Today’s consumer has a short attention span, which makes it harder to stand out in an overcrowded market. One glowing example is the cosmetics industry.

Clear messaging and a return to simplicity are the tips of the spear catalysts that can propel a brand to the top of the market. Kevin Shapiro, Senior Vice President of U.S. Marketing for Consumer Beauty at Coty has experienced great success following the trends in the market and positioning brands to remain at the top. And in a recent podcast interview, Kevin discussed:

  • Undefining beauty — the new consumer’s mindset
  • How to shine in an already vibrant market
  • Inclusivity and diversity as superpowers

Undefining beauty — the new consumer mindset

When Kevin looks back at his journey in the beauty industry, he realizes that almost nothing is the same as it was when he first started.

He notes three significant changes:

  1. Retail transformation
  2. Social media and influencer landscape
  3. Increased focus on sustainability

The way beauty is sold has changed tremendously through the evolution of the retail space. Beauty has been reinvented by retailers with access and emphasis on beauty products is at an all-time high. The beauty e-commerce space has also seen major growth with some beauty brands being exclusively available online as consumer shopping habits become more and more digital.

And within that digital space, beauty has taken over social media with new platforms constantly emerging and tons of beauty influencers gaining millions of followers seemingly overnight. Kevin says that some of the core social media platforms of the beauty industry today didn’t even exist when he began his career.

Sustainability has also joined the beauty space with more and more brands focusing on being environmentally conscious practices as consumers become increasingly aware of the environmental effects of their purchase.

With these changes to the industry, consumers also changed the way they think about beauty has also transformed.

Beauty has become less a necessity and more an opportunity to delight yourself with a new product that encourages self-care. There’s an emphasis on wellness and self-expression and it has changed the way people shop.

“A lot of people now spend time thinking ‘What are the things that I want for myself?’” says Kevin. “That connection with beauty and self-care and wellness became a lot more intrinsic.”

When someone is out shopping for beauty products, they are rewarding themselves. It’s a moment of excitement to find a new fragrance or your favorite mascara to make you feel more like you.

How to shine in an already vibrant market

The beauty space today is highly saturated with big names and micro-influencers now having equal opportunities to be seen.

How does one stand out?

According to Kevin, there are a few things to consider. The consumer’s attention span is getting increasingly shorter and it’s up to marketers to get people excited about their brand in the easiest and quickest way possible and make sure they’re willing to pick up the product and try it out.

Beauty purchase are often more of a treat than something to knock off the to-do list and because of that, beauty brands need to already be in mind when the shopper wanders into the makeup aisle on their weekly grocery run.

Whether it’s through a social media ad they saw earlier in the week, a makeup tutorial from their favorite beauty influencer or an in-store display that spoke to them, you want to make sure your product is on their radar.

“It’s less about creating moments in and of ourselves than being part of moments that consumers are talking about and aligning to their routines and what they’re conscious about,” explains Kevin.

Inclusion and diversity as superpowers

Representation is one of the most important parts of a brand’s success. If your consumer doesn’t see themselves in your brand, they most likely won’t feel a connection or urge to support it.

This is especially true when it comes to beauty brands as faces are quite literally the advertising strategy for just about every product. All races, genders, sexualities and ba need to be showcased in your brand’s image so that consumers of all walks can see themselves using your products.

“What is most important is figuring out when to leverage those different voices and faces so that we are consistently showing up to the consumer in diverse ways and there’s not only the same face over and over or only one angle,” says Kevin.

Diversity and inclusion have been well-known controversies in a lot of beauty conversations and as it becomes a more and more diverse space. Make sure your marketing team is part of the positive change and constantly raising the bar to be a brand that is accessible and representative of all.

Want to learn more about marketing in the beauty space and how consumers are shopping for their next favorite product? Listen on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you find your podcasts.