International Marketing Essay

2306 Words10 Pages
International Marketing

The Cosmetics Industry

Estee Lauder vs. Shiseido Cosmetics

Introduction

The cosmetics business is a billion dollar industry. Every year, women are responsible for consuming millions of cosmetic products. The cosmetics industry is so large because of several factors. The media is a huge contributor to the intense pressure to look a certain way. The idea that “sex sells” is evident in gossip magazines, movies, advertisements, music, and more subtly- in the business world. People first notice what race someone is, how beautiful or ugly they are and what clothes they are wearing. Beauty is skin deep; however, first impressions are usually what others use to base their personal judgments. In
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I met students in China who had never gone to the bars before, especially with American students, and there were many students who still chose not to make an exception because they are responsible. Don’t get me wrong, I believe that the Chinese do care about looking pretty, but they will not put precedence of looking attractive if it means it will prevent them from getting things done.

I also visited a shopping mall in Shanghai. A particular department store offered a variety of cosmetic brands, most of which I recognized and am familiar with. I was surprised to see that Maybeline, a cosmetic brand sold in discount stores such as Target, had a large kiosk complete with sales representatives. Although there were a variety of American and European cosmetic brands being offered at this department store, about half were advertised with European models. I expected to see predominantly Chinese or Asian models. In Nebraska, we seldom ever see any Asian models featured in cosmetic advertisements because there isn’t a large demographic of Asians here, but the difference is that China does not have a highly contrasting, diverse, racial population. So, it would have seemed logical to expect Chinese faces in all cosmetic/retail advertisements, but it wasn’t so.

The Products

Cosmetics are almost a universal product for women around the world. According to market research, four out of five women wear

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