Consumer attitudes towards private labels have evolved in recent years. Initially motivated by a desire to save money following the downturn, many consumers have now found comparable quality in store brands. This is likely to continue as leading retailers keep developing “on-trend” premium and specialized personal care ranges that meet consumers’ quality expectations. Indeed, Datamonitor research shows that for some, perceptions of private label beauty products as being of desirable quality have remained beyond the recession. Over a third of consumers in 2011 agreed that private label beauty products offer a good alternative to famous name brands.
Consequently, there is a growing need for premium brands to adopt a differentiation strategy. In doing so, they must identify and deliver the specific premiumization dimensions that are most important to their target audience. Products that do this effectively are likely to be perceived as more luxurious, thereby increasing consumers’ willingness to pay a price premium. Those that don’t, will increase the likelihood that they will suffer from the escalating private label threat.
At a global level, Datamonitor has established that beauty consumers are most willing to pay a premium for quality-aligned product attributes, most specifically “products backed by science” (39%). This is followed by “organic/natural beauty products” (36%), which can be considered a more personal attribute linked to hedonism and self-concept. These findings highlight the significant premiumization opportunities that currently exist at the convergence of science and nature. Premium beauty manufactures must look to capitalize on this “sweet spot” in commanding or justifying price premiums.
However, consumer skepticism about the credibility of both natural and science-led claims remains a barrier to premiumization. With over half of consumers either ambivalent or mistrusting of both natural (59%) and science-backed (63%) claims, it is crucial that industry players tapping into this “sweet spot” explore credibility enhancing tactics in marketing their products. This will require beauty manufacturers to better communicate their product features and attributes – not only with more transparent, evidence-led, and benefit-driven messages – but most importantly through the inclusion of unique selling propositions.
Quite simply, manufacturers must look to leverage their brand story and stay true to what they stand for if they are to effectively communicate product performance, expertise, and value to premium consumers. Ultimately, the ability of a personal care brand to capitalize on the prevalent consumer demand for “hi-tech naturals” in today’s premium beauty space is anchored in brand authenticity and the ways in which companies leverage this to counter consumer skepticism and create more compelling and real product claims.
To hear more about what Datamonitor considers as being the core premiumization opportunities in today’s personal care industry - as well as other consumer beauty trends - visit Daniel Bone’s Seminars at in-cosmetics Asia.
Global Beauty Trends - Consumer & Product Perspectives on 02 Nov at 11:45-12:30
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