05 February 2007

Hitting All the Marketing Bases

Suppose you were going to market a commodity product, aimed at older teenage, and young adult women. Would you make it organic? Good for the planet? Celebrity endorsed? Donations to charity? A gift that keeps on giving (aside from an STD)?

Sephora, a cosmetic company, has hit all the bases with a new product line that taps into what I could only describe as the collective zeitgeist of young women. The only thing missing, I suppose, is a way to get that recalcitrant boyfriend to call. Or text. Or whatever.

Have a look at Sephora's CARGO PlantLove Botanical Lipstick for sheer marketing genius.
A lipstick tube made entirely out of corn - a renewable and abundant resource. This environmentally-friendly innovation also emits less greenhouse gases, which many scientists believe to be the major cause of global warming. The outer carton is made of flower paper embedded with real flower seeds. Simply moisten, plant, and wait for a bouquet of wild flowers to grow!

CARGO is donating two dollars from the sale of every shade to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. The PlantLove™ seeds we sow today affect future generations so we are investing in the earth and our children for the future of the planet!

Bonus: Five of these gorgeous lipsticks were designed by your favorite celebrities: Evangeline: Evangeline Lily; Lindsay: Lindsay Lohan; Maria: Maria Menounos; Mariska: Mariska Hargitay; Sarah: Sarah Chalke
As I said, sheer marketing genius... or the ultimate in marketing cynicism. If you believe in reversal, as I do, specifically that the people as a collective create the brand (you have noticed a theme over the last few posts, haven't you?), this over-the-top combination may backfire on Sephora as the collective wisdom of aware young women begin to understand what is being done to them.

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