The US beauty brand tested a variety of ad creative in an awareness campaign for a new haircare product line, and saw an 11-point lift in ad recall when using product-focused messaging plus trusted influencers.

Personal care products brand

Suave Beauty offers a wide range of personal care products, from shampoos and conditioners to lotions, body washes and deodorants. From its first hair tonic in the 1930s to its new hair and body formulas made with select natural ingredients, the brand strives to deliver value-priced products for women, men and kids that work as well as high-end premium brands.


lift in ad recall


lift in purchase intent

Suave for Natural Hair was one of the top innovations for Unilever hair last year, beating the set business metrics by 100%, and is poised to become a fundamental growth lever for Suave. It has recorded one of the highest engagements for the brand in years, with interactions coming from grass roots within the community. Facebook and Instagram helped us define a new go-to-market strategy.
Reach the multicultural hair community

Suave Beauty wanted to build relevance with the multicultural hair community through a new product sub-line for natural hair. The brand wanted to test a variety of ad creative to understand what works best to reach multicultural haircare shoppers, boost awareness and increase sales.

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Authentic and credible

Through marketing research and insights, Suave learned that multicultural hair brands tend to cost more compared general market hair brands. When creating its Suave for Natural Hair product line, the brand knew authenticity was key to get people on board. So, it established The Natural Hair Trust―a brain trust of 5,000 African American women with diverse natural hair types and styles―who served as sounding boards and helped test the products in real-life conditions.

Prior to product launch, Suave Beauty tasked its agency Virtue and Facebook Creative Shop with building different ad creative that would credibly and authentically resonate with the intended audience. The teams brainstormed concepts and, to understand what would bring the best results, ran a three-cell campaign that tested using:

  1. a well-known African American beauty influencer

  2. Suave-branded product content only

  3. a combination of beauty influencer and branded content

The third cell, combining the influencer content with the product-focused messaging—photos and videos showcasing the Natural Hair product line—performed best.

All ads included a “Shop Now” or a “Learn More” button that linked to the Suave for Natural Hair product page on its webpage. Suave Beauty showed the ads to African American women aged 18–49, and chose to deliver the ads in Facebook News Feed, Instagram feed and Instagram Stories.

Suave Beauty determined the results of its February 18–August 31, 2019 campaign using a Facebook brand lift study, which showed that including credible, relatable and inspirational influencers along with branded product content added significant incremental impact:

  • 11-point lift in ad recall

  • 6-point lift in purchase intent

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