A Greening and Targeting Sampling Approaches
Unsurprisingly, the sampling segment has ecological concerns. As a result, samples are increasingly produced “on demand” while gaining ground on social networks. For brands, this means minimized losses and boosted conversion rates. What’s more?
New perfuming gestures
In retail format, fragrance is inventing new gestures and sampling formats follows the movement. iDSCENT, with its Scentouch, revisits the idea of the stem applicator bottle in paper format. At the head of the French olfactory marketing company, Maxime Caffon explains that “Scentouch is presented as a 2D miniature in a 100% eco-certified paper bottle-case featuring an impregnated applicator to test the fragrance by dobbing it onto the skin”.
Integrated into the cellulose fibers by using air compression, the perfume has optimal endurance. “Scentouch isn’t a one-shot sample. It can faithfully reproduce a fragrance’s scent after several months or even years. The user can therefore test and re-test the fragrance as well as share it”, so he doesn’t throw it away, which makes all the difference.
At Arcade Beauty, it is small cellulose fragrance-impregnated beads that are given to smell. The samples are thermoformed compact with a double lid. It’s a format borrowed from make-up that makes for a new gesture in fragrance. A collaboration with Amkiri has also made it possible to “turn the samples into skin ornaments”. The result is “visual fragrances” or ephemeral tattoos with scented inks.
Mini travel sizes or samples?
To test a product over time, mini formats, in retail versions, have taken over from samples. They are also available as freebies which makes them an excellent cross-selling lever that perfectly fulfills its dual vocation of gift-with-purchase and try-before-buy. More generous formats in more sophisticated packaging? Well, the trend has always existed! But it’s gaining ground. It could develop further with the increase in quality sampling campaigns.
Other types of samples can also be used to test a product over a period of several days. Livcer has worked on the subject with its new type of re-sealable samples. They developed a range in an unrestricted format that avoids any waste in the case the full dose is not used at once by the consumer. But more importantly, this means that re-sealable, recyclable or recycled samples are considering sustainability concerns.
Sustainable & Green Development
Livcer recently presented its thermoformed Go Green range with a PET shell and PE lid that targets makeup. There are plans to extend Livcer to skincare as well. Albéa’s Mini Néa neutral mini pump that was launched in 2017 in an atmospheric version, and as an airless model in 2018, is now available in PCR materials. Aptar’s Nano range is mono-material (in polypropylene) and 100% recyclable, including the airless pump, a PCR cap. To continue, a recycled version for retail products, that is food-grade certified, will be launched this month.
The same approach has been taken in the fragrance department with the Easy Collection available in PCR, and the pumps’ bottles made in classic polypro. The bottles can also be accessorized with PCR Easy Clip Card made with recycled papers. Brands are clearly looking to go green. In the fragrance segment, demand is shifting to glass bottles (70% compared to 30% for plastic). Cofatech developed with ACS (The MetaLight sachet) and Amcor (Metapresse) aluminum-free solutions, mono-material polypropylene sachets, that are available in all formats and shapes.
This trend can be explained by the fact that, formulas being more and more fragile with the rise of preservative-free versions, brands tend to see aluminum as the best barrier option. However, sustainability is the priority for the market. We can see that, with innovations such as recycled sachets that has a reduced carbon footprint, or new thermoformed shells incorporating 50% PCR, and the range of mini bottles featuring 40% recycled glass, brands are rethinking plastic packaging towards a circular economy.
The on-demand trend
There is a shift in retail sampling market towards on-demand samples. With the rise of e-sampling, on-demand flats formats are seeing strong growth. For example, with Samplicity.co service platform, the consumer can easily sign up and select the sample she or he would like to try among the various available options. The online questionnaire can help better target the needs and understand consumers’ preferences, and thus greatly improve the discovery experience. The outcome has been a boost of conversion rates for brands (double-digit conversion rates to be exact) and a growing community around the online platform. To conclude, on-demand samples can be an excellent lever for purchase while being a great addition to any targeted campaign traceability.
AR Beauty & Sampling
Virtual make-up samples are increasingly popular on social networks, notably Instagram and YouTube, with Google launching a beta version of the AR Beauty Try-on. There is certainly nothing that can prevent this Pure Augmented-Reality experience to be coupled with on-demand sampling. Yves Saint Laurent just proved it with its operation in collaboration with Cosmopolitan magazine and Snapchat.