Sunday, 17 April 2011

Press launches: personality & approachability go a long way

Paul Smith chats to beauty bloggers in his office
(pic credit: Really Ree)

When I met with my lovely friend and fashion/beauty blogger Really Ree for lunch recently, she was buzzing from the Paul Smith launch she had just been to. Ree told me that not only had she met the fashion designer in person, what’s more the launch was an intimate affair in his own office rather than the usual kind of fragrance launches that tend to have huge crowds in a hired venue somewhere in London.

Ree raved about how nice and approachable Paul Smith was, and how optimistic and inspiring she found him (which was very fitting given that the launch was for his new fragrance, Optimistic.)

What really interested me over the next couple of weeks that followed was the bout of beauty blogger reviews about their encounters with Paul Smith, which all echoed Ree’s sentiments:
“I was expecting some kind of awkward corporate set-up followed by more awkward questions and even more awkward dingling around at the end. Upon arrival, I was nothing short of startled to be led straight up to his office and greeted by the man himself with a warm handshake and pat on the back. What followed has not only cemented my perception of the brand, but has also somewhat inspired me on a personal level too.” Fleur de Force

“Incredibly, we barely talked about [the fragrance], probably because Paul Smith is a real person and not a sales person.” Really Ree

“I'd expected some sort of blah Powerpoint presentation showing intense diagrams of top, middle and bottom notes along with a ton of those paper strips and a room that ends up smelling of vaguely floral boredom. Happily, I couldn't have been more wrong.” British Beauty Blogger

“What I took away from my encounter… I like the brand a lot more now I can put a face to it (plus the SS11 collection is divine). Also, you don’t have to be a stuck-up hard-nut to make it in such a competitive industry.” The Beauty Button

I found these reviews fascinating – not only did Paul Smith’s personal approach guarantee his new fragrance was reviewed by the bloggers, but they left with a very positive view of the Paul Smith brand as a whole, and in turn portrayed this positivity to their readers.

This to me is a perfect case study proving that in the beauty industry, personality, approachability and niceness go a long, long way to a brand’s success. And when beauty bloggers and journalists are attending multiple press launches on a daily basis, it is worth beauty PR companies and their brands providing them with an experience that’s different to the norm, as their appreciation and excitement about the event will be extended to your brands... and therefore their reviews of your brands.

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