Procter & Gamble helped Walmart recognize February’s designation as Black History Month in stores last month.
The manufacturer brought its haircare brands’ “Crowns of Heritage” campaign to the mass merchant’s beauty department as the retailer continues to expand and elevate its assortment of products designed for ethnic hair types to fill what has been a void in the market for Black consumers.
The national effort had P&G’s Royal Oils by Head & Shoulders and Gold Series from Pantene partnering with lineage database AfricanAncestry.com to trace the lineages of the teams behind the brands and stage a month-long, national sweepstakes awarding 50 DNA test kits giving winners the ability to find out more about their identity.
“Our team of Black scientists has made understanding our hair their mission, using specialized testing protocols on hair samples from people of African descent to ensure optimal performance and best-in-class product benefits,” said Dr. Rolanda Wilkerson, principal scientist of P&G Beauty, in a media release. “Royal Oils and Gold Series are #RootedInScience, and that underpins all we do to ensure we deliver products that truly serve Black consumers. We turned to science in this campaign and our formulas to deepen the connection with the larger community, for a deeper understanding of our heritage and products designed for them.”
At Walmart, the brands plugged the sweeps with a “Celebrate Your Crown” sidekick that depicted a QR code linking to the entry page (crownsofheritage.com) while providing prime secondary merchandising space for a variety of products from the two brands. Co-op display ads running on websites such as webmd.com supported.
Among additional brand activity:
Johnson & Johnson deployed a side panel for its Johnson’s brand touting products “for your kid’s unique hair type” and directing shoppers into Walmart’s hair care aisle.
Hairitage updated its offering of products for “diverse hair needs” since its 2020 Walmart debut and now commands a new endcap display in the retailer’s beauty department.
Unilever's Shea Moisture worked with Walmart to curate a limited-edition "Black founders beauty box" delivering an inclusive collection of hair care, skincare and makeup products. The brand also ran co-op display ads with Walmart on sites such as yahoo.com using "honor your natural beauty" messaging, and was part of a collection of personal care brands "made for unique hair & skin" that Unilever grouped in a dedicated walmart.com showcase.
For its part, Walmart tied in to Black History Month by highlighting items that celebrate Black culture and products from Black-owned businesses, such as The Lip Bar and Joe’s Fish Fry, on a dedicated showcase within its website. Social media activity, radio spots and display ads supported, including a home page carousel ad spotted on Feb. 2.
The retailer last summer committed $100 million over five years to address systemic racism in society by creating a Center for Racial Equity, and last month distributed $14.3 million of that in grants to 16 different nonprofit organizations that are tackling racial inequities. The mission of the center is to complement and extend the societal impact of Walmart business initiatives to advance racial equity in the national’s financial, health, criminal justice and education systems.