GDR’s innovation strategist Charlie Lloyd highlights five recent tech innovations that are helping brands to deliver hyper-personalised products to their customers.
Technology is enabling brands to offer personalisation to a degree almost unimaginable just a few years ago. Whereas a ‘personalised product’ might once have meant packaging with the customer’s name printed on it or a couple of finishing flourishes chosen by them in-store, the term is now coming to mean a hyper-personalised product based on the customer’s unique wants and needs.
Technology is powering this in three key ways. Firstly, sophisticated diagnostic tools are helping brands to identify the specific needs of the customer, whether it’s a beauty brand understanding their type of skin or a fashion brand identifying their precise dimensions. Then, technology is enabling those brands to react to that information by formulating products that meet those specific needs. And thirdly, brands are placing technology in the hands of consumers themselves to empower them to create products to their own exact preferences and specifications. In this article I highlight five recent examples of brands using technology in these ways to deliver hyper-personalised products to their customers.
Clinique Laboratories is a new retail concept from the skincare brand that personalises the store visit to each customer based on the results of facial scanning tools at the entrance.
This facial scanning system analyses the customer’s skin, the results of which serve as a launchpad for the rest of the customer’s store experience. The data will be used by the store associates to provide custom skincare and beauty recommendations.
The Wand by Opte is a dual-purpose beauty device that covers blemishes in the short-term, while actively working to repair hyperpigmentation in the longer term.
The hand-held “precision skincare” device essentially operates as a scanner and a 3D printer. Users move the device over the skin on their face and the integrated high-speed camera and blue light technology detects blemishes, including those under the skin. The device then creates and prints a personalised foundation serum on the affected areas to give the skin on the user’s face a uniform appearance. 5% of the serum is made up of niacinamide, which has been clinically proven to visibly reduce hyperpigmentation over time.
Google has developed an ‘AI-powered dermatology assist tool’ that smartphone users will be able to use to scan their skin, hair or nails to identify possible conditions. The tool is a web-based application that Google plans to launch later this year. The phone’s camera is used to scan the skin, hair or nails, before the user is asked a series of questions about the issue to help narrow down the list of possible diagnoses.
Salvatore Ferragamo has launched a new customisation service in which customers creating their own bespoke designs online can connect to store associates for advice. Should the consumer require any assistance or advice, they can tap a button that will connect them live to a store associate who, wearing a Microsoft Hololens headset, will be able to view their design and any changes made to it in real time, overlaid onto their view of the shop floor.
Routinely is a new tech-enabled personalised skincare brand that suggests unique daily skincare regimes for each user. The Belgian-Dutch company has created 13 serums that range from niacinamide, hyaluronic acid and retinol, to reishi fungus, bakuchiol and pumpkin enzymes. The accompanying Routinely app asks each user a wide range of questions about their skin, lifestyle and environmental factors before using an “advanced algorithm” to design personalised morning and evening routines for them using the range of serums.
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