January, 2006...Two years in the making and with much anticipation, Revlon rolls out its Vital Radiance line targeted at women over 50. It's the company's first major product introduction in a decade.
September, 2006 (early September)...with sales sluggish, Revlon pulls the plug on its Vital Radiance line and its marketing campaign.
September, 2006 (late September)...Revlon fires its President/CEO and it's Senior Marketing Team, including its Chief Marketing Officer, Chief Creative Officer and Marketing Director.
What's the connection in this series of events?
What went wrong and when?
A major share of the blame was pointed at the company's now-defunct marketing team, who took on the task of marketing products designed for women over 50, many of whom don't want to be reminded of their age. That being said, this demographic is seriously under-served in the skin care and beauty industry. This fact alone left many women, who were initially excited about revlon the product, disappointed to see it pulled from the few places where they could find it.
It's unclear whether Revlon lost its vision or its funding. Many feel that money problems may have prevented Revlon from maintaining its stature as an industry heavy hitter. Revlon did its homework in identifying this under-served niche with much success, but somewhere after the revelation, they dropped the marketing "ball".
The name game.
The product name seemed to suit the product to a "T". The word "vital" implies something that you can't do without. "Radiance"...who doesn't want to "radiate"? The combination of the two words seems to imply eternal youth...do you know a woman alive who wouldn't like to buy into that? The promise of "eternal youth" is and always will be a major selling point to the women in this demographic and surprisingly even into women in their 30's who are trying to ward off the effects of aging and maintain a younger appearance.
The Vital Radiance line, which boasted more than 100 hydrating products for the face, eyes and lips, should have been part of Revlon's core brand, yet it wasn't. So ultimately this line went to the wayside, ala their "Ultima II" and "Charles of the Ritz" product lines.
Come out, come out, wherever you are!
Consumers can't buy what they can't find...right? Although Revlon is a major player in the skin care promotion game, it failed to garner vital shelf space in major retail outlets such as CVS and WalMart, to name a couple.
Were their ads to blame for the demise of the line? Who knows? No one remembers seeing them. Okay, so they took the same gamble that Dove did for its skin care products by hiring real people to promote the product instead of a celebrity spokesperson. Dove's gamble has paid off...big time. Why didn't it work for Revlon's skin care marketing efforts?
Put to the Test?
Another problem was the lack of a testing bank in locations where the product was being sold. At a price point of $13.50 - $20, many women weren't comfortable buying it without trying it. They wanted testers on display to gauge their satisfaction level with the skin care product line before making their purchase.