Marketing 50

Garnier Fructis

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When L'Oreal launched Garnier Fructis in the U.S. in early 2003, it had plenty of company. Unilever unleashed its Dove haircare line simultaneously.

More than two years later, it's clear Fructis has come out on top in the battle of new U.S. haircare brands, capturing 5.5% of shampoo, 6.9% of conditioner, and 6.5% of gel and mousse sales for the 52 weeks ended Sept. 4.

Leading the charge behind Fructis has been Karen Fondu, 48, president of Maybelline-Garnier U.S. She calls the Fructis launch "one of the most groundbreaking events in one of the most competitive personal-care categories." Key to the brand's success have been ads by Publicis Groupe's Publicis Worldwide, New York, that Ms. Fondu terms "inclusive, democratic and multi-ethnic." Fructis's bold packaging and natural-fruit-essence positioning have been particularly successful with Hispanic consumers, who make up both the fastest-growing and heaviest-using segment in haircare.

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