Manscaped has made its name by getting funny celebrities to talk about their nether regions. Now it's using the same tactic to take on the more crowded facial hair category and the introduction of its Beard Hedger.
Marcelo Kertész, chief marketing officer of the San Diego-based company, tells D2C Insider about the launch via email.
D2C Insider: To introduce the new Beard Hedger, you’ve built the new spot around Pete Davidson's inability to grow a full beard and recruiting a fake Pete Davidson as a stand-in. And there’s another using John Daly, the bushy-bearded golfer. Is there much of a difference between the people you're targeting with your beard products and those designed for pubic hair? And how is the launch going? What percentage of sales might come from facial products?
Marcelo Kertész: Our beard line launched very recently, introducing the Beard Hedger and The Beard Hedger Pro Kit to our lineup. These are products that our consumers have been requesting for quite some time, and we are getting extremely positive signs and great reviews. It is still early to talk about the percentage of sales, but so far, the launches have been showing great early traction–beyond our expectations. It is especially reassuring when you consider that this is happening in a very traditional, crowded and commoditized space.
D2C Insider: Manscaped debuted the first spot starring Davidson over the holidays. What's the audience's reaction?
Kertész: We are getting great attention and response, from the holiday and for every piece of content we develop together.
D2C Insider: You've also used funny athletes in ads, including NFL great Rob Gronkowski. Why are celebrities the right way to go for brand awareness at this point?
Kertész: Today, the most important aspect when partnering with a celebrity is authenticity. Your brand partners are now part of your positioning, and consumers can smell a fake relationship a mile away. That's why Pete Davidson is such a strong fit. His sense of humor, his unconventional attractiveness, even how he embodies modern masculinity…these are all spaces where we share very similar stances.
On top of that, his passion for our groin trimmer comes from way before we started working together. I learned from his mother herself that she was the one who introduced him to the brand, buying him The Lawn Mower as a Christmas gift. You can't get more real than that.
D2C Insider: Manscaped is an inherently funny brand — humor is tricky in ads. The risk is always that a viewer will remember how funny the ad is and forget the brand. How are you managing that risk?
Kertész: Because Pete has been a true fan of our brand, it is very easy to create authentic stories around our products. We work closely with his team of writers to really capture his true voice and the essence of how he feels about a certain product. With that, we can create entertaining and memorable content that works for the brand — also, the fact that humor has always been part of our brand identity helps a lot. If you see a funny trimmer ad, you will likely think it came from Manscaped.
D2C Insider:You have an unlikely background for jokes about pubic hair, including lots of work on political campaigns in your native Brazil. How are political ads like men's grooming?
Kertész: It is a unique background. I developed strategy and creative for seven presidential campaigns in five different countries in my past life. This helps me immensely at Manscaped. For me, the main similarities can be found in being obsessively strategic, having a deep understanding of your audience, agility in the execution, and most importantly, learning to deliver consistent messages in different formats to reach a wide variety of channels and audiences.
My past political work was like altitude training — you learn to work in an extremely fast and high-stress environment, so when you come down to sea level, you have a performance advantage and the ability to remain focused and calm in any situation. And both environments inspire and demand a lot of passion.