, in some cases, than the average cosmetics models. Perhaps brainer. (Andrea is an environmental scientist and entrepreneur, Melanie has an engineering degree, and all are very accomplished.) But wouldn't you have expected a "blind" casting call to have at least turned up someone more average looking? Or older? Or larger?

Only the client, or perhaps TBWA\Chiat\Day, LA can answer those questions.

Nevertheless, a good marketing tactic. I'll bet Dove wishes they had thought of it first.



  1. I wonder if there's any correlation between voice and physical appearance, even one too subtle for us to pick up on consciously.

    Or perhaps, as you hint, the agency just cheated.

  2. I'm not sure if they cheated or not. The correlation could also be with the confidence the women showed in print and in interviews. Being recognized as attractive could create a positive feedback loop for that, I suppose.

  3. It could be that a greater percentage of women who would fit outside the 'standard' beauty would not even bother trying auditioning. I'd be interested to see some of the people who didn't make the cut.

  4. Yes, I am convinced the agency did cheat. And no, this is not a good marketing tactic. It's boring, and it looks fake.

  5. self confidence = a good outlook of yourself = attractive. that is true for both women and men.


  6. I think it's the fact that they sent out the surveys to "models and actresses," who are ALREADY in a line of work that depends on physical appearance (if not necessarily attractiveness). So they selected from a group of people already pre-selected for looks, which sort of undermines their intent, although I understand why they would choose to do it that way (1. it's easier to find people if you have a group to look at, 2. they're looking for people who would be capable of modeling and picking from models ensures that).