September 10, 2020

Article - Cosmetics: what are consumer reviews for?

Nearly 70% of the professionals in the cosmetics sector that we surveyed rated the importance they attach to online consumer reviews of the beauty products they buy at more than 4 out of 5.

The use of these reviews has many applications: evaluation of product performance, monitoring of customer satisfaction, positioning in relation to the competition, to name just three of the main ones.

In this article, we are going to detail 3 ways in which consumer reviews can be used within the framework of product strategy management.

A quoi servent les avis consommateurs dans les cosmétiques

Post-launch product monitoring

Analysis of the reviews submitted by consumers on the beauty products they buy allows to monitor their satisfaction over time regarding different product characteristics (texture, smell, effectiveness, etc.). 

Continuous exploitation of these customer reviews allows marketing functions (brand managers, group managers, product managers, etc.) to monitor the performance of their products, but also to detect possible downward trends and to respond as quickly as possible.

For example, in the three months following the launch of an anti-redness moisturiser, through an analysis of keywords identified in the customer reviews, a brand noted an increasing number of consumers dissatisfied with the texture of the product. Indeed, the three most used words to describe it were "greasy", "uncomfortable" and "not very hydrating". 

This way, the brand becomes aware of the positive but also negative appreciations of the consumers on its product.

Two solutions are then possible:

  • Quick solution: the brand adapts the communication around the product to make the expectations of the consumers coincide with the properties of the product, and thus reduce the proportion of dissatisfied consumers.
  • Long solution: the brand renovates the product by taking into account the reasons for consumer dissatisfaction with the various aspects of the product.

Whatever strategy is chosen, the analysis of customer opinions is an effective way for the brand to anticipate or slow down a drop in sales, particularly by improving a product that has already been launched on the market.

Launch of me-too products

The me-too strategy consists, for a brand, in aligning itself with a competitor when the latter has launched a commercially successful product on the market.

In this context, the analysis of consumer feedback allows the brand to identify the elements of success (colour of a lipstick, packaging of a perfume, texture of a cream), to be inspired by them in the design of its own product.The process remains the same for the factors of dissatisfaction.

The same process is used for dissatisfaction factors. The company will thus adapt its product according to consumer opinions and may even provide an improved experience for consumers.

Identification of new product segments

Customer keyword analysis is also an optimal method to identify a potential market opportunity, i.e. the existence of consumer needs not yet satisfied by existing products.

Indeed, thanks to consumers' opinions on their usual products, it is possible to identify their expectations in terms of product properties for a given product category (day creams, serums, etc.).

Then, by comparing these expectations with the properties offered by existing products on the market, it is possible to identify segments not occupied by brands. 

For example,

  • If the analysis of reviews of a moisturiser shows that the properties most cited by consumers are "mattifying moisturiser", "anti-ageing moisturiser", etc. and "anti-redness moisturiser";
  • And the market survey shows that there is no "anti-redness moisturiser" cream yet; then the brand has identified a potential segment to fill. 

Conclusion :

Consumer reviews are full of rich information that can be transformed into real action levers, but their potential is not yet fully exploited and needs to be further exploited. 

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