Eos is coming out of its shell.
The 10-year-old skin-care brand, best known for its lip balm’s egg-shaped packaging is rebooting the brand and quadrupling its media spend year over year to do so. The company will spend the majority of its dollars on digital video, adding OTT channels for the first time and it has plans to experiment with a TikTok campaign.
At the same time, Eos is overhauling its current product line-up, its package design and its brand voice. Overall, Eos is set to double the size of its product portfolio with the release of 40 new products over the coming months. The company is not only dealing with more competition in the market as demand for natural lip care products has grown significantly, per Radiant Insights, but also looking to give its reputation a boost, as lawsuits claiming the brand caused rashes and blisters hurt the brand in 2016.
“We had this amazing stratospheric rise in growth, which continued on for several years,” said CMO Soyoung Kang, of Eos’ early years in the market. “Then, the last few years have been a little bit more of a mature growth phase for us. … We’re still a top brand in the category that we dominate, which is in lip balm. We’ve entered into other categories and really disrupted them as well, most notably in the shave cream area. But we really thought 10 years in was a great time to grow [and retell our story].”
In 2018, Eos spent $387,000 in media, down from $4.7 million in 2017, according to Kantar, which doesn’t measure spending on social platforms.
“The fact that we’re rebooting the brand this year, obviously means it’s going to come with a heavier investment,” said Kang, adding that Eos is looking to communicate to consumers the company’s roots in using natural ingredients and the benefits of that for the product, something the brand hadn’t always pushed in its marketing. “Our messaging was not telling that story. We needed to tell that story to grow.”
In recent years, Eos has spent 95% of its media budget on digital channels, as that’s where its target audience — Gen Z and millennials — spend much of their time. “Even if our products are actually primarily being sold offline and in brick and mortar, which still continues to be the majority of our business, we want to be able to speak to our consumer where they are,” said Kang.
This year, Eos will spend 53% of its media budget on digital channels including a variety of video distribution platforms like YouTube and other channels, custom content partnerships and hyper-targeted display ads aimed at Gen-Z and millennial women. Another 13% of the budget will go to OTT channels, like Roku and Hulu. The company will also show up on linear TV with a small market run in Atlanta.
Overhauling the brand and reintroducing it to consumers with a big campaign makes sense to Ben Weiss, director of client strategy for SocialCode. In recent years, the company faced consumer backlash and lawsuits that upended its position in the marketplace and its heavy reliance on influencers like Miley Cyrus and Kim Kardashian didn’t help it weather that storm. Now, by touting product benefits rather than influencer partnerships, Weiss believes Eos will be able to better connect with consumers.
Roughly 27% of the budget will be used for digital shopper marketing initiatives while 7% is reserved for experimental formats like TikTok.
Next month, Eos will also roll out a campaign on TikTok that will include a hashtag challenge that will incorporate its new tagline, “Make It Awesome,” from its creative and media agency Mekanism.