Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Beauty Industry Executives: 3 Steps to Integrate Technology into your Business

If you’re a beauty industry executive, you are seeing the train take off toward digital, social, and mobile technologies, but you may be unsure of how you can incorporate it into your brand or if your brand fits. As a student in the Medill Integrated Marketing Communications Master’s program at Northwestern University, studying marketing trends and customer value, I have researched two articles that show that the beauty industry is headed toward technology integration to stay ahead of consumer needs.

Beauty industry managers need to start meeting their customers at every touch point. Vlogs are becoming increasingly popular with beauty professionals and influencers demonstrating make-up, hair, skin, and nail tips as stated in Deanna Utroske’s article Women’sMarketing Outlines Top Trends for Personal Care Brands from CosmeticsDesign.com. Women are looking for content that is relevant to them and easy to navigate. Sites like YouTube, Instagram, and Facebook have attracted popular beauty brands to create accounts where they give tips, tricks, and how-tos on their products. Real connections are being made between brands and their consumers through social media and digital applications.

Photo Courtesy of VRWorld
Furthermore, in the article How Technology is Transforming the Cosmetics Industry from The TelegraphSophie Curtis states that cosmetic companies are starting to partner with technology firms to produce apps and other digital content for their consumers. Customers seeking beauty products still like the tangibility of in-store purchasing, however, with these digital technologies customers can accurately try products on their own face with their cellular device. According to Curtis, 87% of people are expected to be shopping online and 45% of people via mobile phones by the year 2020. With a growing population in mobile shopping, cosmetics companies must learn to give their consumers the tangibility they seek with the ease of purchasing digitally as well.

After researching these two articles along with my graduate learnings in the Medill IMC program, here are three action items I recommend you consider:

1.      Embrace digital: Computers and laptops are becoming outdated as more users switch to their mobile phones and tablets to surf the Web. Creating content that is adapted to those devices means your brand is being seen in more places.
2.     Vlog to gain credibility: Seeing someone red carpet ready is different than knowing how to make that look happen for yourself. Consumers roam the internet in search of trustworthy beauty insights and it will also make your brand visible in yet another way.
3.    Meet the customer at every touch point: With the amount of brand saturation in the marketplace, companies need to be able to connect with their customer at each point of contact. This will ultimately make the purchasing decision easier for the customer.

As a beauty industry executive, incorporating these steps into your businesses will create long lasting customer loyalty which will increase revenues and profits. Not only will customers be loyal to your brand, but they will become brand advocates because you are what they need you to be, when they need you to be it, how they need you to be it.

Christiana is currently a 2015 graduate candidate for the Master of Science in Integrated Marketing Communication at the Medill School at Northwestern University. With a Bachelor from the Walter Cronkite School at Arizona State University, Christiana focused her early career on public relations in start-up’s and major corporations. Realizing she had a passion for the customer, she switched to a career in consumer event management. Christiana would like to find work with building stronger, sustainable beauty brands.

Contact Christiana through Twitter or LinkedIn.

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