How L'Oréal Group used sponsored ads and Amazon DSP to grow sales in the Middle East

L’Oréal’s GCC Consumer Product Division (L’Oréal Paris, Maybelline New York, Garnier, and NYX Professional) caters to a wide range of beauty product needs for consumers—from make-up to skin care, hair care, and hair coloration. L'Oréal’s objective was to grow sales on Amazon and reach more audiences. But, with so many products across so many different brands, they faced the difficult decision of choosing the most relevant strategy to introduce these products and brands to customers at the right time across the Beauty category.

In 2019, Racha Assi, L'Oréal's Digital Manager for the Consumer Products Division in the Middle East, turned to Amazon Ads to help expand and reinforce L’Oréal’s digital media mix and find additional ways to grow their audiences and continue the brand’s mission of “creating the beauty that moves the world.”

L’Oréal continued to refine its approach throughout the next two years with different Amazon Ads product solutions. And in 2021, L’Oréal identified the need to help inform customers about their brand product selection. With that goal in mind, L’Oréal worked with Amazon Ads to tailor a holistic full-funnel media approach that harnessed a multi-brand and omnichannel touchpoint marketing strategy, along with single and multi-brand Stores.

Informing the right audiences about relevant products

With so many products across so many different brands, L'Oréal needed to decide what were the most relevant products to introduce to customers at the right time. When customers navigate to Amazon to browse and purchase from the Beauty category, how does L’Oréal decide which of their many products they want to inform their customers about?

Together with Amazon Ads, L'Oréal created a two-tiered strategy addressing the intricacies of the full funnel.

L'Oréal worked with the Boston Consultancy Group Matrix to better understand their brand product positioning within the retail realm by classifying their products based on performance. For example, with ASINs that already had above-average sales and above-average traffic, L'Oréal would try to inform new-to-brand customers about these products since they were already performing well and could grow by reaching new customers. On the other hand, for ASINs with below-average sales and below-average traffic, L'Oréal would try to connect with customers who were loyal to the brand that might be interested in trying a new product from a brand they love.

Then, L'Oréal developed a multi-brand strategy that found a way to better inform customers about their products using Amazon’s first-party audience insights. For example, L’Oréal understood that new-to-beauty category customers tend to enter through "Eye" related products followed by "Lips." Customers are also searching to enhance the brightness and glow of their skin.

With these strategic insights in mind, L’Oréal leveraged the Amazon DSP full-funnel proposition to deliver on upper-funnel brand-building objectives, reaching audiences browsing across categories to drive mass awareness. This ultimately helped customers reach a multi-brand Store designed with a customer-first experience that allows shoppers to easily browse and select the most ideal products across all beauty categories. L’Oréal also used an always-on approach to maintain a consistent presence with customers on and off Amazon. Previously, L'Oréal had chosen to be more tactical with its advertising, but “we realized we can't just be sometimes available to consumers,” Assi said.

Along with Amazon DSP, L’Oréal used Sponsored Products and Sponsored Brands to help connect with Amazon shoppers at the right times, whether these were shoppers browsing L’Oréal’s brands or undecided customers. Additionally, L’Oréal leveraged Sponsored Display to drive cross-selling initiatives, helping customers complete their full make-up, skin, and hair care routines.

The power of a glamourous customer-centric approach

L'Oréal saw a 59% growth in their overall sales on Amazon.1 The brand also increased its return on ad spend by 54% more than the beauty industry benchmark.2 Additionally, L'Oréal was able to drive more than 50% of its total sales from non-branded queries, which helped them grow their market share through reaching new audiences.3

“It was phenomenal,“ Assi said. ”The Amazon DSP strategy coupled with sponsored ads was the secret recipe for our success. What we did, and what I would advise, is to always put the customer first. With that in mind, make sure you leverage all the tools Amazon Ads has at your disposal that makes sense for the customers’ journeys in your markets. Amazon Ads has a lot of tools that complement each other. And it’s crucial to have a super solid long-term strategy.

This successful strategy has really raised the bar for us so high,” Assi said. “This is now looked at as best practice. It was that impactful.”

Learn more about skin care advertising.

1-3 Advertiser-provided data, 2021