FASHION GROUP HOSTS TRANSFORMATIONAL BEAUTY SYMPOSIUM

The Fashion Group International hosted a business symposium with a panel of beauty industry experts to discuss the topic of transformational beauty. Held in New York City on April 28, the symposium featured the insights and ideas of esteemed panelists Caroline Pieper-Vogt, CEO of Fusion Brands, Inc.; Marc Speichert, chief marketing officer for L’Oréal USA; Maureen Case, president of Specialty Groups Worldwide for The Estée Lauder Companies; and Kathleen McNeill, president of Beauty.com.

Moderator Karen Young, CEO of The Young Group, asked each panelist to describe their efforts towards transforming the beauty business by ways of reinvention and innovation.

“Everything we do at Fusion Brands we consider to be transformational,” said Pieper-Vogt. “It’s what the beauty world is demanding now, and we can no longer conform. We’re bringing hybridization to beauty. Our multi-channel business strategy is unique with mass and prestige brands—it’s about the communication of the products.”

Ms. McNeill, also vice president of beauty for drugstore.com, highlighted the standout features on her company’s website, including skin care diagnostics, ingredient stories and beauty horoscopes.

“We’re really focused on educational and editorial content that allows the consumer to be more involved in the shopping experience,” said McNeill. “Features like our video library, hair consultations and live chat option give them the ability to learn so that they can find the products that are best fit for them.”

Mr. Speichert—who is in charge of bringing L’Oréal USA’s marketing capabilities to the next level—pointed out the importance of understanding the consumer’s path to purchase.

“At L’Oréal, there is lots of conversation about what’s happening before the consumer gets to the store,” said Speichert. “We recently initiated a media and digital collaboration with Demand Media to help generate specific content for consumers. They can learn how to use a variety of products to apply makeup or style their hair through how-to videos, and then decide which items they’d like to purchase.”

As the head of mega-brands Bobbi Brown, Jo Malone and La Mer, Ms. Case has extensive experience in brand building strategies and global business operations.

“It’s not just about the product, but it’s about the experience,” said Case. “Companies need to be able to transfer their brand’s DNA to each of their distribution channels so that the consumer can get the best treatment. Beauty is an indulgence and the consumer needs to feel indulged and pampered.”

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Caroline Pieper-Vogt, Marc Speichert,
Maureen Case and Kathleen McNeill.

Lord & Taylor’s Barbara Zinn Moore and
CEW’s Lisa Klein and Carlotta Jacobson
with Bari Seiden of The Estée Lauder Companies (2nd r.).

Nordstrom’s Lisa Kellam, Denny Meadows
and Mitzi Rogers with Don Loftus of
P&G Prestige (2nd l.).

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Sephora’s Allison Slater and Givaudan’s
Kate Greene and Rose Eckart with
Carlos Timiraos of Coty Prestige (2nd r.)..

Gilt Groupe’s Alexandra Wilkis Wilson with
John Demsey of The Estée Lauder Companies.

Condé Nast’s Lucille Duran and LVMH’s Nicholas Munafo with Terry Alvar of Seventeen.

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Self’s Elaine D’Farley and Jadzia Tirsch of Shiseido.

Fusion Brands’ Danielle Milata, Caroline Pieper-Vogt, Dana Kline and Greg Black.

Arcade Marketing’s Diane Crecca and
Annette Green of BobCar Experiential Media.

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