Now, if you’re a geek, when you hear Mac you think MacIntosh…. as in the computer. While Apple computer has, in the past committed more than it’s fair share of branding boo boos, they have definitely LEARNED from the experience and are currently riding an immensely entertaining and profitable wave with their latest campaign.
No, this is about MAC cosmetics, a division of Estee Lauder. MAC cosmetics is a socially conscious brand designed with the hip young socially aware woman in mind. In a brilliant marketing move, the company created a product called Viva Glam lipstick. 100% of the selling price of the lipstick or lipglass goes to the Mac Aids Fund, which since 1994 has contributed over $85 million to organizations that provide services and care for people infected and affected by HIV/AIDS.
Every cent of the purchase price of a Viva Glam lipstick or lipglass goes to the AIDS fund! Fans claim the colors are beautiful, but what really strikes the heart of the socially conscious young woman is that by purchasing lip enhancement, they are also doing a good deed!
MAC Cosmetics has launched a new product line: Barbie Loves MAC line with a tag line of: “specially created for all you living dolls”.
“This is intended to be a very sophisticated makeup collection, designed for adults â€” not children,” says Peter Lichtenthal, general manager of MAC Cosmetics.
Um, rule of thumb for any one in charge of launching a marketing campaign…. when you have to issue a disclaimer before you launch the campaign, it’s time to go BACK to the drawing board.
According to Susan Wagner at BlogHer,
The line targeted young, socially conscious, politically liberal women like myself, women who were coming into our own financially and who were making adult decisions about how to change the world at the same time that we were learning to put our best face forward. MAC hired transvestite pop star RuPaul as the line’s first spokes model, tapping directly into the desire of GenX women to be seen as powerful figures who could transcend the cultural limits of traditional gender stereotypes.
Rupaul is a great choice of spokesperson for such a line. I mean, come on… here’s a rather ORDINARY looking man who transforms himself into a SPECTACULAR looking woman through the power of make up!
Not so brillant…. tapping an “American Icon” that is anything BUT beloved by the target audience.
I’m sure there will be sales of the “living doll” product…but at what cost? Fortunately, web 2.0 can give MAC some insight into how their new “Living Doll” line is resonating with loyal customers.