[By: Claire Austen] [The Moodie Report] [Read More]
L’Oréal Travel Retail’s annual press conference at the TFWA World Exhibition in Cannes is always one of the highlights of the event. This year’s edition was no exception with key spokespeople covering a range of critical subjects, including the vital importance of service; the allure of colour cosmetics in drawing in new consumers; how to cater to an ever more diverse consumer base; and the vital importance of taking travel retail digital.
Vincent Boinay Travel Retail Managing Director
L’Oréal Travel Retail Managing Director Vincent Boinay opened the press conference by cutting straight to the chase: “20 years ago big beauty companies such as Lancôme and Estée Lauder dominated the market. Today is different, the world is changing. The question is: are we?”
Here we cover his key points:
- The need to innovate is more vital than ever. The beauty industry is changing at the speed of light because of the changing consumer: Chinese, Brazilians, Indonesians and Millennials.
- Digital is the enabler for the travel retail industry. It will allow a much greater product assortment to the extent that “two floors in Cannes will not be enough to show everything”.
- The introduction of a new virtual tool, the Interactive Retail Design Library, will be a core asset of business development in travel retail. This innovation allows retail design to be changed and renovated with ease. Linking back to last year’s focus on ‘sharing beauty with all’ and the importance of sustainable development, this tool will allow stores to be redesigned faster and more efficiently. As Boinay commented: “The tool allows you to navigate 360˚ around any store. It will improve our partnership with our retailers who will be able to easily check, for example, on a travel retail cluster for Asia Pacific, with one click.”
Boinay noted that although the travel retail business remains very volatile it is still a key recruitment tool and a significant category in the beauty industry. “Based on traffic and quality of retail we should grow and we will grow in the future.”
Expanding on this, Boinay then used three examples to illustrate ways in which L’Oréal Travel Retail is offering consumers more:
Described as: “the new worldwide phenomenon” this US make-up brand which has taken social media by storm is set to be huge for L’Oréal in 2017.
Roger & Gallet
The renowned French brand, which began producing fine fragrances and soaps in 1862, is being totally reinvented from Shanghai: “originally from France to the rest of the world, now from Shanghai to the rest of the world.”
Niche perfumery is a high-growth segment and the acquisition earlier this year of Paris-based Maison de Parfum Atelier Cologne by L’Oréal adds: “What was missing in our portfolio before. It is going to mushroom in the future.”
Stefania Fabiano, Managing Director L’Oréal Travel Retail Consumer Product Division
Stefania Fabiano reported that make-up is booming everywhere in the world and will continue to increase. In travel retail, make-up is set to be the fastest growing category for the next five years.
This growth is being driven by Millennials, a generation who are ultra-connected through social media and who love to play and experiment with colour cosmetics. Their love of on-line make-up tutorials means that they are becoming more and more expert as consumers.
With regard to Chinese consumers Fabiano noted that although this market is “still underdeveloped compared to other zones” the rising of the Chinese middle class is creating a huge phenomenon around lipstick. L’Oréal with its portfolio of luxe and mass market brands can “meet all their needs to enjoy the make-up world.”
“Let colour be the traffic driver,” is a key message from L’Oréal as demonstrated in the launch next year of Nyx Cosmetics. Fabiano explained, “The question is how can we accelerate even more? The answer is colour drives penetration and we will put colour at the centre.” In the example of Giorgio Armani Beauty a huge range of shades displayed in an easily accessible way will entice the consumer and encourage impulse buying. In travel retail, offering an exclusive such as a three lipstick coffret further encourages impulse and gifting purchases.
The power of innovation is another important factor as seen with Lancôme’s Juicy Shaker and with the addition of Nyx and its boundary-pushing products such as Lip Lingerie.
Service: savvy consumers don’t just want to buy products, they look for classic service from expert staff, beauty assistants and make-up artists. Products such as the L’Oréal Paris Look On The Go compacts tap into this need by offering an all-in-one kit tailor-made by a make-up designer.
Digital service is also huge for L’Oréal with each brand developing its own device such as the L’Oréal Paris Makeup Genius app. Fast, funny and a way of driving more sales, the app allows the user to instantly apply make-up to their image so that they can ‘try’ before they buy.
Retailtainment also has a part to play for a true shopping experience that creates an environment where make-up can express itself.
Piermarco Luzzatto-Giuliani Managing Director L’Oréal Travel Retail Active Cosmetics and Professional Products
Piermarco Luzzatto-Giuliani spoke of the re-energising of skincare in travel retail. In 2015 it was the number one product category in travel retail, surpassing tobacco. However, the skincare category is seeing a switch in consumer behaviour, with many travellers on a quest for new discoveries.
Travellers want better, more exciting innovation across all markets. When buying skincare they want to experience: sensorial pleasure; safety (as more people become concerned by pollution, cancer, obesity and more suffer from sensitive skin); and a fantastic shopping experience.
The development of low cost carriers has led to a growing diversity of consumers which means, Luzzatto-Giuliani explained: “We need to be inclusive not exclusive”.
To this end, Luzzatto-Giuliani set out the ways in which L’Oréal is reinventing and re-energising its skincare category:
1. Luxury skincare with a focus on technology and textures. For example, Lancôme Énergie de Vie and Biotherm Life Plankton Essence.
2. World’s best retailtainment. Recent promotions of the dermocosmetics with a focus on healthy skin as the future of beauty have led to incremental sales of 80%.
3. Service. Combined with a quest for a social conscience as illustrated by The Body Shop.
4. Consumer always at the heart. Offering the consumer more through the expertise of beauty advisors and pharmacist advice.
5. Travel retail offers. Giving the consumer great value across the board from premium skincare to mass market.
Luzzatto-Giuliani finished by stating his belief that L’Oréal’s advantage is in its unique and consumer-relevant skincare portfolio which is proving an efficient conversion driver.
Thomas Laroia L’Oréal Travel Retail Digital Manager
Digital is the only future for travel retail according to Thomas Laroia.
It’s all about consumer-centricity, he said. Today consumers are going 100% digital as everyone uses search engines, books tickets online and constantly looks for wifi. Laroia noted: “Shopping behaviour is the only thing that has not gone digital for travel retail and that is because we haven’t been able to provide a model for it. L’Oréal is changing this by becoming traveller-centric.”
Social media platforms will be a key factor in this. “It is time to bring digital to the travel retail industry with one objective: to understand how to better serve retailers and travellers,” Laroia explained.
A digital catalogue will be created which will bring together 2,400 products across seven brands in nine languages. This will be available for all retailers. By 2017 the aim is for 100% of assets and languages to be available in a 100% automised format through ready-to-use brand pages.
Laroia explained how mobile-friendly is not “the new tech, it is the leading method” and asked whether digital can also be used in-store to drive consumers. An example was given of a recent Polo Ralph Lauren initiative, where consumers were offered the chance to win a race in a Lamborghini, which won two mobile marketing awards. Another successful campaign, around David Beckham for Biotherm Homme, featured digital triggers on boarding passes.
Laroia ended the press conference with a call for the travel retail industry to unite: for retailers, airports and brands to get behind the digital revolution.