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Period: October 9, 2018 to November 13, 2018
Comment & Opinion or Companies, Organizations or Consumers or Controversies & Disputes or Deals, M&A, JVs, Licensing or Earnings Release or Finance, Economics, Tax or Innovation & New Ideas or Legal, Legislation, Regulation, Policy or Market News or Marketing & Advertising or Other or People & Personalities or Press Release or Products & Brands or Research, Studies, Advice or Supply Chain or Trends

Men's Grooming Brand Oars + Alps Forms Retail Partnership With Ulta Beauty

Following a US$1.3 million seed-funding round in summer last year, male grooming brand Oars + Alps is partnering with Ulta Beauty to expand distribution beyond its own direct-to-consumer platform. It’s the brand’s first retail partnership, although it sells select items on Amazon’s Luxury Beauty store. Ulta will sell seven of the 23 Oars + Alps products on Ulta.com and in 300 stores. Co-founder and chief executive officer Mia Duchnowski claims the partnership can help boost awareness of the brand's products. The brand competes in category dominated by brands like Procter & Gamble's Gillette and Old Spice, and Unilever’s Axe.

"Ulta continues to grow men’s grooming business with direct-to-consumer brand Oars and Alps", Digiday, October 01, 2018

Johnson & Johnson And VaynerMedia Focus On Credibility To Sway Gen Z

Brands are responding to a decline in consumer trust of influencers. Johnson & Johnson and its creative agency, VaynerMedia, are reaching out to Gen Z consumers by enlisting teenagers who, by their actions, are seen as more credible, through their actions, even if they have a more modest online following. The company selected several teenagers, including Dillon Eisman who runs a nonprofit in Southern California, to star in one of its videos promoting the skincare brand Clean & Clear, resulting in a 19 percent boost in sales. Credibility was also a key factor in turning to established major influencers Brooklyn and Bailey McKnight to launch C&C, a new Clean & Clear sub-brand. 

"Clean Break: Why J&J is enlisting teens with modest followings as influencers", Advertising Age, October 02, 2018

Direct-To-Consumer Retailer Brandless Opens Second Pop-Up With Purpose Store In New York City

Brandless, a direct-to-consumer e-commerce business focusing on affordable pricing, opened its second Pop-Up With Purpose store in New York's Milk Building. It will run from late October to early November 2018, offering visitors an interactive experiences, including a beauty lounge and fair trade coffee bar. Chief executive officer and co-founder Tina Sharkey says the company wants to highlight values of the company and those of its online community, using multimedia displays. Brandless also wants the pop-up to widen its reach to young urban consumers.

"New York Brandless Pop-Up Will Feature Everything From Tasting Flights To A Clean Beauty Lounge", PSFK, October 03, 2018

Gillette Introduces Its First Direct-To-Consumer Service In Canada

Gillette has launched its direct-to-consumer (DTC) service, Gillette On Demand, in Canada. It features a subscription service and an option for one-off purchases, providing consumers with flexibility, shopping convenience, and customization opportunities. The service offers blades and razors at a range of price points, including the Fusion5, MACH3 Turbo and Sensor 3.

"Gillette® on Demand™ Launches in Canada to Deliver a Smooth and Easy Way to Get World Class Blades", Procter & Gamble, October 03, 2018

Survey Shows Convenience A Key Reason For The Growing Popularity of Direct-To-Consumer Brands

A survey by Diffusion and YouGov discovered several reasons for the growing popularity of DTC brands among consumers, with convenience being the primary motivation. 27% said buying DTC brands is more convenient than going to a store, with older consumers finding convenience more important than millennials (26% versus 17%). The survey found that DTC brands fell short with personalization, customer service, and limited use of organic or eco-friendly ingredients. Still, DTC looks set for continued growth, with 81% of US internet users indicating they’d buy at least one DTC item in the next five years.

"Where Direct-to-Consumer Brands Are Winning Consumer Confidence", eMarketer , October 04, 2018

True Sons Launches Subscription Model To Tap Home Hair Dye Market For Men

Seeing the lack of choices for men who want to color their head, beard and body hair at home, True Sons launched an at-home hair dye subscription service. Founder Carl Sandler, claims current offerings are very limited with the brand Just for Men dominating the $200 million market. He believes men find shopping for the product difficult and embarrassing and would prefer to have it delivered. Currently, just 8 percent of men color their hair compared to 80 percent of women. The kit includes all elements needed - gloves, wipes and the ready-mixed hair dye foam. It’s available from the brand's website, truesons.com, for $30 per month or $72 per quarter.

"A New Option in the Men’s Hair Color Market", Women’s Wear Daily, October 05, 2018

Big Data And AI Helping Beauty Brands Identify Opportunities, Develop New Products

AI is being used to help companies spot unserved opportunities through analyzing online data such as searches, reviews and purchase patterns. Alibaba’s Tmall Innovation Centre helped L'Oréal China as it developed a male beauty line for the Chinese market, while A.S. Watson, which has 14,400 stores in 24 markets worldwide worked with Unilever to launch TRESemmé hair care in China Some smaller brands are using AI to developed personalized products and services.  Indian brand, Freewill, uses information about an individual’s hair to create personalized hair products, factoring in data such as city and weather. While Singapore-based Alcheme uses AI to analyze a customer’s selfie to assess skin conditions and select and create personalized skin care products.

"Data is power: Indie beauty brands get personal with big data", Cosmetics Design Asia, October 05, 2018

Avon South Africa Launches Its First Beauty Pop-Up Store

In an attempt to increase accessibility [to?] and awareness of its brand, Avon South Africa opened the first of a series of exclusive beauty pop-up stores. The stores will be at major cities and will have make-up specialists and skincare experts to advise customers. Precilla Kalogeropoulos, head of integrated marketing communications at Avon, claims more pop-up stores will be launched nationwide to promote the Avon brand, and especially its premium lines, but also to encourage women to become entrepreneurs as an Avon representative. 

"Avon launches first beauty pop-up stores", Independent Online, October 08, 2018

L’Oréal Promotes Anca Stefan To Chief Digital Officer For Russia And Kazakhstan

L’Oréal has promoted Anca Stefan from digital and consumer intelligence manager for L’Oréal Romania to chief digital officer for Russia and Kazakhstan. Her promotion came four years after joining L’Oréal Romania where she played a key role in developing the company's digital marketing strategies. She plans to adapt L’Oréal’s global digital strategy to better address a market that is not dominated by Google and Facebook’

"L’Oréal Russia and Kazakhstan announces Anca Stefan as new Chief Digital Officer", Global Cosmetics News, October 12, 2018

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