Coty's Healing Garden cultivates new image

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Coty's Healing Garden aromatherapy line gets a face-lift with a revamped ad campaign this fall, followed by a redesigned Web site at yearend and new TV spots in 2001.

The 3-year-old line, which introduced aromatherapy into the mass market, will aim at a younger demographic and the gift market with ads breaking in November magazines. For the first time, the campaign will include men, who will be the target of a product launch next year.

Healing Garden has skewed toward thirtysomething women who shop for themselves, said Anastasia Ayala, senior VP-global fragrances. But Coty found many younger women also were introduced to the brand via gifts, and many retailer accounts and magazines noted men also were attracted to the concept. So the company decided to make an effort to reach 20- to 25-year-olds, men and gift shoppers, she said.

YOUNGER ATTITUDE

The new ads reflect that effort to expand the brand, featuring a younger attitude and literally putting men in the picture. Two-page inserts with scent strips and spreads explain the basic principle of aromachology -- using scent for physical and emotional well-being -- and offer a selection of Healing Garden products with their benefits.

"There is a lot of gray zone [in this category]. . . . Part of the effort of the next year is to educate the consumer," Ms. Ayala said.

Ads, created in-house, will appear in fashion and lifestyle magazines including Allure, Cosmopolitan and Self. A 15-second TV spot -- recut from a past 30-second spot by Seiden Group, New York -- will break in December for the holiday shopping season; a new TV spot will follow in 2001.

The ads also will introduce Healing Garden's new ZZZ Therapy line of toiletries. Formulated to aid sleep, the line hits store shelves this month. Other line extensions will follow in 2001, including the first Healing Garden line for men, now under development for an expected fall 2001 launch.

FIRST IN 1997

Coty led the way in 1997 when it launched Healing Garden as the first full aromatherapy brand in mass retail outlets. Since then, nearly every mass brand has launched toiletries featuring botanical ingredients and "calming" or "invigorating" scents.

The Healing Garden's replant-ing is part of Coty's overall effort to overhaul its brands and fashion with a more upscale image. Last month, it moved its 40-year-old flagship Calgon brand to Frierson, Mee & Kraft, New York, which will develop a new, more modern look for the brand. This follows the revamping of brands such as Aspen, Jovan and Stetson -- including new packaging, line extensions and advertising -- over the last year.

The Healing Garden brand also will get a new look next year to appeal to the younger demographics, Ms. Ayala said. Coty is now studying how to repackage the brand for fall 2001, she said. "To keep it relevant and keep ahead of the pack, you need to look like leaders," she said.

Additionally, the brand's Web site (healinggarden.com) is being redesigned to reflect the campaign's new look. The redesigned site kicks off in December, Ms. Ayala said. Healing Garden also will add a seasonal line of toiletries with cucumber and linden flower essences for spring/summer 2001 and plans another new-product launch for women in September 2001.

"Healing Garden has a good consumer base and market share. It's a great brand. It doesn't need to be fixed. It needs to be evolved," Ms. Ayala said.

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