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How Dove Chocolate increased product sales by 226% on Valentines Day

An Introduction:


Dove is a brand of chocolate made and marketed by the Mars company.


The flourishing business passed through family generations and was eventually acquired by M&M/Mars, making it accessible nationwide. Dove chocolates and ice cream are now a common American association with indulgence, an ultimate in the world of chocolate.


Weibo Strategy For Success


Dove Chocolate scored a flashy online marketing coup with its viral campaign on Valentine’s Day, 2012.  Dove engaged the savvy marketers at SapientNitro, a Shanghai-based agency, who came up with a way to promote Dove chocolate without any external costs.


To attract users’ attention, SapientNitro used the story of installation artist Ma Jin, who wanted to build a life-size fantasy carriage out of Dove’s distinctive heart-shaped tins.


  • In a concise but heartfelt webcam video, Ma explained his plan to surprise his sweetheart with his home-made gift made from chocolate boxes, and asks fellow users to send him their empty boxes to help him complete his project.
  • SapientNitro’s idea paid off big time. The simple video engaged users’ emotions, and asked them to engage with the consumer product, but in an elegant twist, didn’t specifically suggest buying anything.


With its simplicity, emotional appeal, and heartfelt call for users’ participation, the video was loaded with viral potential.


As noted on techinasia.ca, the resulting statistics proved SapientNitro’s social media brilliance: the video was reposted 47,000 times, and attracted 34,000 comments. In the end, sales of Dove’s Valentine’s Day product increased 226%.

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