The Lipstick Factor
During the start of 2008 make-up giants L'Oreal and Estee Lauder knew we were facing a global recession.
How they knew was because sales of lipstick over that period were on the increase.
The last time they had witnessed such a jump from normal sales figures was in the months following 9/11. The world entered recession soon after.
Ok so what's this all about?
Rather than loose the spending habit, consumers simply trade down to cheaper items during hard times to cheer themselves up. And women, when they are forced to cut back on life’s other luxuries, they feel lipsticks and other cosmetic items as a reasonable indulgence and a guilt-free pick-me-up at department stores.
There are losts of "lipstick" indicators that apply accross industry and market segments that serve to indicate changes in consumer sentemet towards thier economic situation.
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Every industry has what could be called their "alert" indicators that, like "the canary in the mine" foretell that all is not well, that something is happening that is worth a second look or that a big shift is happening.
Natural indicators for those who observe nature are the frantic ant activity before it rains or the activity of certain birds when a storm is brewing or the unsettled behaviour that my German Shepherd dog shows about 8 hours before a thunderstorm begins.
Hwo does the LipStick Factor impact on your business?