Friday, December 7, 2012

CH. 7 Business Marketing


Sephora is such a huge success mostly because of their business-to-business electronic commerce, Sephora turned to EPAM (NYSE:EPAM), a leading provider of complex software engineering solutions and a leader in IT service delivery to launch website.  This initiative builds a solid foundation for our partnership with Sephora, enabling us to deliver the next generation of cross-channel, user-centric e-commerce experiences," said Valeri Makovik, Vice President, Technology Solutions of EPAM Systems, and head of EPAM's E-Commerce Center. This new move by Sephora gives them the competitive advantage because this ecommerce website is the first of its kind.

An excellent interview from Brian Solis with Julie Bornstein SVP of Digital at Sephora

Sephora showed its stickiness on the web with staggering numbers, Sephora bills its website as the world's largest beauty store, with 13 million visitors each month. About 20 percent of that traffic comes from people browsing on their iPhones, Bornstein said, and sales through the iPhone have grown "in the triple digits" for the past two years. The iPad drives about half that much traffic to the online store, she said, but iPad users spend more money.

Sephora’s strategic alliance include J.C Penny ,while it’s positioned itself as the ultimate beauty expert, Sephora isn’t above aligning itself with leaders in other industries to strengthen its own brand position. The first major synergistic relationship it formed was with the J.C. Penney department store chain, creating a “store-within-a-store” retail concept that positions each Penney’s Sephora in the center core of the store, staffed by Sephora consultants. This offensive strategic move indicated the cosmetics giant wasn’t content to passively compete with the department-store cosmetics counter across the mall aisles,it was ready to invade and vanquish from within.
Loyalty isn't something that brands create, it's something that consumers grant based on trust.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

CH. 8  Segmenting and Targeting Markets

Sephora’s market segment are women between ages 20- 40, these are women with a demand for skincare and cosmetics to fulfill their needs. Sephora’s in store design indicates several target markets including women and men. Specific sections of the store show pictures of women of all cultures from 20-30, 30-40, 40-50+ and men 20-40+. The segment of women attracted to Sephora would be those who value fashionable/quality skincare, beauty, and fragrance products and are open to a medium to high price range. Also, there are product sections with richly decorated cosmetics that would appeal to young girls (pre-teen to teenager). The black and white colors of the store allow for the customer’s focus to be on the products and letting the products stand out and speak for themselves. The wide assortment of brands, vendor exclusives, and private label combinations would attract any shoppers looking for variety.

As far as Sephora’s geographic segmentation, Sephora tends to carry more of a brand or product that is in high demand in the particular country that Sephora stores are located; for instance, in France women tend to use more skin care than American women, so you would find more skincare products in stores located in France. Sehpora’s demographic segmentation tends to be young and middle aged women, with a relatively stable amount of income that can afford to buy their high end products. These women are typically from different ethnic groups and cultures.
What makes Sephora stand out from the rest is their “one to one marketing.” The loyalty card program was valuable in helping to identify a select group of repeat in-store customers and their preferences, Sephora was rapidly coming up against the limits of using a marketing database managed by a third party. Seeking to gain more timely access to the specific buying habits and behavior of its customer base, and the ability to effectively identify links between online and in-store shoppers, Sephora took its database in-house and developed its own customer-centric marketing program to assist in driving sales across channels and building better, more personalized customer relationships.

Sephora Shopper

Sephora Manhattan 

Katie Holmes with daughter Suri 
Sephora Manhattan

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Ch. 11 - Developing and Managing Products

Sephora’s new product strategy include Disney’s “ Cinderella” collection by Sephora. This collection is a brand new innovative product that women, identifies with from their childhood.  At some point in their life every little girl dreams about being a Disney princess. The beautiful castle, handsome prince charming and happily ever after, is all too enchanting to not believe all the magic will happen in the future. Then, you grow up, reality sets in, and you realize life is not a big fairytale; yet, you can still always dream. And, what better way to channel your childhood princess memories than by using makeup? SEPHORA and Disney Consumer Products have teamed up to create a series of beauty collections focused on the individual style, personality and story of a featured Disney Princess. This fall, they have chosen to focus on Cinderella with a collection of color cosmetics, fragrances and accessories inspired by the 1950 Disney classic animated film “Cinderella.” During its initial test market early fall, the collection sold out within hours on Sephora’s website. With names like Midnight Hour and Moonlit Kiss, the colors in the makeup palette evoke the wintry feel of the movie, while being whimsical and dreamy. This collection is limited. 

                                Disney's "Cinderella"collection by Sephora

                      Storylook Eyeshadow Palette

              Midnight Hour Eye Shadow Palette

                     Compact Mirror


                                    Moonlit Kiss Lipstick Set

                  A Brush With Fate Nail Polish Set


                So This Is Love... 1.7 oz Eau de Parfum Spray 


Sunday, November 25, 2012

      Ch. 16 -  Integrated Marketing Communications

Sephora has made a name for itself as one of the most actively engaging brands in the industry by emphasizing its customer-loyalty program and giving in-store customers hands-on access to all of its products. Sephora was one of the first beauty marketers to embrace online initiatives and eagerly continues to take advantage of new technologies.
To publicize their company even more Sephora  uses the channel of Print advertising  such as the brand’s seasonal catalogs still have a very important place within Sephora’s marketing advertising strategy, but digital advertising is quickly gaining ground as an effective way to reach on-the-go consumers. Sephora aims to give clients easy access to beauty information by utilizing and combing all available marketing outlets, including targeted E-mails, Facebook and Twitter pages, an iPhone app and a mobile website.
Sephora also uses personal selling as a chance to interact with a customer, by letting a makeup artist explain how the makeup is used and what exactly is suitable for the client, so the client is influenced to buy as much products as the client needs.
Sephora communicates with their consumers through mass communication such as E-mail, Facebook, Twitter, Sephora apps and their website. Also Sephora communicates interpersonally with their customers by having them come into stores and asking as many questions they like with no limitations. Advancing technology in the world has allowed Sephora to reach unprecedented heights in consumer engagement, and has provided tangible customer feedback for future marketing and product development.
Clients have  submitted more than 1 million product reviews on and 1.2 million Sephora Facebook fans engage with the company each day.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

CH. 10 – Product Concepts

 Sephora is a unique concept that keeps on reinventing the desire to live beauty since 1970. It excels at finding creative brands, highlighting trends, shaping aesthetic codes and administering tailor-made advice. It offers freedom to stroll, feel, and experiment. It stimulates emotion by initiating the pleasure of learning, combined with the discovery of a unique shopping experience. With its original products, innovative services and daring communication, Sephora constantly celebrates audacity whilst paving the way for modernity. Sephora usually focuses on “shopping product” which is a product that requires comparison shopping because it is usually more expensive than a convenience product that is found in fewer stores. There is brand loyalty to many of the brands that Sephora sells in stores and online, where as customers tend to favor one brand over the other, Sephora has this advantage because they carry a huge variety of brands thus satisfying all their customers.Sephora carries its own cosmetic line in stores and online, along with other globally recognized brands. Sephora carries hundreds of luxury brands, some of the globally recognized  luxury brands that are sold by Sephora are, Lancôme, Yves Saint Laurent, TARINA TARANTINO, Urban Decay, Make up Forever, Hourglass, Korres, LORAC, llamasqua, Guerlain, Clinique, Benefit Cosmetics.

                                 MAKE UP FOREVER

                                             YVES SAINT LAURENT


                                                          URBAN DECAY 


Sunday, October 28, 2012

Ch. 18 - Sales Promotion and Personal Selling

The tools that are used by Sephora for consumer sales promotion are often coupons, online sales promotion, point-of-purchase display, sampling and their beauty insider loyalty program Sephora, a leader in the beauty business uses many sales promotion activities to stay ahead of the game. Sephora uses consumer sales promotion which is targeted to the ultimate consumer market. The types of consumers that Sephora targets are loyal consumers, brand switchers and price buyers., a client loyalty program as a way of thanking clients with special products, exclusive information, and an all-access pass to personalized beauty. Sephora offers online promotion codes, which consumers can use on the company’s website to get discounts, free shipping and exclusive gifts. Sephora also sets up point-of-purchase display, which is set up the store to advertise specific products and induce impulse buying. 

free online promo code

point of purchase display

The Sephora Beauty Insider is a rewards program that offers customers coupons, discounts, and points (to redeem for deluxe size samples) for frequent buyers. The program is available to all Sephora customers and is free for sign-up. Each dollar spent is equal to one point, every one hundred points offers a free "deluxe" sample-size product (from a luxury brand). There is also a 500 point redemption level, which usually consists of a boxed set of multiple samples. Beauty Insider members also receive sample-size gifts on their birthday. When a member spends $350 in one calendar year, they are upgraded to a Very Important Beauty Insider membership (V.I.B.) and will retain that status throughout the following year. 


Sunday, October 21, 2012

Ch. 17 - Advertising and Public Relations 

When you're a product company that sells in a highly competitive market like the beauty industry, you focus on impeccable service. Sephora specializes in selling higher-priced cosmetics and fragrances in ways intended to be significantly different from the conventional methods of department stores. For instance, at Sephora's 219 stores in Europe and the United States, products are arranged alphabetically rather than segregated by manufacturer, the popular promotional tool known as ''gift with purchase'' has been eliminated and customers are encouraged to sample items like lipstick, eye shadow etc. Sephora uses massive advertising campaigns to further exceed their impressive sales. Sephora also uses product advertising, which publicize the benefits of specific products.  
In one of their product advertisement Sephora used a rather suggestive image to highlight the benefits of an anti aging product line “Super” by Dr. Nicholas Perricone. Some may argue that the image was inappropriate for young women who initially the advertisement was aimed at for preventing aging; but at it proves time and time again sex sells.
Suggestive ad 

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Ch. 15 - Retailing


Sephora stores are owned by Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy (LVMH), the world's leading luxury goods group. Sephora operates approximately 1,300 stores in 27 countries worldwide, with an expanding base of over 300 stores across North America. I recently visited Sephora in Union Square Manhattan and it was a delightful experience the staff was very friendly and helpful. The sales associate/ makeup artist, all wore black this is the color of their uniform because Sephora wants the make up vibrant colors to stand out on the staff. I did not feel hovered over at all, I was given my space to browse the store and if I had a question the sales associate/ makeup artist was always willing to help.The store had a lot of shoppers, a lot of enthusiastic women eyeing the products they wanted to purchase.  The store was quite spacious and well organized; it had a very light airy feel to it not clustered at all. The store was well lit, and the color theme was basically the classic black and white, no bright and abrasive colors. 

There were a huge variety of high end brands of makeup and skin care to choose from. Some of the brands that are available for purchase are Makeup- Forever, Urban Decay, Too Faced, Bobbi Brown and Stilla just to name a few . There were testers for all the products in the store complete with sanitary stations at every display. The main focus of the store was their “Beauty Station” where I could see women getting makeovers, I could see makeup artists explaining how to use the products and giving the customer their individual attention. The store had approximately 20+ employees, I would say a bit understaffed, based on the amount of women waiting in line to get their makeup done at the beauty station.

Overall it was a wonderful shopping experience, I frequent Sephora stores a lot especially the stores located in Queens and I can say that it is always a pleasure shopping there. The staffs are always very helpful and kind, never fussy or arrogant. Sephora never disappoints, they anticipate their customers every needs and I am truly a satisfied customer.

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Ch. 6 - Consumer Decision Making

Sephora thrives as the leading cosmetic retailer in North America because Sephora has always adopted the policy of putting consumer satisfaction first, and allowing consumers to make an informed decision when purchasing a product. Consumers are free to browse the company’s website and learn about products through consumer reviews. Consumers are given the freedom to post their review of a product they had purchased, whether good or bad. Thousands of reviews are posted daily onto the website, giving other consumers insight as to how a product performs and enabling them to make an informed decision on whether to purchase the product or not. On Sephora’s website, professionally produced videos called "Sephora TV" are posted to inform consumers how products work; all demonstrations are done by a professional makeup artist of the respective brand. 
Also Beauty Talk” a tab on the website offers expert advice to consumers through a beauty forum where women can ask any beauty related questions and get expert answers from professionals in the beauty industry. On the forum consumers can get expert skincare and makeup advice in order to help them make the best decision as to which product is right for them. Sephora goes above and beyond to keep their customers happy and informed, because they know that a happy customer is a loyal costumer. Sephora’s website also have a tab “Hot Now”, which tells consumers what product is trendy right now which give consumers suggestions, rich visual content, and explanations of products from the consumer’s perspective. Having these features on the website provides value to consumers through access to information and visuals.

What sets apart sephora from its competitors is their ability to track customers buying habits. The company collects data from the company’s website and consumer’s beauty insider loyalty card to determine which brand of products that each consumer buys. The company then uses this information to target specific campaigns and promotions to certain consumers, thus better serving its customers and also increasing the effectiveness of their marketing strategy.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Ch. 5 - Developing a Global Vision

 Sephora’s global marketing approach has paved the way for their overall immense success. Sephora has revolutionized the global beauty business. Sephora operates approximately 1,300 stores in 27 countries worldwide including:

  • China                                                
  • Italy                                                   
  • Mexico                                             
  • Brazil                                                
  • Canada                                            
  • USA                                                  
  • Portugal                                            
  • Greece
  • Polska
  • España
  • Türkiye
  • Česká Republika
  • France
  • Nederlands
  • Románia

Sephora has an expanding base of over 300 stores across North America. The first U.S. store was opened in New York in 1998, its first Canadian store in Toronto in 2004. Sephora's North American headquarters is located in San Francisco, with corporate offices in New York and Montreal.

Individual attention to customers is key Sephora’s success all over the globe, and the company’s marketing team takes a multichannel approach to delivering it. Sales consultants trained in skincare, haircare, makeup, fragrance and general beauty know-how are on hand to help in the stores. Email and web marketing, via and Facebook, reinforce and continue the personal attention that customers receive in Sephora’s uniquely designed stores. Sephora realized early on identifying individual 
tastes and preferences play a critical role in securing customer loyalty all over the world. Sephora has one of the savviest and most sophisticated customer relationship management programs to be found in any industry.


Sunday, September 23, 2012

Ch. 4 - The Marketing Environment

Sephora's number one priority has always been customer satisfaction; and so they have implemented a number of steps to ensure their customers are always happy and satisfied with their shopping experience. Further expanding the Sephora experience, for instance in 2009-10 Sephora realized that smart phones and other similar devices were here to stay. They also realized that customers wanted product reviews and were spending more time online. Sephora designed “Sephora to Go,” a mobile friendly website that can be accessed by  the majority of smart phones. Heavily  accessed by thousands of customers, “Sephora to Go” offers product reviews and ratings on all their products. Sephora continued to harness the power of technology  by creating a “Sephora to Go” iPhone application in October 2010. Earning 4.5 stars by users on iTunes, the iPhone app further expands the “Sephora to Go” mobile site by  offering customers the ability  to purchase products, view and purchase new products, view special mobile offers, get advice from other Sephora fans on Facebook, watch videos, access product ratings and reviews, look up past purchases, create a gift registry, and scan product barcodes to quickly pull up product information. 

Finally, in July 2011, Sephora completed the design and distribution of their iPad application.The iPad app was a smart decision on behalf Sephora because unlike their mobile website or iPhone app, it “features live beauty news from Sephoraʼs Facebook and Twitter feeds, its Beauty Talk community.