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8/09/2018

'HIGH IMPACT' MAKEOVER FOR THE MAKEUP FIRM; NEW BOSS PLOTS

'HIGH IMPACT' MAKEOVER FOR THE MAKEUP FIRM NEW; NEW BOSS PLOTS

130-year-old Avon  beauty firm still known for its ‘Avon calling’ advertisements, has been looking a little worse for wear.

Its share price is in the doldrums, with many Western millennials knowing it only as the make-up brand their mothers, or even grandmothers, used.

But the global cosmetics stalwart has a new boss in tow, who has ordered Avon a dramatic makeover of its own to gird it against the proliferation of new, trendy upstarts making waves in the fast-paced beauty market.

For Avon, the challenge is two-fold: it’s not just about making British women want to buy its products again, it needs to find women to sell them too.

The company – wedded to its social selling model – currently hinges on the efforts of six million ‘Avon ladies’ worldwide, a number ambitious new chief executive Jan Zijderveld wants to double in the next five years.
Speaking to This is Money, Zijderveld says Avon is hoping to expand its pool of 100,000 UK sellers by piggybacking on the burgeoning gig economy.

‘There are lots of people looking for extra money, and high demand for part-time, flexible jobs, as Uber and firms like that are helping to grow the gig economy,’ he says.

Recruits have recently proven hard to come by in some of Avon’s markets, as the firm is plagued by its worn-out image, stiff competition and the false belief that to be an Avon Lady you have to trudge around town selling door-to-door.

But, according to Zijderveld, the number of representatives is on the up again, as a new generation of Avon lady emerges – or ‘e-beauty entrepreneur’, as he calls them.

While some sellers still like to make home calls, many more are now leveraging social media and using channels like Facebook Live, Snap Chat and Instagram to boost sales.

Some even post YouTube videos with makeup demonstrations to extend their reach further still and promote new products.
Sammy, a 23 year-old mum of two from Middlesex, works for Avon alongside studying with the Open University for a degree in Law. 

Her Avon business is entirely online and supported by a popular beauty blog.

Alongside the blog, Sammy has a YouTube channel with more than 2,000 subscribers through which she shares beauty best buys and make-up tutorials using Avon products, as well as other brands.

This helps her to get new Avon customers and keep existing clients happy too.



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