BEAUTY CARE

When it comes to health and beauty purchases, social influence trumps TV ads

BY DSN STAFF

MT. KISCO, N.Y. — Increasingly, social media is leveling the playing field for small- and mid-sized brand marketers, opening new, more affordable and more effective avenues to communicate with consumers versus such traditional media as TV and radio. And new research suggests the balance of power already may be tipping in favor of social marketing, particularly in certain categories and definitely among certain consumers.

According to a survey of more than 1,500 U.S. adults ages 18 years and older — conducted in May by VeraQuest on behalf of marketing/public relations firm Robin Leedy & Associates — consumers said that friends and TV are equal in terms of their ability to influence an over-the-counter or a health and beauty product purchase (49%).

Factor in the influence of such social networking sites as Facebook (7%) — really just another way to measure “friends” — and the impact of social influence is even more significant. “The socially wired world is emergently and unmistakably impactful,” said RL&A president Robin Russo. “This is undoubtedly significant for all the companies that don’t have robust TV ad budgets, or any budget, for advertising, at all.”

A deeper dive into the research revealed that the influence of friends is even more pronounced among women (52%) — particularly among women ages 30 to 49 years (55%), and even higher among women ages 18 to 29 years (58%).

“In the new world of social networks, it makes sense that friends’ opinions are growing in importance,” Russo said. “And that is a compelling reason for brands to market on Facebook, Twitter and the like, where consumers become immediate brand ambassadors spreading their influence to all those in their sphere of social influence and engagement.”

The third biggest influence of OTC and HBA purchases overall was spouses/partners (36%); however, this differs sharply among men (45%) versus women (27%). A look at other key influencers suggested that, in general, digital media trumps traditional media, including online product reviews (27%) versus consumer magazine ads (24%); online articles (16%) versus newspaper articles (13%); and online video (7%) versus radio messaging (3%).

Blog reviews are another area that ranked as sources of greater influence among younger women (14% of women ages 30 to 39 years versus 6% overall).

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HairMax LaserComb Lux 9 OKed to treat female pattern hair loss

BY Antoinette Alexander

NEW YORK — Lexington has received clearance from the Food and Drug Administration for marketing the HairMax LaserComb Lux 9 to treat female pattern hair loss, the manufacturer has announced.

"Hair loss among women is a growing concern," said Matt Leavitt, medical adviser to Lexington. "In the past, women had only one FDA-approved drug ingredient to treat their hair loss. Now they have a clinically proven viable alternative. Upon review of Lexington’s extensive clinical studies on female hair loss, the FDA has granted clearance to this exciting new treatment option. I believe [that] HairMax will be able to offer help to the millions of women suffering from hair loss."

The last hair-loss treatment for women to be approved by the FDA was minoxidil, which came to market for females in 1988. HairMax now is the first nondrug, home-use, over-the-counter medical device cleared to treat the estimated 80 million men and women suffering from hereditary hair loss.

What causes female hair loss? Such factors as:

  • Aging;

  • Changes in the levels of androgens (hormones). For example, after reaching menopause, many women find that the hair on their head is thinner, while the hair on their face is coarser;

  • Family history of male or female pattern baldness; and

  • Damaged hair due to coloring or chemical straightening treatments.

What are the signs of female pattern hair loss? Hair thinning is different from that of male pattern baldness. In female pattern baldness:

  • Hair thins mainly on the top and crown of the scalp. It usually starts with a widening through the center hair part;

  • The front hairline remains; and

  • The hair loss rarely progresses to total or near total baldness, as it may in men.

The results of a double-blind, device-controlled clinical study conducted showed that 100% of subjects on the HairMax Lux 9 experienced hair growth at six months, the manufacturer stated. Over the same period of time, females on the HairMax Lux 9 grew an average of 20.5 hairs per cm squared. In addition, more than 70% of the subjects on the HairMax LaserComb Lux 9 reported improvement in thickness and fullness of their hair. No serious side effects occurred and there were no other types of side effects caused by the HairMax LaserComb Lux 9 in the study.

HairMax LaserComb Lux 9, which is most effective in early to moderate stages of hair loss, delivers laser energy to stimulate dormant and active hair follicles. To use the HairMax LaserComb Lux 9, treat hair for 11 minutes, every other day.

In April 2011, the FDA also granted clearance for marketing for three new models of the HairMax LaserComb for male pattern baldness.

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Oasis Age Essential caters to oral health needs of baby boomers, older Americans

BY Antoinette Alexander

CLEVELAND — Oasis Consumer Healthcare, a maker of oral health products, has announced the launch of Oasis Age Essential, which it is positioning as the first over-the-counter, clinical-strength formula designed to support the changing mouth conditions of adults ages 50 years and older.

Age Essential is a daily care, alcohol-free mouthwash specifically designed for the oral health needs of baby boomers and older Americans. Age Essential’s patent-pending Duration technology aims to kill germs for 16 hours while moistening a dry mouth, freshening breath and helping prevent plaque and gingivitis, which are especially harmful as adults age.

"It’s no secret that the entire body changes with age, and adults 50 years and older have their own unique oral care needs, leaving them more susceptible to complications that include heart disease and stroke if they don’t adhere to an upgraded oral regimen," Oasis Consumer Healthcare CEO Brian Sokol."Drug and grocery retailers can now provide their customers with oral health care specific to their age, beyond what toothpaste and traditional mouthwash can provide."

Available in 16-oz. bottles, Age Essential has a suggested retail price of $6.99.

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