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Safety First for Baby Skin Care

Posted: August 28, 2008, from the April 2007 issue of GCI Magazine.

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At the point-of-purchase, brands need to create a simple system for consumers to locate the appropriate products for their children’s skin needs. “For baby skin care, helping new parents find and use appropriate products quickly and easily is key. The Mustela line is color coded, unifying all Daily Hygiene, Bath Time, Skin Protection, Diaper Change and Sun Protection lines according to the color found on each package. These groupings are maintained at point-of-purchase so parents can find what they need in an instant,” said Infusino.

Adult consumers choose products differently for themselves than for their children. Often, what draws them to the product may be the packaging or a gift with purchase. Their choice may have little to do with the product itself. “At point-of-purchase, for parents, what’s most important about skin care products for their baby is communication. What is the product for and, in some cases, why is the product needed?” said Infusino.

Parents expect this education to continue at the point-of-purchase, and will gravitate toward companies that provide educational information, safe and effective products and skin care advice. Point-of-purchase education goes beyond in-store retail to include Internet shopping sites. Johnson & Johnson’s Web site includes tips for new parents on a variety of concerns, including sleeping through the night and skin care. Mustela USA offers expert advice for new parents regarding skin care both during and after pregnancy. vedaPure provides a blog, newsletter and advice from Geary. Additionally, these sites serve as points-of-purchase for customers. “Growth in the category will come from better informed parents who will select products that meet the special needs of their baby’s skin,” said Infusino.

A brand builds a relationship with its consumers by personalizing the shopper’s experience. For example, Love Me Baby Me’s founder Rosemary Anthony invested five years in product development, personalizing her brand’s story with her own experiences as a parent of a child with sensitive skin.

When a parent finds the appropriate product, the packaging must contribute to the consumer’s ease of use. Parents are looking for products packaged to fit the job of bathing children. “Mustela makes sure that the packaging of a new product is easy and practical to use for the comfort of parents, especially for bath time products, when the parent usually has only one hand to get the product as she is holding the baby with the other,” said Infusino. Packaging, while appealing to parents, must also appeal to children, through colorful statements and illustrations. Great packaging notwithstanding, the ultimate deciding factor for the consumer may be the price point.

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