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The background

E.T. Browne Drug Co. is a family-owned business, and one of America’s oldest skincare companies, manufacturing products in the US since 1840. Today, their brand Palmer’s has gained international recognition and become a global skincare solutions provider available in more than 80 countries worldwide. Focused on delivering luxurious and naturally inspired products, Palmer’s is now the #1 Cocoa Butter brand in the US. Over the years, it has become a household name providing treatment-oriented products that have been trusted by families and used by generations.

During the Covid pandemic, Palmer’s was looking to drive visitors into big box retailers carrying their products as an effort to help consumers who were suffering from dry skin due to increased handwashing and sanitizing.

The strategy

To make its brand stand out and help dry skin sufferers, Palmer’s partnered with drive-to-store platform S4M to develop a custom drive-to-store strategy to promote its ‘Dry Hands’ products to consumers in the US. As one of the top skincare solutions providers in the country, Palmer’s wanted to raise brand awareness by engaging with users to drive incremental visits to big box retailers - visits solely attributable to its advertising efforts. More specifically, it wanted to increase its visibility and boost the sales of its ‘Dry Hands’ line to provide some much-needed relief for customers suffering from dry skin, all the while optimizing ad spend. Palmer’s also wanted to deliver a seamless mobile advertising experience for enhanced user engagement throughout the online journey.

The size of the US cosmetics and beauty industry and the countless product options available for customers combine to make it a near impossible task for a brand to identify in-market customers who will choose it, and stick with it. To ensure a successful advertising campaign, S4M needed to engage those customers who, with the right prompting, could be driven to visit a Palmer’s big box retailer, instead of reaching out to all skincare enthusiasts in general.

The process

S4M developed a custom mobile-only drive-to-store strategy to promote Palmer’s ‘Dry Hands’ product range and help consumers suffering from dry skin. S4M combined dynamic geo-targeting and custom audience targeting, all delivered through engaging creative ad formats, to give more reach to the cosmetics heavyweight’s advertising and drive visitors into big box retailers carrying its products.

The month-long campaign was targeted around major designated market areas in the US, including New York, Atlanta, Los Angeles, Washington DC, and Chicago. The ad formats leveraged S4M’s proprietary Dynamic Catchment Area (DCA) geotargeting tool and Fusio, its drive-to-store platform, to target people based on real world behavior, and reach devices with a high geo-affinity to Walmart or Target physical retail locations within a short drive time – 10 to 15 minutes at a push. S4M also identified women, aged 21-45, who were purchasers of skincare products, as well as Walmart or Target shoppers.

The creatives targeted the brand’s specific audiences with the ads that were best suited to their lifestyles and browsing environments. Those users were delivered native-like ad experiences which ultimately redirected them to a store locator, using their real-time location to deliver a live map with directions to the closest retailer carrying Palmer’s products.

S4M’s DCA geolocation technology enabled Palmer’s to focus on shopper affinity areas with a high saturation of potential buyers within an optimal travel time to retailers and the highest conversion potential. Thanks to its proprietary drive-to-store platform, S4M ensured said retailers received maximum incremental visits at a time when getting people to step out of their homes was a real challenge.

The results

The S4M and Palmer’s campaign was live in-market from May to June 2020, and delivered nearly 3 million impressions, all fully rendered in brand-safe environments. The campaign was very successful and resulted in driving an impressive 27,736 in-store visits to the specified retailer locations, garnering a 0.38% click-through rate above the standard benchmark.

S4M’s DCA tool had a significant impact on driving visits for the brand, accounting for 93% of total visits. On average, users went to visit their nearest retailer location within less than three weeks of exposure to the ad creative, particularly on Saturdays during peak lunchtime hours.

Overall, the campaign delivered an increase of consumer visits on behalf of the Palmer’s brand, helping provide those people with relief for their dry skin and furthering the brand’s position as the leader in skincare solutions.

In the words of Dalia Levi, senior director digital marketing at Palmer’s: “As a result of S4M’s drive-to-store technology, we delivered an engaging mobile campaign that increased brand awareness among consumers and drove them to our key retailer partners to purchase Palmer’s Cocoa Butter Formula products to relieve their dry skin.”