CPNA sat down with Total Beauty Media Group’s head of marketing, Ethelbert Williams, to get a pulse on latest trends around how women are shopping across platforms as well as uncover helpful insights to how brands and retailers can win over the female shopper.
1) First, happy new year to you! As we’ve just closed out this very aggressive retail season, what are some conclusions you saw across the retail landscape?
The holiday shopping season just wrapped up and it’s clear 2012 was the year of multi-screen retailing, an opportunity to engage the shopper with the best contact (screen) in the right context. Mobile screens clearly drove this trend to a tipping point. While the majority of women still prefer to shop within a physical retail environment, Total Beauty Media Group’s research found women consulting at least two relevant retail websites prior to stepping foot in a store. Within the beauty category, women spent on average 20 minutes researching products for their shopping trip online in advance. She’s coming to shelf prepared with her smartphone attached to her arm with 60 percent of women consulting their phones to check prices, product information and last minute coupons or incentives. The tiny screen is proving to be a powerful ally for brands and retailers looking to own the entire shopping journey.
2) Mobile seems like a big opportunity. Where will this channel take us in the near year?
Mobile will continue to grow as a relevant channel for consumers to research as well as transact across categories. The device will evolve to a natural extension for how she is already researching, finding what works for her and ultimately integrating the channel into her busy lifestyle. Total Beauty Media Group’s research found that Millennials are the core consumer leading the m-commerce direction with 64 percent of consumers who own a smart phone have also installed a commerce related shopping app!
3) Many brands and retailers have a lot of work to do to figure out their mobile strategies. What other trends do you see important for these players to stay on top of in 2013 to be remain relevant with shoppers?
Video and socially driven commerce: These are two trends that are extremely relevant, especially within beauty – a visual and socially charged category. Total Beauty Media Group just released a 2013 research study What Women Watch that looks at women’s latest habits and practices around video consumption and how certain video formats are most relevant to her brand choices. The differences are striking when you look at some of these behaviors across age profiles. As a result, brands must understand that not all consumers are the same here. For example, we found that the Young Boomer consumer segment does most of her video viewing in the morning, before her hectic day kicks in with work and family. Millennials happily snack on video content throughout their day while on the go. A third of these consumers engage in more than 30 minutes of digital video content daily! Younger consumers are also incredibly enthralled in on-demand content with YouTube being a channel leader. 60 percent are subscribed to at least one channel and not surprisingly, beauty and women’s lifestyle is a leading category.
Ethelbert Williams is the Head of Marketing for Total Beauty Media Group. He leads trade marketing, network audience growth, and distribution opportunities. Ethelbert’s brand marketing experiences span some of the largest global beauty corporations in the world, including Procter & Gamble and L’Oreal Paris. He was also a brand manager on the Axe male grooming business at Unilever. While at Starcom MediaVest Group, Ethelbert drove integrated marketing communications planning for a range of multinational brands. He holds a BS from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern University.
About Total Beauty Media Group
Founded in 2007, Total Beauty Media Group operates TotalBeauty.com, home of the largest database of independent, unbiased beauty product reviews for women. TotalBeauty.com features hundreds of thousands of user-generated reviews, spanning more than 55,000 products, including most known prestige, mass-market, salon and spa products. In addition, the site publishes daily editorial coverage of beauty news and trends, including TotalBeauty.com TV – its immense library of beauty how-to videos.
Total Beauty Media Group’s portfolio of digital beauty, health and lifestyle media properties includes: TotalBeauty.com, BeautyRiot.com, LimeLife.com and ModernMan.com. Total Beauty Media Group is backed by USVP and Wallington Investments and based in Santa Monica, Calif. For more information about Total Beauty Media Group, visit TotalBeautyMedia.com.