The 25-year-old company, which late last year saw the departure of founder Bobbi Brown, is about to roll out a slew of marketing, influencer and product initiatives to attract a younger customer — starting with a reportedly seven-figure investment in a global influencer program and a lower priced lipstick range.
Sandra Main, global president of La Mer and Bobbi Brown, who stepped into the latter role in July, has been charged with reinvigorating The Estée Lauder Cos. Inc. brand. During an interview Tuesday morning at Bobbi Brown’s headquarters in SoHo here, Main was clear that the tenet Brown built her brand on — makeup as a way to enhance one’s natural beauty — won’t change.
“We’re going to be doing four to five times the investment in influencers and digital activations — starting now,” Main said, declining to give a dollar amount. “We’re not changing our philosophy. We’re not changing how we express ourselves — but the platforms that allow us to express ourselves are so much broader in today’s world that it gives us the opportunity to speak to a much larger community and for that community to speak on our behalf, as well.”
Bobbi Brown, which was built on a singular point of view and voice, will for the first time leverage influencers to help create a collective perspective and build an online community. To promote the launch of its new Crushed Lip Color, the brand flew in 25 influencers from 16 global markets for a “girl crush” themed three-day event, Crushing it in NYC with Bobbi Brown. The festivities kicked off Sept. 4
Billed as a “lipstick with the feel of a balm,” Crushed lipstick’s $29 price point is about 17 percent less than the luxe lip category average. It’s the first of three items that will roll out in the next year that will be 15 to 20 percent cheaper than the existing collection, according to Main, including a complexion product in January and another item in the lip group next fall. No prices of current products will change.
The impetus for “Tier 0” pricing, Main explained, is to appeal to a younger customer where they shop, with an emphasis on multibrand specialty stores. The average age of Bobbi Brown’s consumer is 38, but she hopes these launches skew more toward an “older Millennial,” or someone in their late 20s to 35 years old.