The global cosmetic ingredients market is expected to reach $33.8 billion by 2025, up from $22.89 billion in 2016, according to a new report published by Transparency Market Research. While this market includes ingredients for many products, targeting skin care, make-up, and oral care, hair care is a primary driver of growth for the category. Broad industry growth represents an enormous opportunity for brands, but an increase in global competition has made it challenging for brands to stand out from the noise and maintain loyalty with their desired audiences.
Today’s hair care industry is defined by three notable consumer preferences. Namely, modern consumers prefer:
- Better ingredients, and are interested in long-term preservation of hair quality.
- Personalized products, designed for specific hair types and styles.
- Distributed commerce opportunities, allowing them to make purchases across a variety of channels and from a variety of retailers.
The convergence of these trends has resulted in a gap for many brands, who have struggled to create enough high-quality content to engage customers and personalize experiences at scale. Aussie Hair, a Procter & Gamble brand, has recognized the importance of “thumb-stopping” visual content as a way to tell better stories and to relate to audiences more effectively. The brand has led the adoption of new, innovative, and authentic content formats to improve marketing and e-commerce performance.
Traditionally, many marketers have thought of visual content in a binary context, where an asset was either a static image or a video. As short-form, vertical video has gained in popularity, brands are starting to explore new content formats, namely, animated visuals that are more efficient and cost-effective than typical video production. Aussie is the first hair care brand to globally partner with Olapic to help generate more compelling visual content.
Aussie has utilized Olapic’s Content in Motion (CiM) solution to turn static consumer-generated photos and brand-owned images into dynamic, thumb-stopping animations. The partnership has enabled Aussie to supercharge its digital marketing channels with high-performance motion-based content, helping to simultaneously eliminate creative advertising fatigue and drive better results. The brand is able to do all of this at a lower cost and faster pace than if it were to produce the same quantity of video using a traditional process.
According to Jose de Cabo, a co-founder of Olapic, “While social video is proving increasingly popular among consumers, the cost, time and complexity of creating quality video content means that it is hard for brands to use as much video across channels as they would like to. This is the problem that Content in Motion solves for Aussie, allowing them to repurpose existing brand assets and UGC curated by Olapic to create lively and engaging visuals that are tailor-made for their own digital channels.”
Thus far, Aussie has deployed Content in Motion assets on its Instagram feed and in the e-commerce website experience. Early results have shown a 33 percent increase in engagement on social post and brand fan feedback has been very enthusiastic.
Additionally, the brand has activated CiM on its Amazon product pages, a particularly innovative use case that is helping it to stand out against overwhelming competition. As Mila Mendez, E-Commerce and Digital Marketing Executive for Laura Geller, recently told us, “Brand recognition and discovery will be even harder [in the future], because with [devices such as Amazon Alexa and fulfillment apps] in place, the brand itself becomes much less important than the customer’s need.” For example, if a customer tells Alexa, “order more hair spray or shampoo,” they may slowly lose an affinity or passion for the brand itself. To remain differentiated, brands must activate more compelling content and give users a reason to return to the purchase experience. Aussie is executing on this trend in a unique and powerful way, transforming boring, white backgrounds into highly visual animations directly on an Amazon product page.
Aussie has always valued authentic communication in its marketing strategy, becoming the first Procter & Gamble brand in Europe to tap Olapic’s industry-leading visual earned content platform, to build a library of user-generated content for use across multiple marketing, advertising, and communication channels. Olapic’s platform collects user-generated images from social media via Aussie hashtags, curates those images with a combination of machine-learning and human moderation, and obtains rights from image creators to use the assets across various marketing channels, including by transforming them into Content in Motion videos. By engaging with online brand fans in this way, Aussie is inspiring a community of Aussie girls around the world to participate in marketing efforts. Aside from the tangible benefits that the products provide to consumers’ hair, through the use of earned content, Aussie is tapping into a desired lifestyle in fun, creative, and authentic ways.
“This strategic partnership truly reflects the Aussie brand – relatable, playful and irreverent,” said Anne-Catherine Graf, Aussie Global BFO Brand Manager. “Using Olapic’s platform we are able to create short-form motion content fast and at scale. We are excited to be innovators in this new digital format.”
Consumer trends will continue to evolve, and competition in this space isn’t going to recede anytime soon. For brands like Aussie, innovating and remaining relevant as well as transparent and honest will be the key to success. It will be interesting to see how they are able to stay ahead now and into the future.