Almay has revealed actress, screenwriter and producer Rashida Jones as its first Almay Insider. The newly created role follows the announcement earlier this summer of a campaign called Reveal the True You designed to celebrate individual beauty.
Jones, who is biracial, (she's the daughter of Quincy Jones and Peggy Lipton) is a snug fit with Almay's new inclusive positioning. Jones will star in a series of digital videos showcasing her comedic talents as she takes on the persona of an Almay Mega Influencer. She even assumed the lead in writing the content, which begins airing on Almay's social channels on Sept. 7.
Jones takes a lighthearted approach concerning the stress faced trying to make daily situations look perfect on social media. Jones' content can be seen on Almay's social channels which include Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
"There is so much pressure to portray an idyllic life, especially through social media, and honestly, does anyone really have the picture-perfect Matcha Latte every day?" stated Jones. "It was this thought that sparked the idea of showing what my life as an influencer would really be like, behind the curtain, imperfectly perfect."
Almay hopes the message will strike a chord with younger consumers who perhaps haven't tried Almay, or to encourage consumers to return to the brand. The Reveal the True You is an all-encompassing program including new packaging, a new logo, updated brand imagery and more diverse faces to represent the brand.
Industry sources estimate Almay's sales have dipped to about $175 million, but retailers said they've already seen an uptick in the brand as owner Revlon puts more muscle behind it. Revlon does not break out Almay's sales and does not comment on estimates. However, Revlon's chief creative officer Linda Wells told WWD this summer that "Almay is getting some much-deserved love."
A few standouts emerging in Almay's lineup, according to IRI data for the 52-week period ended July 9, 2017 in multiunit doors, are Almay Age Essentials Lip Treatment where sales soared more than 700 percent and Almay eye liners where sales rose 17 percent.
While Almay maintained a presence in most mass-market doors, its footage was compressed at some chains to make room for upstart brands such as E.l.f. or NYX. But Almay is fighting back and in an earnings call last month, Revlon's chief financial officer Chris Peterson added there were commitments to gain space for the brand as part of the restage.
Paramount in the effort is the commitment to broadening product offerings and shade ranges to match demands of today's consumers, especially those who want darker hues. During a recent tour of a restaged Wal-Mart store in New Jersey, the chain's executives said broadening shades ranges is a major push at the retailer.
While retailers said they've seen blueprints before to spark sales in the 86-year-old Almay nameplate, Wells assured them this rendition is a holistic plan fine-tuned to connect with consumers. Jones will be part of that playbook.
She'll join four diverse influencers who kicked off the phased roll-out in July with a docu-style social video series which lives on the brand's Instagram and Facebook pages. The influencers - Chachi Gonzales (@chachigonzales), Wendy Nguyen (@wendyslookbook), Nadia Aboulhosn (@nadiaaboulhosn) and Nikia Phoenix (@nikiaphoenix) - share stories of what beauty means to them, and encouraging others to do the same.
"Our new Almay campaign seeks to widen what 'beautiful' means, and drive conversation around individual beauty," said Antonette Bivona, marketing director at Almay. "Almay believes makeup should be used to flaunt your unique personality, not hide who you are. We want to empower Almay fans to express what beauty means to them, and provide them the products that help them do so."
Almay will continue to roll out the refreshed look and more personalized voice globally through early 2018.