L'Oréal's Garnier Nutritioniste: A Marketing 50 Case Study

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Photo: Tony Pettinato
L'Oréal long had been gaining share in hair care and cosmetics in the U.S., but skin care proved a tougher category to crack against entrenched competitors such as Procter & Gamble Co.'s Olay. Garnier Nutritioniste is changing that.

Nutritioniste, launched last year, is putting L'Oréal on an upward trajectory as it repeats the inroads the Garnier brand has made in hair products during the past decade. L'Oréal has built Nutritioniste into a $58 million-plus line, according to Information Resources Inc. Its Skin Renew facial anti-aging product, for example, posted sales of $13.3 million for the 52 weeks ended Oct. 5, up 560.1%. Nutritioniste Nutri-Pure facial cleansers were up 44% to $7 million.

A competitor notes that Nutritioniste didn't truly get traction until year two, with products including an anti-puff eye roller and items that promise to reverse sun damage. Leading that effort has been Carolyn Holba, senior VP-marketing for Maybelline Garnier, who came to the post in 2007.

"Year one was really about establishing our place," she says. "Year two we had very aggressive goals for ourselves in terms of becoming a top-five player." Besides innovative products such as the eye roller, she credits strong TV and print advertising from Publicis Worldwide, New York.

Those ads hit hard on the core premise for Garnier Nutritioniste: a combination of natural ingredients and high-tech efficacy. That proposition has helped Nutritioniste not only take share in mass, Ms. Holba says, but also attract shoppers from prestige labels.
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