L'Oréal creates unique beauty experiences with a data-driven approach.
Discover how L’Oréal combines beauty and tech to deliver its most personalised experiences yet.
Throughout its history, L’Oréal has always combined the best of beauty and technology to deliver exceptional products and services. Today, the world’s number one beauty company is taking its consumer experience to the next level by undergoing a complete digital transformation.
Before L’Oréal even had a name, the beauty giant was disrupting its industry. It began in 1909 when a Parisian chemist and entrepreneur invented the first safe hair dye. Today, the company is pioneering the YSL Rouge Sur Mesure, a smart device that uses artificial intelligence to create custom lipsticks. It can even tailor shades to complement your outfit.
“Beauty is about individuality,” said Nicolas Hieronimus, CEO. “Therefore, we have to cater every solution and every product to an individual’s needs — the color of their skin, the shape of their brow, or their hair color.”
From the Age Perfect Midnight Serum by L’Oréal Paris, to the Curl Manifesto collection by Kérastase, to YSL’s Rouge Sur Mesure, L’Oréal’s product variety covers almost every consumer need imaginable. But the global beauty market is changing. Not only are new brands constantly appearing, but consumers are looking for more innovations, deeper connections with brands, and more exciting, personalised beauty experiences.
So how does the world’s number one beauty company, with 35 global brands selling six billion products per year, design millions of unique beauty journeys at scale?
By reinventing the beauty experience itself — embarking on a “Beauty Tech” transformation.
To L’Oréal, this means using technology to help consumers realise the potential of their own unique beauty. Yet, delivering a truly individualised experience requires connecting data from each touchpoint into a single source of truth about each consumer while respecting data privacy. That’s where Salesforce comes in.
Here’s an inside look at how Hieronimus and the team at L’Oréal use Salesforce Customer 360 to forge deeper relationships with consumers on a global scale.
“We’ve accumulated a century-long goldmine of data solely about beauty. Today, our ambition is to transform this treasure into the ultimate consumer beauty experience — while, of course, respecting data privacy.”
The future of beauty is built with data.
1. Strengthen consumer relationships by personalising every interaction.
L’Oréal’s 35 brands, including iconic names like L’Oréal Paris, Maybelline New York, YSL Beauté, and La Roche-Posay, are as diverse and unique as the consumers they serve. To bring the best of these brands to consumers around the world, L’Oréal has to create beauty journeys tailor-made to each consumer’s taste, budget, and shopping habits.
“Our growth comes from attracting new consumers and increasing the lifetime value of these consumers,” said Hieronimus. “It’s about making each consumer happy and satisfied with the products and services we deliver, each time they come into contact with L’Oréal.”
To make every consumer experience as relevant and personalised as possible, the company implemented Marketing Cloud, currently live across 13 brands. With Marketing Cloud Personalisation, L’Oréal builds individual consumer journeys, delivered through preferred channels such as email and social media, from real-time and historical data. This allows the company to send consumers tailored product recommendations, beauty advice, or special offers automatically — wherever they prefer to shop.
For instance, when consumers use the skin diagnosis service on Lancôme’s mobile site, the company can email them their results and continue the engagement by recommending tailored regimens and products. If their shopping journey gets disturbed by a phone call or an urgent text message, the engagement doesn’t have to end there. Using Journey Builder, Lancôme can send consumers automated abandoned cart emails so they can pick up exactly where they left off.
‘‘Messaging based on shopping habits and use of Salesforce services powers our quest to bring greater personalisation, relevance, and satisfaction to our consumers in this ever-evolving and complex beauty consumer journey,” said Asmita Dubey, Chief Digital & Marketing Officer.
2. Boost direct-to-consumer revenue with unique shopping experiences.
L’Oréal wants to drive consumer engagement and loyalty across its brands. To achieve this goal, there’s only one place to start: designing consistent, integrated shopping experiences tailored to each consumer.
Commerce Cloud provides the foundation for connected online shopping across more than 200 of L’Oréal’s D2C websites. Einstein Product Recommendations delivers AI-powered product recommendations based on a consumer's browsing or purchase history. For example, if you add lightweight sunscreen to your cart, Einstein may recommend SPF lip-balms or moisturizers at checkout.
“We use Einstein because it allows us to analyse the shopping habits of our consumers,” said Dubey. “Then we can make predictive product recommendations. This technology has generated 15% to 20% of sales for one of our B2C brands.”
So far, L’Oréal has seen double-digit increases in average order value (AOV) from its B2C websites.
But shopping habits aren’t the only thing that L’Oréal analyses online. Some of its brands, like Kiehl’s, can analyse your skin, too.
Through the Kiehl’s website’s “Healthy Skin Hub,” you can use the Instant Skin Reader to find the right skin care products for you. The Instant Skin Reader uses AI to scan your face, identify your skin type and conditions, and use an algorithm to recommend personalised next steps and the right product regimen to achieve healthy skin. You can even talk to a skincare consultant via chat, or stop by your local Kiehl’s store if you prefer an in-person consultation. And whether you do the consultation online or offline, your personal data is always secure.
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3. Improve agent satisfaction by 70% while elevating consumer care.
Despite millions of consumer interactions taking place online, having data dispersed across different systems prevented L’Oréal’s service teams from delivering the ultimate personalised care consumers wanted. Now the company uses Service Cloud to consolidate data across brands and channels, such as SMS, chat, and email, into a single view of each consumer. From a single dashboard, agents can pull up consumers’ service and purchase history, view the status of their orders, and even see activity updates in real time.
For instance, a consumer may order the YSL Rouge Sur Mesure online. Due to supply chain issues, the order triggers a “process exception — fulfillment issue” error, which automatically creates and routes a case to an agent. With the product and shipment information already in the system, the agent can proactively submit a “reship” order before the consumer even knows about the issue. This lets brands ensure that products will get to their consumers in a timely manner — without them having to reach out or follow up.
The employee experience is also better. In L’Oréal’s North American region, Einstein chatbots deflect basic cases and show agents options to personalise messages. Einstein automatically classifies email cases, too, which reduces busywork and gives agents more time to connect with consumers. As a result, agent satisfaction scores are up by 70%.
4. Recreate in-store interactions virtually — and boost Beauty Tech adoption by 336%.
“Technology is moving fast, and competition is running after us. When we saw the development of this new technology and the possibilities with smartphones and virtual reality, we had to jump on it.”
If you’d like personal assistance creating a new look, you can also start a virtual beauty consultation right from live chat. Using AppExchange partner app SightCall, the company enables video chat consultations for its L’Oréal Paris hair color, where you can use the Virtual Try On feature to experiment with different hair colors and choose the right shade for you.
Since launching its virtual consultation service, the company has seen a 336% increase in the number of virtual try-ons for its L’Oréal Paris hair dye.
5. Drive B2B revenue by helping sales reps accomplish more in less time.
As L’Oréal deepens its relationships with consumers through Beauty Tech innovations and personalised experiences, it has also set its sights on another customer base: beauty professionals.
Using B2B Commerce Cloud, L’Oréal plans to elevate the relationship it has with professional customers, such as salons and independent stylists. This will allow the company to become a true one-stop-shop for beauty professionals, who will be able to find everything they need in a virtual marketplace to serve their clients — from luxury hair masks to eco-friendly salon tools.
L’Oréal is also investing in its relationships with retailers and the sales teams that serve them. Consumer Goods Cloud helps sales reps ensure that retailers, like pharmacies and grocery stores, are stocked with the right products so that consumers can always find what they want.
Consumer Goods Cloud helps L'Oréal manage trade promotion, plan store visits, optimise field execution, automate in-store tasks, and even train store associates. If a store is missing a certain shade of foundation, for example, visiting sales reps can place an order or check pricing accuracy directly from their tablet, regardless of connectivity. They can also pull up store performance data to review with management, view diagrams of where products should be placed on shelves, and check inventory levels for other products, all while keeping each customer’s data secure.
6. Use the power of Beauty Tech to become more inclusive and sustainable.
Like innovation, diversity and inclusivity are in L’Oréal’s DNA. This has led the company to create increasingly personalised products and services with the power of Beauty Tech.
For example, Le Teint Particulier from Lancôme is an in-store service that creates custom foundations. It begins with an in-store beauty advisor scanning your face. From there, a patented algorithm analyses the data and determines your ideal shade and formulates a personalised foundation in 20 minutes. In addition to the shade, you can also choose your preferred level of coverage and hydration. In total, this service offers 72,000 different combinations.
L’Oréal is also committed to the beauty of the planet by reducing its environmental footprint and fighting climate change, deforestation, and water scarcity. In 2021, the company partnered with Swiss environmental start-up Gjosa to develop the L’Oréal Professional Water Saver, a new technology that helps reduce water consumption by 60%. Named in TIME’s 100 Best Inventions of 2021, this specially designed showerhead creates water droplets that are 10 times smaller while increasing the pressure for more efficient hair rinsing. This cuts water use by 60% compared with standard rinsing. This new system is expected to be in 10,000 salons in the next few years, potentially saving billions of liters of water every year.