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Public Relations in the Beauty Industry

Grooming has become an inevitable part of human life. It is significant in terms of health, cleanliness, hygiene and role in social relations. Beauty is what people appreciate. The majority has their specific rituals of grooming everyone enjoys looking attractively. It is predicted that the beauty industry will be growing rapidly in the near future with newly emerging markets of men’s grooming and anti-ageing.

Centuries ago women have been passionate about making themselves beautiful and looking attractively. The attitude to beauty has scarcely changed since then. The beauty industry provides women with the products that give them confidence and make their eyes sparkle. Public relations elevate considerably the level of recognizability of the products and services of the beauty industry. As there are numerous outlets online and in the media world, this industry is considered to be well suited for public relations. Wise public relations are essential contributors and promoters the beauty industry.

Among the variety of existing industries, the beauty industry gives people the opportunity to look and smell their best. Before leaving the house the majority follows the same beauty ritual, such as shower, haircut, nail trim, make-up and other similar procedures. As people feel an immense need in the services and products of the beauty industry, it has been expanding and growing during the recorded history (“Beauty Industry Analysis 2012 – Cost & Trends”).


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Public relations (shortened PR) are the managing of the information flow between an organization and an individual or the public. It may also be defined as the management function of communicating, researching and collaborating with customers in order to build relationships which are mutually beneficial (Elliot). The definition was established in 1930s by Edward Louis Bernays and Ivy Lee. In 1928, the term was used to shield the profession from the poor reputation, which was associated with propaganda which, in its turn, became an epithet of hate and contempt. The first course of public relations was started by Edward Bernays in the 1930s. Ivy Lee has been credited with the modern news release developing as he developed a public relations’ approach, in which public relations contain helpful information which is provided to the client in order to help them in listening and communicating with the public. Nevertheless, Edward Bernays was the first theorist in this field. He considered public relations a social science which uses some insights from sociology, psychology and other disciplines designed to manipulate people’s thinking.

The history of public relations dates back to the 1700s, when a public relations practitioner, named Georgiana Cavendish, Duchess of Devonshire, conducted lobbying, press relations,and campaigns for celebrities on behalf of a British politician who supported the Whig party. In the US, public relations precursor was a publicist who promoted theatrical performances, circuses or any other public spectacles. It is believed that the term was first noticed in the Book of Railway Literature of 1987.

Public relations as a profession was stimulated only after the First World War. The Creel Committee or the Public Information Committee was the starting point for the first professionals of PR. They organized publicity on behalf of the United States objectives during the time of the First World War. Bernays commented that when he came home (the US) from the war, he realized the propaganda may be used not only for war, but for peace as well. Due to German, the word propaganda had a negative meaning.

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The field of beauty was defined in 1978 by the World Assembly of Public Relations Associations as the social science and the art of analyzing trends, counseling organization leaders and predicting the consequences that help the public interest and organization itself.

The notion of public relations is opposite to advertising. In public relations, no one has to pay for the article which gives characteristics of the company whereas the owner pays for any message regarding his or her company which is printed in a newspaper or magazine, TV or radio, when it comes to traditional advertisement. Publicity is more efficient and effective than advertisement, because it is more cost-effective, the only things needed to be paid for are mailing and phone calls. Furthermore, it lasts substantially longer. Thus, the article that describes one’s company will remain in people’s minds for a longer period of time than the advertisement of the same context. Publicity needs to address a wider audience as sometimes the story may be chosen by the national media which spread the information about the certain company and business over the whole country. It is highly significant that publicity is of greater credibility to the public than advertising. PR is often referred to by marketers as the part of efforts of integrated community where publicity is a promotional tool for profit making.

PR is an influencing power. Indirect opinion helps one to achieve the marketing goals. The experts in public relations have good communicative skills as they have to communicate certain messages to journalists, bloggers and customers. Their skills are crucial to a company as they are the company’s representatives who lead dialogues between consumers and companies. The survey shows that public relations in the beauty industry are more essential than in any other industries. Commentators, photographers, editors and stylists create the so-called bridge between companies and consumers, and they place a great trust in the public opinion as traditional ads are no more trusted (“Public Relations”).

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The Internet has created a significant influence on the functions of PR professionals in the past decade (Swallow). The industry of PR is in a state of increasing emphasis on the social and digital side of communications. As the context of public relation is digitalized, optimization of search engine and social media has is needed in order to compound results (“Testing SEO & Social Media Readiness: 6 Questions”). A central role in public relations is played by building and managing relationships with people who have an impact on individual’s audiences or organization. After starting the work in a certain field, a public relations practitioner accumulates a list of relationships that become an asset. Objectives are integral parts of any PR campaign. They state what should be achieved and what should happen. The objectives have to be clear, concrete and starting with an action verb as reduce, improve, increase and others in order to be fulfilled. Another step in the process of PR planning is a strategy which helpsto ensure one meets the objectives he or she has previously stated. The strategies are considered to be guidelines which set up the tactics. In their turn, tactics are strategic direction of programs and plans.

One of the keys to a successful PR campaign is the creation of an interesting and exciting story related to the service, company, or product. A target market should always be kept in mind. One should also study the media outlets which reach the target market and develop a lot of stories in order to pitch a variety of outlets. One has to be aware of the needs and interests of each media source. The primary key in launching a successful and effective media relations campaign is a focus on the need of various media outlets. For example, publications of beauty trade may be interesting in a business sphere, at the same time local media may respond to a local slant pitch or a national TV show. Thus, a beauty field needs creativity as it offers strong visuals. One may get a hint for the writing of an interesting and compelling story from the packaging, the look and the ingredients. The initiative of utilizing non-allergic ingredients, eco-friendly packaging, and many other things may expose the company to the media. Nowadays, savvy beauty-oriented companies spend little amount of money on conventional advertising. Instead, they use public relations together with blogging and social media campaign in order to build their business, achieve success in the beauty industry or grow their brand (“Traditional Plus Social Media: The Beauty Biz Success Secret”).

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In order to be a successful PR professional, no matter in which industry one works, he or she needs to have the knowledge of such disciplines as crisis communication, government relations, internal communications, financial public relations and consumer public relations. Public relations tell a story of an organization to the customers and shape it, as well. In different organizations, PR takes many forms and may come under such titles as investor relations, public affairs, corporate communication, public information, and marketing or customer relations.

When a business grows, as a rule, it becomes more prominent in the industry, as well as the community. It means that it becomes worth of being noticed which requires public relations. Public relation is a perfect tool as it should be paid for directly. Of course, effective PR need substantial efforts. Good publicity, as a rule, requires a thorough planning, constant effort, money to pay to the copywriters, PR consultants, and for the press release mailing. Thus, one just lets other people know about the existence of his or her company, and that it represents the source of advice and information about the industry one works in. The expertise may start by ensure that one knows all about the industry, product and business. It is essential to contact publications and volunteers of industry trade in order to write articles, reviews, columns, and express opinion, in case one cannot do it herself or himself. An inevitable part of public relation is offering seminars and demonstrations which are related to business. Before contacting the media and presenting oneself as an expert, one will have already had a lot of credentials.

Any successful PR program has to create awareness and sense of objective endorsement of services, products, people and contributions. An effective PR campaign leads to name recognition and enhancing goodwill that cannot always be achieved through traditional advertising. Sometimes, it becomes an issue that some companies’ are more successful in attracting publicity, while others are not. The fact is that it does not matter how large the business is, the crucial factor of securing publicity is identifying the target market and developing the campaign of thought out public relations.

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In order to make the company noticed and recognized, it is essential to have a clear positioning statement which emphasizes what differs a given business from others. Listing of the top objectives helps in realizing what one hopes to achieve for the company with the help of publicity. It is essential to identify the target customers, which means to identify their sex, age range, buying habits, incomes and lifestyles. Target media should also be identified. It is advisable to make a list of newspapers, magazines, TV and radio programs which need to be targeted. One has to develop the story angles beforehand, and they should be comprised of what one would like to read about or see on TV. Making a pitch may be helpful. The only thing which needs to be done is putting the thoughts on paper and sending them to the reporter. Positioning statement must be also included. The most significant thing in publicity efforts is careful planning of the business. It is always an exceptional pleasure to see the company features on TV, in the news etc. (“Public Relations”).

Public relations may include an individual gaining exposure or an organization that uses topics which are interesting to the public with the aim of persuading investors, partners, the public, employees, stakeholders and others in order to maintain a certain view point about it. Working with press, communication with employees, speaking at conferences and winning industry awards are common activities that are useful in terms of fulfilling the goal of PR. Agents of PR coordinate educational programs, speaking engagements, events, meetings and other communication events.

A traditional media readership in consistently shifting to online media, it has its reflection on public relations. Nowadays, media outlets include content publishing, podcasts, video, social media releases, and search engine optimization. Two-way communications in social media may be divided into two categories. The first one is an asymmetrical model of public relations, where an organization receives feedback from the public and uses it in the attempt to persuade the public to change. The second category is a symmetrical model, which means that an organization is interested in the public and seeks to balance between the interest of the public and the interest of their organization. Due to the shift to the online media, the role of public relations professionals is constantly changing. As a result, a lot of PR professionals find it necessary to develop their skills and to learn new ones, as well as to examine the social media impact on the reputation of a brand.

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Nowadays, the beauty industry includes not only skin care products and cosmetics, but also products and services which encompass hair removal and air styling, massage parlors, nails saloons, shaving products, perfumes, colognes, shower putouts and many others. In many cases, beauty rituals are used in order to escape from the information age and give us the opportunity to relax and look well.

In the beauty industry, there is a distinct line between services and products in spite of the fact that most beauty providers offer both of them. Within products and services, there is a variety of business models which are based on the target market, processes of production and location. The beauty industry provides people with products which help them look better, younger and healthier. Due to the fact that the diversity among service providers is not substantially extensive, considerable differences in prices, location, and target market exist. The target market may vary from an inexpensive hair cut market to a luxury spa experience. There are also providers who offer products and services only to children or weddings.

The expansion of the beauty industry is a global phenomenon. Some projections claim 8.5% growth by 2014. The trends which support this expansion promise to have a continued profitability in the future. The rise of incomes and access to international markets increases spending on such items as cosmetics and perfumes. It may be surprising, but products and services aimed at men is the segment of the beauty industry that grows the fastest. Nowadays, contrary to women, men feel an increasing attention from the beauty industry. Men are mostly targeted for lotions, hair products, body sprays, nail care and others. Beauty salons offer a variety of services for men, among them facials, shaves, cuts, manicures and massages. The survey showed that beauty industry consumers tend to be loyal to definite brand products. Almost 60% of surveyed claimed that celebrity marketing is not relevant in terms of decision making as personal recommendations, whereas over 40 % claimed that they bought a particular product because of its certain characteristics. As beauty products become comfortable and familiar to consumers, their change may take some extra incentive. In the beauty industry, customers are lured to buy new products with the help of marketing campaigns which include various loyalty programs, discounts and free samples.

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The beauty industry is constantly offering a set of opportunities of profitable franchising. Beauty franchises operate dozens of strategies aimed at reaching all consumer types. Retail opportunities include home-based businesses which offer services of hair care, skin care, tanning, and others and store locations of brick-and-mortar. Increasingly more often entrepreneurs of cosmetic and skin care offer complete menus which are designed for the customer’s full day experience. Hair care opportunities have a wide range of different franchises that are based on location, gender and cost. Franchising plays a highly significant role in the process of bringing a wide range of products and services which are encompassed by the beauty industry to the consumer (“Beauty Industry Analysis 2012 – Cost & Trends”).

The world of beauty is tailor made for PR which will pay off in the long run, in case of developing a strong media relations and marketing strategies. When it comes to designating a brand or a beauty product, it is critical to have a strong campaign of public relations. An effective plan of the game and work should be followed on weekly. First, one has to create interesting and compelling stories about the product (how it is different, which celebrities use it, the feeling it evokes, interesting stories related to the development and launching the company). Afterwards, one can come up with the made up list of a target media (“Traditional Plus Social Media: The Beauty Biz Success Secret”).

Positioning of the company with the help of media will help in defining a style and beauty trends. Moreover, a social media campaign and blogging may be melded with the traditional media campaign. When a product line, saloon or company receives coverage in a local newspaper or magazine, one can link the article to the blog or any social site. In this way, a local article may be turned into a national one. One can also tape an interesting segment, which may also be funny and post it on YouTube. With the help of social sites,, such as A Facebook, Twitter, or Linkedin, it is possible to make a buzz around the video.

Nowadays, the beauty brand practice working with beauty bloggers. Accessibility of bloggers’ reviews of the nature of a beauty product makes it clear that beauty blogs play a vital role in the purchasing decision making by consumers.

The beauty PR or a beauty blogger relationship is considered to be a relatively new and requires additional knowledge in working with a blogger, since it is slightly different from working with a journalist. Bloggers are not paid for the work and they may have a lot of responsibilities in their daily lives, as they have full time works, children, families, duties. Therefore, they do this work mostly in the spare time.

The beauty oriented company needs to have a strong, well-developed brand to be really successful. PR and media relations are the only effective creation of brand awareness and brand power. Public relations make the products or services positioned, as well as present the company as a beauty guru. In the near future, the media will start coming in order to learn the best and the latest beauty secrets and tips.

While launching a PR campaign which is oriented on beauty, it is worth starting with the local print media. There should be brainstorming conducted, and a social media strategy created in order to capitalize on the print media coverage. Social media tools may be used as a helping tool for maximizing marketing efforts. A steady build and pieces for capitalizing the media are also essential. If one has no opportunity to hire a public relations firm, he or she do not need to sit still and wait. Thus, a basic campaign needs to be launched using one’s own efforts. Development of an effective PR strategy and marketing will definitely pay off. It will sell the products, grow the base of customers, establish the products, grow the company and build the brand (“Traditional Plus Social Media: The Beauty Biz Success Secret”).

Public relations in the beauty industry, as well as in any other, use a fundamental technique of identifying a target audience ad creating a message which would appeal to any audience. As sometimes the audiences and stakeholders may have quite different interests, it is advisable to create several, but complementary messages. Messaging is a crucial process, and it includes the creation of a story which is related to the service, product, person or company. It aims to prevent readers from receiving confusing and contradictory information which may instill doubt in the decision making and purchasing choice. Of course, brands follow the same aim of industry viewpoint, problem statement or brand perception that is shared across mediums and sources. Digital marketing presupposes the use of the Internet which includes blogging, marketing of social media, social bookmarking and new media relations. In this way, interactive PR gives an opportunity to communicate directly with the audience, customers and prospects.

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PR has an immense area to work, when it comes to the beauty industry as it covers women, men, seniors, preteens and even children. The products and services may be targeted to all age and sex categories or to one of them. Being in the beauty industry, one has to define what audience is going to be targeted. It is not enough to reach the market, one should also inform and educate the audience of the variety of services and procedures that are offered in salons. Many clients even do not realize what lies in the basis of the services they choose from.

Of course, professionals of beauty PR attend industry events in different ways. They involve people who are participating at various fashion shows more than products. In this case, the highly significant PR products are these people as they influence the business and PR. After the show, people share the photos, information, and the news or ask for advice. People relationships in the beauty industry are long lasting whereas beauty products come and go. Meeting the right people during any beauty event gives one the opportunity to shape the picture of his or her business, share the excitement of public relations news, or just share what one knows.

In order to make the attending of the beauty event effective, it is essential to plan what people need to be met and where to find them. One can call those whom he or she knows in advance. It is advisable to pre-set appointments before the event. A specific type of PR should be chosen in advance (examples are the pages of news websites, local press release and others). It is essential to have a photo which demonstrates the owner of the company at the event. Therefore, a digital camera is necessary. In case, there are other photographers, it is essential to ask for their e-mails and share the photos. People need to be demonstrated the desire of staying in touch. Thus, it is highly significant to give the business card to those whom one has met at the show or event. Before the show, the information concerning the manufacturers who will be present, exhibition of industry publications, titles and names of show management, the entity of the event and others need to be thoroughly studied (Esche).

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The modern generation is constantly fueling PR. They are more skeptical than older generations, when they have to choose the brand. As soon as they find the appropriate brand, they remain loyal to it. Beauty companies like this idea as the Boomer generation offers the opportunity of the biggest growth in the coming years. They will be surely more interested in anti-aging products. In order to earn the trust of this generation, beauty companies will have to have to leverage their best PR practitioners to prove and inform in the most distinct and clear way (“Canada’s Top Beauty PR reps 2010”).

However, negative PR (also called dark public relations or DPR) exist, as well. Being contrary to the traditional PR, it is a process of destroying a corporate identity or reputation. Dark public relations aim to discredit a person, company, service or product that may pose threat to the business of a competitor. It relies on competitive intelligence, IT security, social engineering and industrial espionage. This type of PR uses facts which mislead or fool a competitor. There is an idea that negative public relations may be the tool that disciplines companies, producers, organizations and individuals

PR aims to catch the eye of a customer and make people talk about the product or service. Therefore, it is closely connected with being creative through organizing launches and writing press releases. PR involves communication to present customers in the most favorable way and cooperative efforts with organizations and people in order to create good will. It is evident that the beauty industry has already reached a global level as beauty products may be customized for different beauty companies in diverse geographical areas. Social media helps beauty industry to target a global market, because their customers may need a piece of advice or suggestion what product to use or what fits their needs. In this situation, social media is a kind of a channel used in terms of asking for advice. There is an everyday fight for the media landscape coverage between different beauty brands.

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As the business world is increasingly competitive, companies and organizations try to have something that makes their products and services distinct from others, something that makes them more interesting and appealing to the media and customers. A positive and favorable reputation leads to the increased sales of the company. Employees, investors, customers, suppliers, regulators and journalists may have an immense impact. They shape the reputation of a company or product as they come into contact with them. Their opinion and decisions support these organizations and companies and influence their position within the market. Reputation is one of the most essential assets of a company. Effective PR helps to manage reputation.

As for now, people live in a beauty driven society, where the beauty industry is constantly introducing innovations and new products in order to improve human appearance all over the world. Thus, it is essential for beauty companies to utilize public relations with the purpose of building and maintaining relationships with their consumers. In spite of the fact that the definition of the term public relation remains the same, it has various tactics which differ from one industry to another. Beauty industry takes the relationship building on a more personal level.



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