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Saturday, 10 March 2012

Where the real problem is at ...

According to a new study that Marketing Week recently published, women want their cosmetics to work harder. They want a simpler, faster way to achieve the look that they want, (ie. instant pimple zapper, one step foundation, one step acne cream, etc.) and they want it to work fast. While the full (rather long) article can be read here, I'd like to put my own 2 cents in (again).

The article mentions that consumers are looking for three key things when it comes to beauty products and brands; multipurpose products, detailed information, and genuine celebrity endorsements. What intrigues me most here is the last point. What is it about celebrities that garners enough trust that we are willing to let them shape our decisions when we do everyday shopping at the store? I must admit, I'm guilty of trusting people I've never met (ever heard of Mike Holmes from 'Holmes Inspection'?) and I'm sure that I've let a celebrity shape my choice of product, but I honestly can't rationalize why. This got me thinking that if I can't rationalize why I do something, then why do I do it? When you think about it, what makes a celebrity different from a regular person that enables a person to put unearned faith in them?

The study briefly touched on the reasons people believe that they need these products, and it wasn't just the obvious:
According to 67% of respondents, being beautiful “helps you to get more out of life”.

I just had to bold that quote and put it all on its own, and not because I find it ridiculous. Guess what? It's borderline true. I have read so many studies that prove that physical attractiveness (for women in particular, but men too) enables a person to get a higher position at work, a better mate (duh) and helps people to feel more content. No wonder the beauty industry has such a hold on consumers! Its advertisements are simply a manipulation of an idea that society (and even Darwinian ideas of genetics) has enabled to become truth.

This got me thinking... to change the marketing of the beauty industry, we need to change what we have allowed to become truth. And to change that, we need to change the way our very society thinks and makes decisions.

That's one hell of a task.

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