Q&A

"Acknowledging men’s uniqueness": Schick rebrands to meet consumers where they are

By Ravyn Cullor contact

- Last updated on GMT

The rebrand launched in March and Schick officials say it's part of a larger brand repositioning campaign. © Schick
The rebrand launched in March and Schick officials say it's part of a larger brand repositioning campaign. © Schick

Related tags: Shaving, Facial hair, Beard, rebrand, Male consumer

Shaving company Schick launched a rebrand in March focused around showing a wider variety of men, minimalist design and user-generated consumer stories on social media. CosmeticsDesign interviewed Matt Bell, senior vice president of North America at Edgewell Personal Care, about the rebrand and overall repositioning.

This interview was conducted via email

Tell me a bit about the packaging and website redesign and what inspired it.

Our redesign was just one part of our overarching new brand positioning around celebrating individuality and self-expression and was designed to encourage men to embrace their truest, most authentic selves. We wanted Schick’s packaging and website to complement the spirit of our brand evolution.

The bold, minimalist design choices reflect the extraordinary within the ordinary that we uncovered in speaking with real men and highlighted within our “Be you. No one else can.”​ ad spots. Further, our modern packaging clearly communicates product benefits to help men find the tools that meet their unique needs.

Key findings from the Schick nation wide survey

Key findings from Schick’s national survey include:

  • 8 in 10 men don’t want brands telling them how to be an individual
  • 85% of men prefer to see real, ordinary and everyday people depicted in ads
  • 81% of men would prefer that brands celebrate them for who they are instead of asking them to change
  • 75% of consumers look for brands that empower them to be their unique self
  • Personal grooming and facial hair contributes to freedom of expression for nearly 7 in 10 men
  • 80% of men believe that they gain a sense of confidence after grooming

What is the value of bringing the “real people” model into the male personal care space?

We think there is tremendous value in acknowledging men’s uniqueness and supporting their authentic selves. As we looked across the grooming category, we saw brands were typically telling men how to be or showing them a certain archetype of what it means to be a man. We didn’t see any brand that was really listening to men, giving them the mic and showing men as they are.

As a leader in the category, we wanted to shift that narrative and instead focus on embracing and highlighting men and their differences. To us, those differences are what make life interesting. Whether you're shaving sensitive skin, erasing seven days of stubble, trimming your beard, or something in between, we have a tool for you.

What does this redesign mean for the brand overall?

With this new brand positioning, Schick is acknowledging the role that grooming plays in self-expression and individuality. Our strategic redesign allowed us to illustrate Schick’s distinct point of view and that we as a brand are continuing to evolve by listening and engaging with consumers to ultimately meet their changing grooming needs.

Offering a seamless customer experience within the category is also a priority for us, so we revamped our packaging in a way that can be easily found on shelf to address the diverse needs of our consumers.

What challenges were there in making this transition?

Sixty percent of men are not clean-shaven, so as a grooming and shave brand, we needed to work harder than ever to earn their trust and attention. This challenge inspired us to create a campaign that gives men more of what they want to see in advertising – as uncovered by our national survey of men in the US – an authentic, relatable take on male self-expression and individuality. We also took this as an opportunity to highlight our broad product portfolio to provide men with an assortment of products to meet their changing needs and to communicate that in a more meaningful way to consumers.

Another challenge that we’ve had to maneuver is that with any brand transition like this, you want to make sure you don't lose your current customers, while also reaching new audiences. This inspired us to create a campaign that has broad appeal and resonates with all kinds of men. To do this effectively, we ensured that the transition took place at every consumer touchpoint - one of two from retail to online and advertising - we strategically inserted the Schick brand in a meaningful way to retain our loyal customer base and expand our reach.

What is the next step in this launch?

We are going to keep listening to men by encouraging them to share their own stories on TikTok and Reddit. We were so moved by the stories men shared in our ad spots and the thought-provoking survey results and are continuing the conversation on social media. We generated a hashtag challenge #SchickAsks on TikTok where hundreds of users participated and shared a wide range of unique stories - from funny anecdotes to some that were touching - that showed that differences are what make life interesting. We plan to continue these conversations and celebrate all the ways that individuals are unique.

What can the beauty industry more broadly take away from this launch?

With our research, we found that the industry’s representation of men, specifically in grooming ads, does not accurately depict reality. Aspirational marketing may have worked for certain generations, but times have changed and now men are especially craving an authentic voice that isn’t trying to sell them a fantasy. We hope to see other brands in the category join us in shifting to affirmational marketing strategies.

Anything else you want to add.

It was so important for us to hear from men and find out how they really feel about grooming advertisements and their own shaving habits. Our survey findings conveyed a clear message and inspired us to step in and be the change men want to see in the grooming space.

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