What Is Natural? 4 Definitions to End Customer Confusion
The consumer demand for scientifically supported natural skin care treatments is real and quantifiable. A study by beauty brand Yes To found that 50 percent of customers buy natural beauty products, while another 8 percent would like to purchase them.
For skin care brands looking to appeal to those consumers, it is critical to have a clear understanding of what “natural” really means, along with many of the other related buzzwords.
Knowing What’s What
A Kantar Worldpanel consumer survey found that 32 percent prefer products that use natural or organic ingredients. As expectations for that market continue to grow, brands should continue to educate the public on terminology specific to the industry. Here are four phrases to focus on:
- Natural: Let’s start with the basics. Natural refers to ingredients that remain in their natural form, with zero processing. Some examples include fresh-squeezed orange juice, cold-pressed olive oil, and sea salt.
- Naturally-derived: These are materials found in nature that have undergone minimal processing. Some examples are refined coconut oil, vegetable glycerin, chamomile extract, and green tea extract, to name a few.
- Organic: Basically refers to ingredients that were once living. These are plant- or animal-based materials that may undergo some processing but don’t contain man-made fertilizer, pesticides, growth regulators, livestock feed additives, irradiation, or genetically modified organisms.
- Botanical: Ingredients derived directly from plants. Sweet almond oil, kale, and green tea fall into this category.
In addition to understanding the meaning of particular buzzwords, companies should ensure all products adhere to U.S. Food and Drug Administration regulations before putting them on the shelves. The agency won’t hesitate to send warning letters to companies that make unsubstantiated claims about their products. Recently, several companies have seen the repercussions of improper claims, which has resulted in notices from the FDA and a loss of trust with customers.
Create a culture of transparency within your brand, promoting it from within and in all aspects of your marketing, much the same way SC Johnson has. The household cleaning supply company recently announced its intent to reveal 380 potential skin allergens its products might contain. Because many consumers prefer brands be more candid with ingredients, SC Johnson’s move is seen as a step toward solidifying customer satisfaction and trust.
Just keep it simple, and be as transparent as possible. The customer is king, and our companies exist because of them. Let’s make sure they feel valued by our consistent honesty.