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Make-up: "Deciphering and anticipating the expectations of generations Y and Z to create winning connections"

Considered key consumers, because of their purchases but also their influence, the under 35s - Millennials and Generation Z - receive special attention from make-up brands who are seeking to better understand their expectations and behaviours, often at odds with the codes of previous generations. For manufacturers, the understanding and, furthermore, the anticipations of new generations’ practices and rituals is the key to winning developments. IL Cosmetics, a European specialist in colour cosmetics, has equipped itself with marketing, decoding and development tools to offer brands products in line with the expectations of these generations.

When it comes to make-up, the youngest generations are leading the way! Millennials (Generation Y or digital natives), born between 1981 and 1997, have transformed the world of make-up in North America and Europe, by endorsing brands who have understood how to reach them via social networks, and offer them breakthrough products: NYX, Anastasia Beverly Hills, Too Faced, Glossier.

When it comes to make-up, Millennials ad Gen Z are leading the way. (Photo...

When it comes to make-up, Millennials ad Gen Z are leading the way. (Photo : IL Cosmetics)

Born after 1997, in an already highly digitalized world, the gen Z is emerging as the new challenge for the cosmetics industry. Ultra-connected, expert in communication, ultra-creative and eager for collaboration and inclusiveness, while asserting its individuality, this generation is instrumental to changing radically the way of addressing one’s self-image. Attentive to global issues, the Gen Z does not hesitate to state its convictions during protests against climate change for example, but also through its purchases by favouring brands with a crystal-clear commitment, in line with their values.

Digital, individuality and inclusiveness

Selfies, snapchats, Instagram posts and stories, digital natives and the gen Z live in a world of assertiveness. Explorers of alternatives, addicted to the most diverse online content, they move from one platform to the other, follow influencers, improve their beauty culture thanks to the tutorials, comments and tips of their peers.

Fashion and beauty brands are scrutinized and evaluated at high speed by generations who know they have gained a new influence. Always more demanding towards brands, they want products corresponding to their own definition of cosmetics and allowing to state one’s specific expression, but avoiding stereotypes and placing the emphasis on inclusiveness.

Decode and decrypt

"When it comes to make-up, decoding the consumption habits of these generations is vital for brands. For IL Cosmetics, as an industrial partner, it is a key element of our expertise in the world of make-up. Our mission is to help our customers understand, and even anticipate the needs of their consumers. This is why we created IL VIEW’R, a strategic tool to foster innovation from a new consumer perspective", underlines Aurélie Ignaccolo, Head of Marketing at IL Cosmetics, one of the European leaders in nail polish and make-up products based in Luxembourg.

To enrich its draft project beyond consumer panels, IL Cosmetics thus collaborates with beauty consultants and make-up artists. "It is both a question of complementing our expertise and of having a vision focused on consumer expectations," explains Aurélie Ignaccolo.

As part of IL VIEW’R, the Luxembourg Company offers a detailed analysis of the habits and expectations of consumers who are increasingly versatile, always more connected, more and more attached and attentive to the values expressed by brands. These expectations are connected to the DNA and positioning of brands.

A 360-degree approach that will very soon be enhanced by the exploitation of big data collected online, on social networks, in particular via Google Trends, thus offering an immediate knowledge of the evolution of consumer expectations. And to beef up this offer, new recruits will be joining the IL Cosmetics marketing team, with several profiles totally dedicated to the digital world.

"From these analyses we imagine and design technologies that boost the potential of products. What we offer is therefore much more than a technical expertise. In addition to this, our developments are based on our analysis and our vision of markets and supported by patented innovative technologies, by our knowledge of raw materials, formulation process and of our exclusive collaborations with experts. With IL VIEW’R we offer a real B2P (business to person) approach, which allows us to precisely define persona profiles, and thus better meet consumers’ expectations," stressed Aurélie Ignaccolo.

A winning approach

The IL Cosmetics method goes well beyond product development. Once the product has been launched, IL offers to analyse its interaction with consumers. Depending of results, new developments may be put forward, new lines of communication may be recommended. The objective is both to maximize the consumer experience and to generate new opportunities for innovation.

And the IL Cosmetics method is paying off! "Among the millennials’ favourite brands, there are customers for whom we have developed products, which are now emblematic," underlines the Marketing Director.

The Cosmetify platform ranks a number of key players that have best managed to meet the expectations of young generations. A number of brands for which consumers are showing strong interest (Google Trends data, mentions, commitments and followers on social networks), and "some of which are IL Cosmetics customers."

For the Luxembourg Company, this success is no coincidence but relies largely on the analysis and innovation tools allowing IL Cosmetics to detect emerging trends and anticipate the expectations of younger generations. "We can truly say that we are the ideal partner for the millennials’ favourite brands. Throughout 2020, the brands we work with will see an intensification of our efforts in understanding and getting a grasp of consumer expectations, particularly from the analysis of big data coming from social media. A service primarily focused on understanding the generations Y and Z,” concludes Aurélie Ignaccolo.

Vincent Gallon

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