By  on May 9, 2008

NEW YORK — At last month's National Association of Chain Drug Stores' Annual Meeting, retailers said they were seeking unique ideas to charge up sales in a gloomy market. Luckily, a few marketers think they have just what the industry needs.

Several manufacturers are trying to make it easier for chains to offer more on-the-go products — even offbeat options such as computer wipes. One of the leaders has been C. Booth with its On the Go line of 11 pocket-size, disposable personal care towelettes. The line includes antibacterial products, deodorants, eye makeup removers, eyewear lens cleaner, feminine hygiene, hydrating body lotion, makeup remover, a minty mouth mitt, screen cleaner for cell phones and a sunscreen. The J-hook packages are merchandised in a self-contained rack and sell for $3.99 each. Chains stocking On the Go include Walgreens, CVS and Rite Aid. Other mass brands have added travel sizes to their assortment including Samy, Salon Selectives, Parissa and Bio-Oil. Some chains said they are not placing the travel items near traditional health and beauty care, rather near housewares or close to checkouts.

Build a better mascara and shoppers will come? That's the idea behind Spinlash, a new mascara by Akasha that rotates 360 degrees to provide a smooth application. The brush is designed to avoid clumps and curl lashes at the same time. Spinlash already caught the attention of Target: The chain featured it on an endcap along with Bare Escentuals. Spinlash is also available at Claire's, Fred Meyer and online. Spinlash can be used with the barrel of any mascara. Suggested retail is $14.99. After sending samples, creator Barbara Carey found consumers discovered another benefit of the brush. "We started getting feedback that if you hold the wand at the base of the eyelashes and pause for just a moment, before stroking upward, you actually get a perfect coating of mascara and a flawless application of eyeliner — all at the same time," she said.

Shoppers are feeling the pinch of rising prices, especially for gas. They are upping coupon use, but many don't have their coupons at the point of purchase. Under the direction of Mike Bloom, senior vice president at CVS, Beauty Handbook discovered a way to get savings to purchasers of CVS' Reinventing Beauty publication immediately. The magazine now offers its coupons on the cover and within the body of the publication. A recent issue has coupons attached to the magazine cover for items such as Physicians Formula, Cover Girl, Pantene, Nailene and Skin Effects. Response has been incredible, said Jack McAuliffe, president and publisher of Beauty Handbook, which includes Reinventing Beauty. He's backed up by advertisers who reported a 5 percent redemption and a 3.2 percent lift in sales from the new form of couponing. "In this economy, you have to try new things," said McAuliffe. 

To access this article, click here to subscribe or to log in.

To Read the Full Article

Tap into our Global Network

Of Industry Leaders and Designers

load comments
blog comments powered by Disqus