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Thursday, August 16, 2012

The craft of marketing

I picked to write about Lush in this article on the marketing craft because they are so good at it.  Sometimes I think that not only do I lack imagination but I don't get other people's imaginative ideas either, like Lush's gorilla perfume.  Here are the names of some of their Gorilla perfumes (solid perfumes):

Breath of God
Yuzu (Japanese fruit)
the smell of freedom

Could someone explain to me why those names would be appealing when they tell you absolutely nothing about the scent of the perfume.  I would so love to understand this type of marketing.  Is it just that the names are so catchy?

Here are some of the names they use for their bath bombs (nothing catchy in front of the term bath bombs).

golden slumbers
bon bomb
geo phyzz
sex bomb
dragon's egg
fizz o therapy
honey bee
mrs whippy
fairy jasmine
space girl
phoenix rising
tisty tosty
the sicillian
fluffy egg

Could it be that these names conjure up curiosity or that it just sounds interesting?

They also have a product called bubble bars.  It's kind of like bubble bath except in solid form.  You crumble it under running water just like you would pour bubble bath under running water.  I would also like to know if people really want scents like sea weed and fresh cut grass?  Maybe it's just that I am an old foggy but I always thought of scents that were appealing to be floral or fruity.

Here is an excerpt from their web site describing one of their products:  "Love the smell of warm milk with a bit of added spice? Hot Milk comforts with orange and patchouli essential oils and soothing coconut milk. Its delicate bubbles envelop you like a favorite old blanket then it wraps you up nice and warm and sends you off to bed with a big hug and a huge smile on your face. Soak in its frothy waters, slip into your favorite jammies and fall into your fluffy bed. Repeat nightly."

Does warm milk really have a distinct scent to anyone who doesn't have a really sensitive nose?  Plus I am really wondering about the bubbles wrapping you up nice and warm and sending you off to bed with a big hug and huge smile.  Do bubbles hug you?  I just never thought of things in this fashion being a big old pragmatist.  I can certainly see though how these types of imaging terms can be very appealing.

Lush says fresh handmade cosmetics, does powdered milk need to be fresh? They also like to talk about vegan and essential oils but honey is not considered vegan friendly.  Do chemicals need to be fresh? I have heard that baking soda does (sodium bicorbonate) but chemicals like the ever dreaded sodium laureth sulfate (a foaming agent, detergent and surfactant which means it stabilizes a mixture of oil and water or easier to understand it keeps the oil and water from separating), lauryl betaine (commonly found in body cleansers, shampoo and bubble bath, known to work well with water and removing dirt and oiliness), cocoamide DEA (another foaming agent used in soaps and an emulsifying agent as well) or limonene (an oil found in citrus peels, so not sure why they can't just list that as orange oil), linalool (this one is found in many plants and is generally used for scent), benzyl salicylate (used as a flavoring agent, as a fragrance ingredient and an ultraviolet light absorber), hydroxyoitronellol (an ingredient in fragrances found in Lime, Lemon, Sweet Orange, Petigrain, Sandalwood, Tangerine and Ylang ylang essential oils), citronellol (also used in perfumery and insect repellents), geraniol (commonly used in flavors and is also an effective plant based mosquito repellent as well plus also used in perfumery).  Some other chemicals they use include titanium dioxide (primarily used as a pigment and a sunscreen), iridescent sparkles(obviously just pretty sparkles), and what's up with listing perfume as an ingredient?  Does that mean they combine some synthetic perfume with their oils and why does the ingredients list often say oils not essential oil of?  THERE IS A DIFFERENCE BETWEEN AN OIL AND AN ESSENTIAL OIL

Of course they also use the body safe colors that are either D&C or FD&C colors, but isn't there something all natural that can create vibrant and beautiful colors.  Plus I have to admit I do not understand why people want their Bath and Beauty products to have beautiful colors.  I also wonder why so many of their products have gardenia extract.  Plus do most people really like the scent of patchouli?  I have heard it's scent gets better with age.

I checked out their toners and the price for one of them was 3.3 fl oz. is $8.95 and 8.4 oz is $19.95 (tea tree, juniperberry and grapefruit waters plus limonene and methylparaben and of course perfume.  I easily found the reviews for this one but you have to scroll down (and maybe select a size) to find the list of ingredients.

So my final question is does the market really demand that their products look gorgeous and smell wonderful and be fun or are there people who buy products just because they believe in the "all natural ingredients" or "environmentally safe" products, or even support the handmade industry?  Or have these things just become catch phrases that people use like the word organic which the law then cracked down on and created a strict system of documentation and inspections before businesses could use the term organic.

1 comment:

  1. In response to your final question: I think it can depend and this is why. When we have a business we target a specific audience and we should be talking to them, always to them. We can occasionally be hitting a wider market, but really, you should only be concerned about the people who love the type of product you are selling. So, the long and short of it, determine your product benefits and then determine your audience and ignore the rest. This method works beautifully!