Expert's Opinion

Brand Blowout

By Robert Passikoff, Brand Keys | November 18, 2010

Box shine products can't give Brazilian Blowouts a run for their money, says Robert Passikoff.

The down economy is being felt in all sorts of places, and one of those appears to be the feel of silky–and straight–hair. As the price tag attached to the Brazilian blowout becomes increasingly gag-worthy, women are looking for at-home ways to try to achieve that salon result in a DIY kind of way.

For the uninitiated, or those lucky few that fear neither rain, sleep nor humidity, the Brazilian blowout is a process that women claim de-shackles them from their blow dryers, giving them back hours of precious time every week. This comes with a $300-$500 price tag, however, and also some possible risk, as reports spread of the presence of serious amounts of formaldehyde in the chemical process.

“Box” hair colors, readily available in drug stores, have long been the go-to source for women not willing to spend the money and time to create a new look through color. And now, L’Oréal and Garnier have both introduced box shine products that they hope will be snatched up by women who want that keratin gloss of Brazilian fame, without cutting into their styling budget.

In our 2010 Customer Loyalty Engagement Index, here’s how consumers ranked the top hair color brands:

• Clairol/L'Oreal (tie)
• Garnier
• Revlon

So far, there have been less than stellar reviews for the gloss-in-a-box products: a sure sign of today’s social-media ecology, where consumers are talking each other, not the brand. While it may turn them off the products, hair color brands will do well to recognize that this will not dull women’s desire for gleaming locks. Whoever does it right, at a good price, will offer the kind of value that will add a shine to any brand.

About the Author
Robert Passikoff, founder and president of Brand Keys, Inc., pioneered work in loyalty and engagement, creating the Brand Keys Customer Loyalty Engagement Index, the Brandweek Loyalty Leaders List, the Sports Fan Loyalty Index, and the Women's Wear Daily Fashion Brand Engagement Index.
His first best-selling book, Predicting Market Success, provides marketers a 21st century perspective on predictive loyalty metrics. His newest book (co-authored with Brand Keys' EVP of Global Brand Development, Amy Shea) The Certainty Principle: How to Guarantee Brand Profits in the Consumer Engagement Marketplace provides companies with a predictive approach to brand differentiation.