WWD tells us, in an article in its September 3 issue ("Mass Market Beauty Shifts Promotional Gears") that mass-market beauty brands in the U.S. are radically changing their approach to promotional marketing: at the beginning of the year, L'Oreal Paris announced that they were withdrawing the Buy One Get One Free (BOGOs) strategy of their "tactical arsenal". It was followed by Revlon, among others.
At a time of economic crisis and a shift towards value, brands and retailers realize that promotional frenzy not only destroys their margins but also destroys their image: consumers eventually come to believe that the brand is systematically discounted. This leads brands to rethink their marketing strategy by playing on other devices: gift cards, gifts with purchase, special events ... or - like Target – playing up the rewards received to encourage consumers, surfeited of novelties, to buy.
Walgreen's chose to innovate by taking - in partnership with Neutrogena, RoC and Revlon - pages of advertising in Vogue, Allure and Glamour, presenting products, advice and services. Maybelline (in partnership with Marie Claire) has created a pop-up store, open during the New York Fashion Week on Broadway, offering free make-up sessions.
In fact brands and distributors of mass-market cosmetics adopt the same marketing strategies as selective beauty brands: how will the latter react?