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Methods & Processes
Formulators and Marketers: Working Better Together
By: Nancy Trent, Trent & Co.
Posted: November 26, 2008, from the December 2008 issue of Cosmetics & Toiletries.
page 3 of 6
While a handful of companies big and small have solid working relationships between formulators and marketers, others could learn how to benefit from one another. As with any business, opening the lines of communication is key.
“When representatives of formulators and marketers team together to receive and share comments, no one has misaligned expectations as to form, function, cost and claims,” said Jeffrey Light, retired founder of Jason Natural Cosmetics, who now serves as a strategic planning advisor and corporate consultant at Better Business Building Coaching.
Formulators could be more effective and especially time- and cost-efficient if they knew what marketers were looking for, such as popular claims and ingredients or packaging trends. What properties or claims are in vogue—is it antiaging or green? What ingredients are popular and which ones are on the rise—is it resveratrol, açai, green tea or polypeptides? How important is packaging—will it sell the product?
Marketers could be more successful if they knew what was behind the products they represent. Is a new ingredient being used because a significant amount of compelling research has recently been published? Are the ratios of ingredients important to the functionality of the product? What about new research in preservatives? Why is the product packaged in certain ways? Formulators need to tell marketers about all of the latest industry news that they are privy to.
Large manufacturers often have highly developed teams dedicated to research and development, and an entirely separate team for sales and marketing. The first step is bridging this gap. How? Monthly or even weekly meetings where each team presents its current projects, upcoming initiatives, success stories and trouble spots can promote closure of the gap, as will brainstorming about how each team can help the other.