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Marketing Matters: Professional Skin Care Comes Home

Olay realized that little room is available at point-of-purchase to explain to women the features and benefits of its products and wanted to take a proactive role in helping women with a customized routine suited to their needs.

By: Liz Grubow
Posted: August 5, 2008, from the August 2008 issue of GCI Magazine.

In the initial stages of product development, brand marketers determine what they believe is the best channel of distribution based on a number of factors, including product positioning, target audience and retail pricing structure. Often, they choose selective or exclusive distribution channels due to the nature of specialized selling efforts involved or the high retail price of the product. More recently though, there has been a noticeable trend for brand marketers to develop strategies that reach a broader audience spectrum.

In some cases, the product is a step-down version of what is found in exclusive boutiques or upscale department stores. Vera Wang, the legendary designer of couture bridal and ready-to-wear clothing, has committed to offering her designs to a broader audience.

From her flagship bridal salon on Madison Avenue to Simply Vera, Vera Wang products at Kohl’s and the Vera Wang Lavender line sold at retailers such as Nordstrom, she is fast becoming a household name.

Similarly, House of Chloé from Paris, France, has even gotten into the act, launching a line to reach a younger demographic, dubbed See by Chloé. This trend is growing rapidly across many categories and industries and is also taking shape in the skin care category with products such as in-home facial treatments and regimens that have trickled down from the professional level—both physician and pharmacy.

Physician Brands at Home

In our caseload, we have observed a number of physician brands making house calls with in-home skin care treatments and regimens from Patricia Wexler M.D. Dermatology, PerriconeMD Cosmeceuticals, Dr. Andrew Weil for Origins, Murad and MD Skincare by Dr. Dennis Gross.

Wexler’s extensive product line comprises an Anti-Aging Starter Kit, a Resurfacing Microbrasion System and a Glyco Peel System. PerriconeMD Cosmeceuticals feature exclusive patent-protected active ingredients in products such as Firming Neck Therapy, Ceramic Eye Smoother and Advanced Face Firming Activator.