In Fight Against “B.O.”
you safe from ‘B.O.’ in all 13 areas of the skin?”
-- Dwight Weist
Lincoln, Me. (DG)—
During the 1930’s and 1940’s, the use of intimidation
and classic sound effects in its radio advertising helped Lifebuoy Health
Soap become the country’s top selling bath soap.
During this time, the radio commercials were specially designed that a
daily bath or shower with Lifebuoy had a huge impact on a
person’s popularity in business and social life.
With the overwhelming success of the soap’s advertising, there wasn’t
any need to change anything with the way Lifebuoy was presented on
the radio. In other words, “if
it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” In
this case, however, the advertising was far from broken, but it
did have some tweaking done to it.
In 1949, the listeners who tuned in NBC’s BIG TOWN
noticed a change in the Lifebuoy radio commercials.
Noticeably missing were the foghorn and “BEEEEEE-OHHHHH” sound
effects. These 2 sinister sound
effects were replaced by, of all things, a cheery jingle sung by some happy
number “13” also played an important role.
Announcer Dwight Weist* pointed out the usually unlucky number was
associated with the 13 areas of the skin where “B.O.” did its dirty
work. A bath or shower with Lifebuoy eliminated the
infamous stink in all 13 areas before “B.O.” even had a chance to
Weist also talked about Lifebuoy’s “Purifying
Ingredient” and how it cleaned the skin better than any other soap.
Doctors proved this bold statement by conducting 820 scientific tests
with Lifebuoy and the other leading bath soaps.
The competition removed dirt and perspiration from the human body, but
they didn’t remove the “invisible dirt” that formed a foothold on “B.O.”
Lifebuoy’s Purifying Ingredient eliminated the invisible
dirt along with the other unpleasant stuff.
Even with the happy jingle, Purifying Ingredient, and the
number 13, the overall message was still serious in nature, and “B.O.” was
still being taken as a serious threat to popularity and success.
In the past, the Lifebuoy commercials stopped
at that point. It eliminated “B.O.,”
and every man, woman, and child should use it in their daily bath or shower.
Nothing more was necessary. However,
this series of commercials marked the beginning of a new era.
Instead of intimidation, these commercials focused on the kinder,
gentler, and milder Lifebuoy Health Soap.
Kinder, gentler, and milder for the people who used it; not for “B.O.”
Lifebuoy’s Purifying Ingredient eliminated
all traces of “B.O.” with soap so mild, it could also be used for
complexion care instead of beauty soap. To
go along with the mild soap, Lifebuoy had a rich coconut oil
lather that made the bath or shower refreshing for its users.
It had a knack of perking up sleepy people first thing in the morning.
It didn’t exactly replace coffee, but a refreshing Lifebuoy
bath or shower got its users off to a good start.
As for revealing the kinder, gentler side of Lifebuoy
on the air, its popularity was the same as before.
In reality, the Lifebuoy users already knew of its mildness
and refreshing ability in the tub or shower--- even if it wasn’t mentioned in
The changes made in Lifebuoy’s radio
advertising may not necessarily compare with the commercials with the 2 sinister
sound effects of the past, but over 40 million considerate Americans still use
it for their daily bath or shower. That’s
a lot of popular and successful people who were worry free of “B.O.”