Corporate Strategy

Mary Kay, PepsiCo, and Dove: Digital Innovation, Talent & Advocacy Initiatives For Women’s History Month

Liz Dominguez
Managing Editor
Liz Dominguez
Mary Kay

For the month of March, the U.S. celebrates the vital role of women in American history, and several consumer goods companies are joining in by showcasing women-focused initiatives across digital innovation, talent, and advocacy. 

Beauty company Mary Kay Inc. is just one brand that is taking the opportunity to highlight its digital transformation progress — especially the role women play in the “Fourth Industrial Revolution.” 

According to Deborah Gibbins, chief operating officer for Mary Kay — who shared her thoughts on International Women’s Day this week — in order to maximize tech opportunities, digital literacy skills are an “absolute requirement” for women entrepreneurs to fully participate in the global economy. And according to UN Women, participation is still lacking — women’s exclusion from the digital world has shaved $1 trillion from the GDP of low- and middle-income countries in the last ten years.

As a company founded by a woman for women, said Gibbins, the brand has several initiatives in place, including providing access to digital tools, ensuring women have the right skills and training to use them effectively, and bridging the digital gender gap. This includes women-focused digital upskilling, augmented reality apps, and more. 

Gibbins highlighted the following digital efforts:

  • Mirror Me: An AR-powered makeover app through which customers can try on different looks and add products to their cart. 
  • Skin Analyzer: A tech-powered tool that identifies customers’ skin characteristics and provides a customized skin care routine. 
  • Interactive Catalog: A catalog that allows customers to shop Mary Kay products and encounter interactive elements like GIFs, videos, shareable wish lists, AR makeovers, and more.
  • InTouch: A Salesforce-enabled mobile platform that provides consultants with easily accessible resources to manage their business and expand their beauty product knowledge.
  • Link & Learn: An education platform that allows consultants to connect with the Mary Kay community and engage in self-paced, interactive learning. 

“We’re just getting started. The digital revolution is underway,” said Gibbins. “Let’s not miss out on this golden opportunity to enable women and girls to champion entrepreneurship in the digital age!” 

  • Mary Kay Partnerships that Help Women Entrepreneurs

    The International Telecommunication Union (ITU), in collaboration with the Women Entrepreneurship Accelerator and Mary Kay Global, launched the WEA Digital Innovation Challenge to build enabling eco-systems for women entrepreneurs. 

     In support of WEA, ITU will also address the gender digital skills gap in 2023 by providing women entrepreneurs with access to free, digital innovation-focused learning modules required to advance in the digital economy. 

    The International Trade Centre (ITC) launched a free online Entrepreneurship Certificate Program in 2022 under its SheTrades program, powered by Mary Kay. It covers the seven key stages of the entrepreneurial journey.

    Mary Kay also partners with the Generation Equality Action Coalition on Technology and Innovation, supporting multi-stakeholder partnerships that promote a more equal and diverse digital transformation.

PepsiCo’s Talent Campaign

The company launched a “She Is PepsiCo” campaign that recognizes 28 associates from 20 cities across the U.S. and Canada — across manufacturing and operations roles — who exemplify leadership and dedication to their teams and communities.  

According to Karen Jordan, PBNA chief supply chain officer, women play a valuable role across the organization’s frontline (made up of 45,000 women employees), powering its supply chain and transforming the industry. 

Each “She is PepsiCo” honoree will be recognized with a personalized delivery truck wrap that shows the associate in their work setting. The campaign is part of PepsiCo’s overall DEI strategy: “to achieve gender parity in management roles, maintain pay equity, and help uplift historically marginalized communities around the world.”


Andrea Ferrara, chief human resources officer for PepsiCo Beverages North America (PBNA), emphasized that representation matters. 

"Women need to see themselves in roles to understand the doors that are open for them," she said. "As leaders, we are committed to applying the same rigor and care to the employee experience at the frontline as we are at all levels of the organization."

Dove’s Beauty Marketing Advocacy

Dove, owned by parent company Unilever, is taking a stance against harmful beauty standards being deepened across social media via filters that “distort reality,” as well as dangerous marketing and advertising tactics. Using the hashtag #TurnYourBack and #NoDigitalDistortion, Dove is asking its community to reject a trending Bold Glamour filter.

Particularly impactful during Women’s History Month, the company is empowering women to push against unhealthy standards: 48% of girls who distort their photos regularly have lower body esteem compared to 28% of girls who don't, according to Dove. 

The company is also promoting its Dove Self-Esteem Project: free tools to help kids navigate social media in a positive way, created in partnership with the Centre for Appearance Research. the Confidence Kit.

"While social media filters can be a source of creativity and self-expression, Bold Glamour goes beyond 'play.' Tools once only available to professionals can now be accessed by young girls at the touch of a button and without regulation," said Firdaous El Honsali, global vice president, external communications at Dove. "At Dove, we are committed to #NoDigitalDistortion in any of our marketing and advertising so that we can support a more positive environment on social media that is representative of real, authentic beauty.”

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