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Innovation Through Diversity: Global Marketing

By: Alexandra Fritsch-Gil, Jason Boland, Maria Bowman, Lauren Hoffman and Breanna Martin
Posted: June 8, 2012

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In the Consider phase, the goal is to make a first impression that shows consumers the brand is listening to them and understands they have unique needs. Brands can provide personalized experiences that include interactive digital window displays using facial recognition, digital magazines that learn as consumers browse, and online experiences backed with powerful customer relationship management tools that speak directly to the consumer.

Brands should go beyond traditional visual cues and provide sensorial experiences to their consumers using verbal and non-verbal communication. Audio and scent branding are being used effectively by companies like Dunkin’ Donuts. In South Korea, each time a Dunkin’ Donuts radio commercial was played on commuter buses, a light coffee aroma was released to provide a sensory connection to the brand. Brands acknowledge possible language barriers and find other nonverbal ways to communicate with consumers.

In Evaluate, the goal is for consumers to experience the brand in a way that allows them to narrow down their choices and commit to a purchase. Brands must ensure ongoing access to product information and guidance so that consumers can try the product both in person and virtually to maximize exposure and access of your brand to consumers and encourage purchase. Brands are finding innovative ways to create customized experience in and out of the store environment. In Japan, vending machines with facial recognition and can recommend a drink based on the consumer profile.8

Additionally, brands can use holograms, projections, augmented reality, video, virtual concierge glasses, tablets and mobile to deliver an enhanced shopping experience for customers. By using consumers’ digital fingerprint, brands can then tailor the language and visuals to reflect the consumers’ personal traits, diversity and custom needs while giving real time feedback to the brand as they sense how long consumers engage with the platforms and content.

In the Buy bond, brands must find ways to make their products accessible and be where consumers are. With technology developments such as KinectShop, an augmented reality shopping tool and the explosion of mobile, every surface of the home and corner of the world can become an opportunity to buy. Some brands already let consumers buy products at a discount or for free in exchange for social media sharing allowing consumers to pay with social currency, i.e. ‘pay with a tweet,’ a Facebook post or a review.

In Re-evaluate, after a consumer has purchased a product, the brand must work to keep consumers interested and engaged. The brand must have an engaging life online where they add value to people’s lives. Brands can enhance the relationship with consumers by providing application techniques, “how-to’s” and suggest complementary products. Additionally, brands should create platforms for consumers to express their opinions and use digital listening to better understand consumer needs and respond to them to ensure they have an accurate perception of the brand’s offerings and values.

Loyal consumers deserve the most attention and the brand can take opportunities to reinforce the consumer connection to the brand. It can be subtle reminders such as Apple’s audio branding, the rings, clicks and other sounds from an iPhone or MacBook that they have the brand’s support. Give them tools for self-expression such as Heineken’s “Open Your World” campaign that encouraged users to print ‘U-Codes’ to share their own personal messages.9 Brands also must make sure there is a platform for loyalists to express themselves so the brand can learn from them and so they can influence others consumers who share their needs.

In Influence, the most important phase, the brand and consumer engage in a more meaningful way, during which they formalize how they have influenced each other as a result of their relationship. Real-time data implemented during the influence phase has the ability to drive innovation and ensure the brand is catering to its diverse consumer’s needs. Brands must ensure there is a platform for loyalists to express themselves so the brand can learn and so they can influence others. EOS Photochains is a great example of influence; the brand made a game out of photo sharing where users posted a photo and inspired the next photo based on the content of the original photo creating a ‘photochain.’10 After a brand establishes the influence bond with a consumer, the brand and consumer will evolve through the relationship, and influence each other in a meaningful way.


In this rapidly changing world, we must establish a strong bond with our consumers to address their diversity now and in the future. Global consumers are changing, and they are only going to become more diverse.

We are at a tipping point, where the consumer has a more powerful voice and higher expectations of the brands they interact with. There is increasing pressure, to adapt our marketing models, to be more flexible and fluid. As beauty marketers, we have an opportunity, with the evolution of personal communication technologies, to speak one-on-one with our consumers. The bonding helix is an adaptive and innovative model that embraces the diverse consumer, and is flexible, for future advances in technology.

This new marketing model will provide unique benefits to all stakeholders. For consumers, the model delivers value through messages that are targeted to their unique and individual needs. This model helps to give beauty marketers, a global perspective, increasing their cultural IQ. Data mined through the digital fingerprint provides beauty brands invaluable consumer insights. This new marketing paradigm will help marketers become more intelligent, efficient and agile in bonding with the diverse global consumer.


  1. D Burgos and M Ola, Marketing To the New Majority: Strategies for a Diverse World, Palgrave Macmillan, New York (2011)
  2. C Lennard, BRIC: Continued Domination of Global Beauty Sales, GCI Magazine.(Jul 13, 2011)
  3. Brand Butlers, (Apr 2010)
  4. J Berger and KL Milkman, Social Transmission and Viral Culture, (Feb 2010)
  5. Q&A: Consumer Loyalty after the Recession, (Aug 5, 2011)
  6. C Pring, 100 more social media statistics for 2012, (Feb 13, 2012)
  7. Ibid.
  8. Japan’s face-scanning vending machines, The Week, (Nov 22, 2010)
  9. Duncan, Heineken U-Code, The Inspiration Room, (Jan 11, 2012)
  10. Canon: EOS Photochain Explained, Creativity Online, (Jun 22, 2010)