Better R&D and marketing collaboration will lead to better new products. If teams are to create products faster, better and smarter, they must improve their agility and communication – both internally, with marketing and technical staff, and externally, with partners such as suppliers, independent labs and contract manufacturers. This is particularly critical in the age of fast beauty.
“Faster Beauty: Decoding Product Development for Marketers and R&D,” an intensive education seminar and mini-workshop at in-cosmetics North America, addresses these issues with real-world insights into product development choke points and common challenges, as well as hands-on exercises.
The personal care industry launches about 20,000 products each year. And while consumers are looking for newness, it’s not always enough. As Karen Young, CEO of The Young Group, has long stressed, the beauty industry has trained the consumer and retailer to always look for the new. But keeping up is difficult.
A brand has just four seconds to attract a consumer. How can brands succeed? By innovating. If your company doesn’t innovate, someone else’s will. Brands have to create better products fast and be proactive in developing projects.
As a result, marketing teams should be providing R&D groups with feedback on what is happening in the marketplace, particularly regarding how consumers’ lives are changing and what trends are impacting retail. Marketing should also study competition in all distribution channels, seeking patterns.
Nimble marketing and R&D should be identifying white spaces and bringing in new technologies to fill them. Teams must assemble and set priorities quickly. Of course, as Young has noted, it is often easier for smaller companies to move faster than their larger counterparts, which is precisely why large players so often acquire smaller innovators. Small teams have fewer layers of decisionmakers hindering creativity.
Marketing is also crucial in creating compelling stories with emotional connections. People remember stories, Young has noted. If brands tell stories rather than merely making claims, consumers will remember and connect with them.
As speaker Mark Chandler, president of ACT Solutions Corp., has explained, R&D can also play a role in forging emotional connections with consumers. Connecting with the target consumer requires a mix of marketing aesthetics and performance. If shoppers like a product and feel it truly performs, they’re bound to use it more often.
To assist R&D, marketing should provide a brand strategy that delivers growth, with clear R&D priorities for products, technologies and categories that are aligned with consumers’ needs. Each product should be accompanied by a detailed product profile. Meanwhile, R&D should be identifying creative new technologies, ingredients, delivery systems and textures, Young has noted. They must also manage the process through product testing and packaging, safety testing, clinical trials and regulatory awareness.
Content provided by Jeb Gleason-Allured, who is Editor in Chief at Global Cosmetics Industry magazine, and will present on ‘Faster Beauty: Decoding Product Development for Marketers and R&D’ at in-cosmetics North America on 18th October 2018 from 10.00-11.00.