One real-life example of needs analysis marketing is that of the NIVEA brand, a widely recognized skin, and beauty care brand in the world. Launched in 1911, NIVEA traditionally sold women’s beauty products such as sun care, facial moisturizers, deodorants and shower products. In 1980, it launched its NIVEA FOR MEN brand that included deodorants, shower products, and a non-alcoholic aftershave balm that became very popular and helped the brand gain widespread social acceptance.
The successful branching out to men products that helped NIVEA was the result of a properly done marketing need analysis. NIVEA leveraged its knowledge of skincare products to fulfill a growing and pressing need in the market for men’s skincare products, especially something that protected the face after shaving.
NIVEA’s initiative was based on its clear cut corporate objective of “increasing market share through qualitative growth, and improving earnings performance to meet consumers wishes and needs with innovations today and in the future, and thereby secure a strong position within the global competitive environment."
NIVEA first assessed the market. It understood what its male customers wanted. A study of the environment confirmed men were willing to buy a product that would calm and soothe their skin irritated by shaving.
An SWOT analysis looked at the internal and external strengths of the business in fulfilling the need, and included an assessment of the brand’s position and the state of the market. The company already had a strong presence in women’s skincare products, and could easily use the same production, distribution, and promotional set-up for its men’s products. The team used research data to forecast market trends over the next three-to-five years, which helped them set specific targets for sales, market growth, and improving brand image. The analysis also considered the state of competitor products in the market.
The company used celebrity driven radio, television, and press advertising, adopted experiential activities that engaged consumers through two-way communications, and provided free samples. Such initiatives brought brand personalities to life and added value to the target audience.
The focus on product development combined with an emphasis on needs analysis helped NIVEA retain in position a market leader in the male facial skincare market, especially in UK.