an Ad a Day

A look at the marketing that surrounds us.

Mary Kay: Bendable Make-Up?

Posted by Rosepixie on January 27, 2010

Mary-Kay is like Avon, it’s make-up you don’t buy in a store, but rather from your local “representative”.  Basically, usually you have to know someone who sells it to get it (although I think they have an online database to help you find local reps now).  And yet, they have commercials.

Besides the fact that I find it odd that there are commercials for a product line that you can’t just go buy, this is an odd ad in and of itself.  Unlike most beauty ads, it’s totally unfocused.  It shows skin care products and make-up in the same ad and it never mentions any actual product names.  Since part of the point of the sales model is that each rep can sell things her own way – sort of create her own sales pitch – I guess that makes sense.  It just makes for an ad that tells us nothing about why we should care about the products and little about why we should care about the brand.

Branding, which I talked about yesterday with Toyota, can be a really good thing.  But this ad seems to be trying to do branding and sort of failing, in my opinion.  It’s chaotic and while the voice over talks about the ability to have beauty “your way” and implies that they allow for a flexibility other lines don’t, that isn’t evident at all.  The models all look sort of the same (which is typical for beauty ads) and even the voice over talks about trends and “modern beauty”.  So all we see is that this brand is exactly like everybody else.  And the feel is more “trendy” than “flexible”, so the impression I walked away with was that this was just another brand of make-up like everything else available at the drug store.

And that’s very bad branding.  The point is to stand out, not make yourself fade in even more!


One Response to “Mary Kay: Bendable Make-Up?”

  1. Kathleen said

    I didn’t like the voice-over at all. She sounded perky and girly, more appropriate for Covergirl than Mary Kay. It would have been better to go with a more mature, confident voice, I think.

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