Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Will you find your beauty in a box? – an amazing box can help Marketers to create WOM

Have you ever thought you will find your beauty in a box? Women in the town are subscribing a little box called Birchbox, which will send out a box of 5 sample beauty products for $10 each month. This little box has becoming the most popular and amazing little box among women that roaming around word-of-mouth, tweeter and Youtube.

Receiving this Birchbox is like a gift. It probably gets you a latest series of SMASHBOX powder, or a lipstick of NARS. You don’t know what you will receive every time, but Birchbox will always surprise you. Check out the youtube, you will find lots of unboxing videos on it. People enjoy the unboxing moment to find out what Birchbox give them this time.

When you subscribed the Birchbox, you fill out a beauty profile. A beauty editor in Birchbox will choose monthly samples for you in your box. The success of the business caught many beauty brands attention. Brands like Smashbox, Stilla, Kiehl’s…. you name it, are scrambling to give away their sample to Brichbox subscribers. If you like the sample, you can go click on the item on Birchbox website and purchase the full-size one.

By sending a delicate box with beauty samples which might suit different person’s beauty profile, Brichbox creates a two-way communication and another sales channel for brands and consumers. Consumers enjoy the discovery process and try new stuffs. Brands seek as many touch points as possible with consumers. Beyond that, Birchbox creates a place for both consumers and brands to build a further relationship with each other. Consumers can share their comments online or through Birchbox, Marketers can receive feedbacks and collect data from both consumers and Birchbox.

The box is so hot that forbes, Mashables and Insiders all wrote a story for Birchbox. Because not only women can receive this “gift”, but men can also have it now. However, as forbes covered in the article, my question is, while it garnered great success among female consumers, will Birchbox gain success among men since their shopping behaviors are different from women?

But, hey, if you are a brand marketer, you may think about using Birchbox to communicate with your consumers. If you are obsessed with make-up, well, subscribe a Birchbox for yourself!

**Li-Chia Huang is a graduate student in the Northwestern Medill IMC marketing program and is specializing in beauty industry marketing trends. Li-Chia Huang will be graduating in December 2012. Li-Chia can be reached on twitter using the handle @Lycahuang0621.

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