We’ve read the reports. We’ve seen the data. Emotion plays a huge part in “why she buys”. We get it.
But, how often do we take the time to lift that layer of emotion. Does it just make her feel good, or is there more to it?
Since we’re talking about women here, my money is on the fact that there’s more to it.
Check out this photo. I’m on Spring Break, beach bound for the day in the Caribbean. I’ve got my SPF 30, 40, and 60. But, what’s that in the corner? Is that…? Yes, it is.
I was on line at the pharmacy this morning and spotted Ban de Soleil Orange Gelee Classic Formula SPF4. What is happening? They still make this?
If I were in a romantic comedy the camera would immediately cut to a flashback of me in my teen years with all my girlfriends at the beach, with a sea of magazines at our feet, slathering on this glamorous St. Tropez Tanning formula – soaking in that signature fragrance and the excitement of what the night would bring as we sport our new fresh-faced, bronze glow. Notice no mention of wrinkles, skin cancer or sun spots.
Life was good. Life was simple.
And so was the decision today, 20+ yrs later, to pay $14.99 for this little Time Machine tube. I couldn’t resist the idea of rubbing even a tiny bit of this potion into my skin, enjoying that signature fragrance, feeling simple.
Of course, today I sit under my umbrella, covered in La Roche-Posay 60, while wearing a larger-than-life visor that could probably pick up several more movie channels than my current cable package allows.
You could say the path to purchasing this was my version of taking a spin in Doc’s DeLorean equipped with the flux capacitor.
Great idea from our client P&G and Omnicom partner agency Ketchum PR for Gillette razors. They conducted a survey that revealed nearly one out of three women have avoided kissing a guy because he had facial hair. So to demonstrate the benefits of Gillette razors, they are launching Kiss & Tell, a live experiment where women will reveal what they prefer best: first kissing their man with stubble, then kissing without following an on-site shave.
Last week, MMC hosted COVERGIRL Trend Downloads, an event that provided media with an exclusive look at the top Spring/Summer ’13 beauty trends, courtesy of P&G Cosmetics Global Creative Design Director Pat McGrath. In addition to Pat’s presentation, the trends were brought to life with COVERGIRL’s newest products in makeup stations manned by Pat’s assistants.
MMC involved influencers and consumers in the beauty conversation on Twitter (#COVERGIRLtrends) and Instagram. Follow @COVERGIRL and “like” the COVERGIRL Facebook page to get all the latest beauty news.
Photo courtesy of CoverGirl
To reinforce Gillette Venus’ best-in-class technology, MMC brought beauty editors on a guided tour of how razors are made at the Gillette World Shaving Headquarters in Boston, Massachusetts.
Editors were able to experience “the Venus difference” through a look at Venus’ history and in-depth explanation of the technical innovations that make Venus a global leader in female shaving.
Image courtesy of Marina Maher Communications LLC
Nails are having a big fashion “moment”; one that doesn’t appear to be subsiding. For the 2012 Primetime Emmys, the E! Red Carpet Pre-Show had a mani-cam, where stars could show off their stylish nail looks to the world. But that wasn’t the biggest beauty news of the night. It was Kelly Osbourne’s $250,000 manicure. The E! Fashion Police co-host stirred up some controversy after announcing her pricey beauty treatment with an Instagram photo of the “Black Diamond King” polish from Azature. The polish contains 267 carats of crushed black diamond powder, explaining the price tag. Instead of applauding Kelly for her fancy nails, her fans were outraged that she sported a mani that cost more than most Americans make over the course of several years.
So, was this exorbitant? Of course! $250,000 to paint ones nails is OMG outrageous. But was it insensitive to publicize? I say, no. I don’t ever recall major controversy over the lavishly expensive accessories celebrities sport (and heavily promote) on the red carpet, even when the recession was at its worst. Stars and their red-carpet pricey jewels are the norm, standard in the world of excessive Hollywood glam that we’re all accustomed to. But the nails phenomenon is fairly new, so it seems extra absurd to many that a celebrity would promote a $250K manicure. But why? We know so-and-so wore a necklace from so-and-so famous designer worth a million or so dollars and we ogle and ah. This shouldn’t be any different. I say, add it to the list of awesome, unattainable celebrity trends.
To sell clothes. Right? Easy to forget, amid the front row feuds (bitch-slapping even!), celeb sightings, incessant Instagramming, air-kissing, marketing stunts and backstage bragging rights status updates. We *heart* following all of the above, but let’s look at the bigger picture.
As someone behind-the-scenes at Fashion Week for almost a decade—as WWD’s beauty correspondent covering Milan backstage, to working with Aveda or Wella or with Olympus as sponsor—here’s my Fashion Week take…this year from the outside looking in.
Fashion’s Night Out—are we selling yet?
Created in 2009 to drive commerce and remind consumers that retail purchases help fuel and support the industry, it’s grown into such a circus that many residents in areas like Soho and the W. Village stay locked inside their apartment. Energy is high, crowds are thick to the point of suffocating, but were sales up? Several articles have questioned whether anyone’s buying, but I haven’t seen concrete evidence either way.
It’s sooooo commercial…
Well, sure, isn’t that the idea? But has it become so commercial that it stifles creativity (and will that affect sales)? As usual, the New York Times penned its semi-annual stories on Fashion Week commercialization. Typically, these range from last September’s poetic “Tents, but No Circus” where Guy Trebay posits that the “increasingly industrialized Fashion Week now lacks is a certain giddy excitement,” to a review this year—by Cathy Horyn—wondering what happened to the free spirited creativity that usually shines with beginning-of-the-week designers.
According to the Times, even the last bastion of true creativity—street style, which is still everywhere—has lost its authenticity due to brand “partnerships.” What used to be spontaneous snapshots of inspirational and unique style mash-ups are now as choreographed as any photo shoot. But these types of immediate and online activations provide real-time and trackable results, and also allow brands to reach those who are actually shopping.
Out with the Old, Evolve with the New
For several years, fashion pundits have noted a “Split Personality”; one juxtaposing young energy with the old guard (perhaps best summed up in this great shot of “besties” Anna Wintour and Nicky Minaj from last season). Same thing for how clothes actually sell. On one hand, via traditional retail buyers, and on the other, with forward-thinkers like Moda Operandi and, now, Topshop, who are pre-selling fashion right off the runway (just yesterday, Topshop Unique live-streamed its show and made up to six pieces available in custom colors available in 6 weeks. Or, order makeup from the looks to arrive in 48 hours). You could think of this evolution as Fashion Darwinism – but instead of survival of the fittest, it’s survival of the most forward-thinking. Like, for example, the recent collaboration/partnership between creative online retailing renegade Yoox.com and French luxury goods group PPR. According to Pambianco News (my former employer), through the joint venture, PPR brands will have access to Yoox’s highly automated and global technological platform, and will benefit from Yoox’s international presence. Bien joué.
The best line of the week goes to Carmen Dell’Orefice, 81, on the heels of her recent Fashion Week splash. She was asked by Today’s Jenna Bush Hager if she’s had any work done. Her response, “If your ceiling was falling down, wouldn’t you fix it?”
I find it inspiring to watch a woman age on her terms. If you want to do a little something, do a little something. Whatever you choose to do or not do, own your decision and don’t judge others. I love seeing a woman more than four decades older than me absolutely owning it. Marketers get too literal at times with their target audience and think a woman like Dell’Orefice won’t resonate with me, when in fact she not only gets my attention immediately, she inspires me and reminds me that there’s so much more to life than what’s happening at this very moment.
As marketers it’s our job to craft good stories and find unique, creative ways to express them in memorable and sharable ways. Congrats to New York designer Norisol Ferrari and Finnish label Marimekko for having the foresight to send this woman down the runway. Just the right amount of beautiful disruption to score coveted headlines amongst the sea of brands clamoring to stand out.
“I don’t know if it’s good or silly,” Dell’Orefice told Today of her current modeling career. “It’s what I enjoy doing, and I’m able to do it.”
Yes, I’ll have what she’s having.
Image courtesy of ABC News