For the last couple of years, we’ve seen a sudden influx of countless trends and fads that could hardly keep our interest for longer than two weeks. This is the reason beauty brands think twice before venturing outside their comfort zone, which, in turn, explains why many brands haven’t explored the potential of the African beauty market.
Global brands like MAC and L’Oréal are great examples of companies branching out to locations outside their continent, as we can see in their efforts to establish themselves in African cities like Lagos and Abidjan. But to successfully tap into this growing market without missing the mark, you need to focus on hyper-localization. What makes each market unique?
Stats on the African Beauty Market
The specific figures change depending on the country. The Nigerian beauty market is set to be worth more than $2.2 billion by this time next year, according to Euromonitor International. Therefore, it is not at all surprising that major names are actively trying to include this country in their business dealings. BASF, an important pigment supplier to the beauty and cosmetics industry, has recognized the value this African nation has to offer and is opening its latest Application Technology Laboratory in the country.
Similarly, South Africa is another country with a booming beauty and personal care industry that often pops up on the radar of many beauty brands. However, the market in this country is vastly different from that in Nigeria. Since it is known as the gateway to the African continent, South Africa has traditionally attracted the most attention of all the African countries. But Cape Town beauty industry mogul, John Knowlton, has commented that the efforts of big brands have sometimes come off as misguided since they “don’t really understand the country.”
Implementing Marketing Strategies Internationally
Strategies that may be obvious in America will not necessarily translate effectively on another continent. Therefore, it is crucial to identify which approaches the local brands typically employ. One clear example is how influencer marketing differs in some African markets. Considering their infamous reputations, the sponsorship of actresses, TV stars, or musicians are infinitely more effective than peer-to-peer recommendations. If you’re trying to use the marketing strategies for beauty brands that you normally use in America, you’ll soon realize that a one-size-fits-all approach, like contacting a local social media star with a dedicated audience, will not produce the most ideal results.
How to Tap into the African Beauty Market
Tapping into the African beauty market is all about understanding what works in a specific country, and what doesn’t. Given the scale of the market alone, most beauty brands should already be pondering ways to manufacture products and provide a better service to African consumers, depending on the individual country and economy. But above all, beauty brands need to start venturing outside of their usual markets and target audiences, adapting to local marketing approaches, distribution methods, and any other aspect of the business.