Online Exclusive: Special Delivery

The focus is now on the experience—or perceived experiential element—that a brand or product can give.

By Sophie Maxwell, Pearlfisher

Sophie Maxwell, Pearlfisher
We have become a society obsessed with experiences and how we “live in the moment.” And with our brands, the focus is no longer on the product or service but on the experience—or perceived experiential element—that the brand or product can give. Generally this experience has been about a crowd or shared initiative. From new social media initiatives such as She Said Beauty to Chanel’s Pop-Up Beauty Boutique, it is hard to keep pace with all that is happening…

And while these initiatives for the masses are immensely blog-worthy, I believe that we are now starting to see a shift back to focusing on individual needs and wants.

The Curve Liquid Eyeliner by NYX
Brands will need to look at just how they can immerse us in the brand and nurture and enrich the personal experience on a more meaningful and one-to–one level.

Personalized delivery and subscription services—such as Glossybox and Sephora’s same-day delivery service—are gaining momentum with the sense of expectation serving to heighten the experiential element associated with the brand. Elsewhere, new luxury beauty experiences are matching supreme indulgence with a unique and individually tailored aesthetic. For example, for a limited period only, London’s Goring Hotel took consumers from London to the rest of the world with a Molton Brown personalized bathing menu.

However, creating an experience within the brand architecture of the package itself—through the graphics, structure or copy—is more of a challenge. But this is where the true connection of product performance and brand buy-in lies.

And it’s surely why there has been such a lot of noise about the NYX The Curve Liquid Eyeliner—“an innovative, ergonomic shape that makes applying liquid liner mistake-proof”. The strapline reads “where beauty meets function,” but I think that the really interesting shift is now maybe being steered by the tools and devices sector as a few innovative brands reposition their offer from function to beauty.

Traditionally these devices—such as skin cleansing systems and brushes—have leaned towards a generic look and offer. But

Tria Beauty's newly designed skincare tool.
now some of the established professional spa brands are going back to their roots and looking for new ways to heighten the personal connection and experiential offer. One route is to link with complementary beauty brands as with the Clarisonic Mia2 Sonic Skin Cleansing With Boscia Set.

But essentially, to have any sort of real and personal connection, we need to fully experience brands from the outset and this has to start with an identity which defines the brand’s behavior and personality in the eyes of the consumer.

Tria Beauty has recently undergone a redesign. And it is the evolution of the new identity that is most striking and which now reflects the nature of the skin perfecting light based technology—and strapline— to “own” light. The design features one long strip of moving light that forms a continuous spectrum of color. This becomes an “ownable” brand motif and works across the packaging for all therapies when ranged on shelf.

There is no denying that indulging in the trend for a one-off “outrageous” beauty treatment is exciting and memorable. But so, too, is maximizing the up close and personal experience—and the realization that finding ways to inject a new sense of discovery and delivery can be just as intense and emotive.

About the author:
Sophie Maxwell is insight director at Pearlfisher;;