niche markets

The definition of a niche market is that the product interests just a few people. The target is represented by a limited segment and, in order for the market to be profitable, only one or two companies can be positioned on this specialized segment. In the market of hygiene and beauty for men, and especially in the cosmetics, the offer has been ignored by the cosmetics brand for a long time. In fact, until the end of the 1990s, beauty products for men were almost non-existent on the market.

They did not have a special space the stores and the men strictly used products in a utilitarian aspect. This market has interested just a few brands because it was considered as a niche. Only the group L’Oreal had the courage to launch itself in this segment in 1985 with Biotherm Homme. This brand is considered like a pioneer in the men’s’ cosmetics. In fact, Biotherm was almost alone for more than 15 years, and it is the first one which dares to proclaim that men also need to take care of themselves, to clean their skin, combining the pleasure and the wellness by usingcreams, lotions, even anti-wrinkle creams.

In the 90s, Nickel, an exclusive brand for men, launched an offensive by creating masculine beauty institutes. Then, in 1996, it launched its own line for men only. In fact, thanks to the succeed of its institutes, the brand noticed an real capacity and opportunity in this market. This new brand bound to men only knew how to enter in this market, thanks to its concept composed by different offers: one on the products, and the other one on the performance of services. But, the real revolution occurred in 2001 with the arrival of Vichy for men and Clarins in 2002.

A lot of brands begin to be seriously interested in this growing segment and real competition appears. A new potential is detected by the big cosmetologist firms. • The “masculinity of the women’s products It is important to consider the cosmetics’ world in two distinct parts; the market for the men and the one for the women. Even if there are not big distinctions between the products, those two markets are quite different. In fact, the men have not the same demand concerning the product. That is why the offer cannot be the same for both.

The ideal product for most men must have some properties and qualities such as being invisible, fast, pleasant to put, easy to use, without smells and with an efficient result. Thus, men are not searching for a feminine product, otherwise, they will continue to use their wife’s ones. They really look for a product adapted to them and to their needs and wants. Moreover, the demand is different from the women: They (the women) like to use make up, take care of their body and their face by putting moisturizing cream on it… Men have not already surpassed the taboos of the society, and, moreover, they do not like to “spread” cream on their body.

That is why they will be more attracted by products for shaving, for hairs. But this current demand will probably change in the next years. The strength of Nickel was to propose from the beginning a technique and know-how studied specially for men. For instance, in his institutes, the technique for depilation was specially adapted for them. Moreover, in order to stay in “a masculine tonality”, the brand gave names with a masculine connotation that do not make the men “guilty”, such as “torse de boxeur” (boxer chest) or “jambes de cyclistes” (biker legs). 1. 1. 2. Changes in the men cosmetics’ market Blossoming (rapid development) of cosmetics for men As it was said before, the market of cosmetics, at the beginning, interested just a few brands and also, few men. Initially, this world is attributed to women only. In fact, cosmetology is synonymous of seduction, beauty, healthiness, or pleasure. Those words represent what the women are looking for when it comes to cosmetics. But, finally, the market of men cosmetics takes off after years of waiting thanks to different changes: mentalities of the new masculine generation, appearance of “metrosexual”, social liberalization of homosexual, and the fact that men want to stay young.

The relationship between men and cosmetic products has changed and nowadays, they admit the fact that they also look for pleasure and wellness by using cosmetics. Bit by bit, firms pass over some barriers that men did not think they could transcend: make the men taking care of their skin, then, make them epilating and after, everything follows and continues to change. Make-up, Spa centres, beauty institutes, anti-wrinkles cream, hair cares… “Their interest for their appearance expresses in their point: thus, they are 64,6% to take care of their skin, 73,8% to attach importance to their hair, and 31,8% like trying novelties.

In addition, 38,7% states they devote time to take care of themselves. Those figures are clearly higher for the men under than25 years old and decrease gradually with the age”. All begins in 1985 when Biotherm launched Biotherm Homme, a line specially dedicated to men use. But, the market really took off in 2001 with the appearance of many brands interested in that specific market such as Nivea for Men, Klorane, Vichy Homme, Nickel, Phytomer, Clarins Men. Many lines and brands still appear on this market. It is in constant growth since its apparition and above all since 2001.

This market is bound to be successful for both top-of-range and mass distribution. • Opportunities of the market The advantages of this market are real since it is accessible and opened on the growth. In fact, forecasts are optimistic but the results are above the foretold success. For instance, Clarins Men reached 170% of its objectives in 2002 18 by the fact that the average number of products bought by the men is higher that the women’s one. According to Christian Courtin from Clarins, men buy “well beyond their forecast, men buy on average 4 products, against only two for women.

Another example is Biotherm Homme, the pioneer: its line counts 45 products. Between 1997 and 2002, this brand knew a growth of more than 250%. It is true that the purchase from the men reaches unhoped-for proportions, but a demand without attracting cannot be a balanced market. This is why many brands of hygiene-beauty specialized in the female market launch a reserved range for the men in order to benefit from a market less encumbered, of a stronger growth, evolution of mentalities and to create a place in this market before being lagging behind.

Indeed, some firms benefit from advantages before even catapulting themselves in the masculine care, because while being already present for the women, they enjoy a good reputation, therefore of a true credibility, an image of specialist and financial means the consequent ones. The arrival in force of the interest for the male world does not reach only the beauty care. The readers express a real passion for the male press, which arranges the market because, thanks to this mean of communication, it makes them known. Whether it be Maximal, Men’s Health, New look, or even Mr.

Magazine, they approach each subject having attracted with the beauty. Men’s cosmetics amount to 50% (one in every two men), whereas nowadays, it is just 21% and in 1994, it was just 4% of men who stated they used regularly face care products 1. 2. THE MARKET IN FACTS 1. 2. 1. The global cosmetics’ market: The market of men cosmetic is absolutely not the rival of the women market because it represents only the fortieth 24 of the feminine cosmetology. But, in spite of its modest size, this market is bound to a continuous and fast growth, which is a sizeable advantage.

According to the French newspaper “le Monde”, the trends are not so optimistic for the manufacturers of cosmetics. In fact, in Europe, the market of cosmetics in general is about 59,47 billion euros according to the European Association of the companies of hygienebeauty- perfumery (Colipa) and it presents a growth of the sales modestly positive (+ 2% in 2004, against + 3,5% in 2003). Those sales even start to regress in Germany and France, the two biggest European markets. If the women still buy as many hair or skin care products, the purchases of perfumes, and more generally of make-up (nail varnishes, for example) decrease.

The main reason seems to be probably the price. 1. 2. 2. The European market of men’s cosmetics 2013: It has been a somewhat mixed year for the men’s lines market across the Big 5 wih some ups and downs. Male grooming continues to be a market that on the whole, is growing. But that is not to say the category hasn’t been affected by the credit crunch – a crisis Europe is only now making proper strides out of France As all the group members are French, and because this market is quite representative about what is happening through all Western Europe, it is interesting to present the facts and figures for the French market.

The French industry of cosmetics is an industry which “draws” the growth: In 2006, French cosmetic industry saw its sales progressing for the fortieth consecutive year. The sales turnover is divided harmoniously between exports (57%) and the sales in France (43%). For 2006, cosmetic industry grew of 3,5% which is half more quickly than the national economy. The French market for men’s cosmetics follows the world tendency. The total sales turnover (produced care, of beauty and perfumes for men) progressed of almost 140% between 1998 and 2003, to 42,16 million euros, according to statistics of the federation of industries of perfumery (FIP).

For the only products of care and beauty, the progression is 294%, with 21,37 million. Products for men, account for 10,3% of the total French market of the cosmetic, but 25% of the sales of perfumes. 2013: In France figures from SymphonyIRI France revealed that male grooming fell by 0. 2% over the past year in value terms, with volume figures slumping by a worrying 1. 8%. The male grooming market in France is now worth €934. 6m, while volume sales came in at 195. 05m units. Natural products have always been popular with French men and the past year was no exception.

Germany In Germany things were a bit brighter for the male grooming market, which saw growth of 4. 2% over the past year in value terms to total €538. 61m, according to SymphonyIRI Germany. Volume figures were also positive up 3. 2% to 265. 36m units. All areas saw a growth in value sales – men’s shower products put on 1. 6% to make €122. 84m, while men’s deodorant products rose 4. 5% to €140. 62m and men’s facial skin care products increased a massive 13. 5% to €1. 89m. Italy Male grooming in Italy experienced a disappointing turn of events over the past year as value sales slid by 3%, according to industry body Unipro.

All sectors saw a decline in sales with a 1. 7% drop in male soaps, shaving foams and gels; a 3. 7% decline in aftershave products; and a 4. 4% decline in treatment creams. Although the figures for the past year do not seem to suggest it, Italian men are famously into their beauty products and L’Oreal Italy predominantly monopolised launches in this category. Spain More bad news was in store for Spain, where male grooming fell by a worrying 5. 69% in value terms to €312m and 4% in volume terms to 45. 2m units, according to SymphonyIRI Spain.

In terms of what each individual sub-sector was worth, razors accounted for the lion’s share of this, at €203. 1m; shaving foams, creams and gels made €43. 5m; pre-shave treatments and aftershaves were worth €30. 1m; while facial treatments accounted for €35. 3m worth of sales. The recent gloomy environment, however, does not seem to have deterred brands from new product development as quite a few new launches for men hit Spanish shelves over the last year. UK Fortunately it has not been all doom and gloom in the UK over the past year – the market here put on 2. % in the past year to make ? 782. 74m in value terms, according to Kantar Worldpanel. Volume also inched up by 0. 8% to 345. 15m units. All sub-sectors saw good growth including fragrances up 11. 9% and hairdressing products up 9. 8%. A slew of new launches hit shelves including those from supermarket giant Tesco, salon range Bed Head and a number of British niche brands. 2. 2. 2. THE MARKET ACTORS Men cosmetics’ market is still in a structuring phase. Nevertheless, 3 kinds of actors are appearing: • Cosmetics industry leaders These actors are the most powerful in the market.

They all have important financial and organisational ways to impose their products in the male market. They pursue a roll-over strategy close to the one used since a long time in the female market. Among the leaders: Beiersdorf with Nivea for Men, Clarins with Clarins Men, Estee Lauder with Aramis and Clinique, L’Oreal with Biotherm, Vichy, L’Oreal Paris and Lancome, and Shisheido with Shisheido, Jean-Paul Gaultier and Decleor. To keep their ranks, the leaders are now compelled to spread their product ranges to stay in the competition. Care universe actors Some brands benefit of a strong credibility thanks to the care market. This market has several advantages in the distribution network – pharmacies, institutes, spas – thanks to their support. Actually, these actors take advantage of the know-how and the credibility which characterize care and pharmaceutical world, and could get a determinant rank in the market. Brands and laboratories to know are for instance Pierre Fabre with Klorane, Sanofi-Aventis with Lipofactor, Phytomer and Decleor. • Independent cosmetics’ makers

They strongly stimulate the market by adapting their offer to men, but their diffusion stay confidential. To become strong, this group needs distributors to give visibility to beauty for men through specific spaces or special concepts. Independent makers have to use particular ways and specific concepts to introduce the market because they do not have the power of the market current players. Examples of independent makers are The Body Shop or Nickel. 2. 2. 3. Competition analysis • New entrants threat Cosmetics sector is a very competitive one where in which are many brakes.

Indeed, companies have to think about rules, high investments’ level, and scale economies. Innovation should be a primacy objective. However, research & development and communication costs are very high, and all companies can not invest heavily. This is of course not the case of firms such as L’Oreal, Nivea and Clarins, which already have a past fame very important. Thanks to this successful past, it would be hard for new entrants to find some place in the market. • Substitutes threat Substitutes are not a real threat in cosmetics’ market.

Yet, men use more and more aesthetic surgery. Actually, a patient on ten is a man. Today, men better assume their beauty’s envy. Most of men do not like going to buy beauty products. That is why they borrow them to their partners, who have, moreover, an adviser role. Finally, the distributors’ brands can be a threat. The market shares of these brands is growing more and more. Nevertheless, male products in supermarkets are often just shaving products and deodorants. • Suppliers’ power Suppliers’ power seems to be light as well.

Without big brands, suppliers and conditionment factories could not live. It is still important to keep good contacts with suppliers, especially those which have rare raw materials. • Customers’ power A company has always to maintain its sustainable advantage by creating original products, adapted to the market targets. It is difficult to attract man’s attention since he is maybe not used to buy cosmetic products. So it is necessary to know and to analyse his needs and wants, and to succeed to satisfy him: a satisfied man is a loyal consumer for a long time.