Firstborn Adds L'Oreal Luxury Brands to Client Roster

Shop Wins Digital For Lancome, Kiehl's, Armani, Urban Decay And More

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L'Oreal has named Firstborn its digital agency of record for its luxury portfolio of brands in the U.S., including Lancôme, Kiehl's, Yves Saint Laurent Beauté, Clarisonic, Giorgio Armani and Urban Decay.

The selection followed a competitive review during which more than 15 agencies responded to its request for information, the company said.

Interpublic Group's R/GAis the incumbent on the account, which it won in May 2011. The shop did not participate in the recent review but will continue to work with its L'Oreal Paris client.


"We've worked with L'Oreal Paris for seven years," said an RGA spokeswoman. "We look forward to an ongoing relationship."

Brigitte King, senior VP-digital marketing, e-commerce and customer relationship management at L'Oreal, said the review complemented a major infrastructure makeover within the luxury group's direct-to-consumer arm, including more sophisticated e-commerce capabilities and a new CRM database.

"It's really galvanized the organization to refocus on the customer, and on customer data," she said. "Once [the CRM database] happened, there was a major opportunity in developing the right content for consumers. We needed to partner with an agency to help us grow at the level of development we were at."

It's a shift from the standard "batch-and-blast ad proposition," she added.

The agency will initially focus on a digital e-commerce strategy for various luxury brands, as well as customized content for the individual brands. More specifically, it will support an objective to connect consumers, through mobile devices, to in-store efforts.

It's not Firstborn's first dance with L'Oreal. The agency began working with its Redken haircare brand in January. It is, however, the first time the company has brought in a digital agency to work toward one solution for all of its luxury brands, said Ms. King.

"Everyone is searching for the ideal blend of commerce and content," she said. "They were sensitized to needs of our business and metrics and also fluent around user experience and customer experience overall. For me, that's what sealed the deal."

The group works with Publicis Groupe's namesake creative shop and Publicis' Atlanta-based digital shop Moxie Interactive on media. Neither account was affected by this review.

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