Marketing insights for brands, retailers and marketers.

When it comes to the mind-set of beauty shoppers, trying new products and learning about the latest trends are two essential traits, according to a recent study conducted by Women’s Marketing with the Seurat Group.

The report, “Unmasking the Beauty Consumer,” surveyed more than 1,000 multicultural women “on how they discover and purchase beauty and hair” products, said the researchers. Other key findings include that 35 percent of the respondents purchase skin-care products every two to three months while 34 percent make monthly purchases. With hair care, 50 percent purchase items every two to three months while 23 percent buy monthly.

The research also revealed a preference for trying new products, which fosters a sense of discovery and excitement. “Women are constantly falling in and out of love with beauty brands,” the authors of the report noted. “Today, she’s passionate about your product, but tomorrow she may be flirting with someone new. Why settle down with one brand when there are so many exciting options to choose from?”

The poll found that 86 percent of women “say they notice and love learning about the latest trends. But it’s also about efficacy — one in two women keep trying different brands and products to find something that best meets their needs.”

The researchers said this doesn’t necessarily mean the beauty shopper is disloyal to a brand or retailer. Instead, this behavior “makes her an active and passionate consumer — eager to experiment and try with the hope that she will achieve better results.”

“It’s a tremendous opportunity to win this consumer, but to do so, you’ve got to engage her every step of the way,” the researchers from Women’s Marketing said in the report. “The secret to any long-term relationship is communication, so courting her throughout her path-to-purchase is essential.”

The authors of the report said the revealing of these shopping traits and preferences come when the retail landscape is going through significant changes. While consumers are buying more products online, the in-store experience is as important as ever, which is why how and where consumers shop is more critical. And there are important differences to consider.

For example, researchers said “Sephora and Ulta shoppers are more likely to explore and try new products” while those who frequent department and mass market shoppers sought value and convenience. And with social media, Sephora shoppers found it “most important” as a news source while those who shop at mass retailers preferred to “get their beauty news from brand ads and magazines.”

The research report found that prior to shopping, respondents get information about a product or brand from an average of six sources, which includes a beauty professional (57 percent), online reviews (52 percent), social media (36 percent) and magazine articles (38 percent), among others. With influencers, the type of platform also played a role.

“Working with trusted, objective influencers and amplifying their message on social is key to inspiring shoppers to try a new brand or product before they arrive at the store, but our research found that understanding what kind of influencers matter on each platform is critical,” the researchers said. “For example, we learned that YouTube is highly influential among the youngest Millennials who want innovative, best-in-class content from this channel — they aren’t looking for their big sister’s advice here.”

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