An Ode to Nivea’s Success: Its Marketing Strategy Case Study

Updated on: May 11, 2024
Marketing Strategy of Nivea - A Case Study
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My name is Aditya Shastri and I have written this case study with the help of my students from IIDE's online digital marketing courses in India.

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Nivea is a decade-old beauty routine and skin support brand headquartered in Hamburg, Germany. After many years of creation, the brand is spread over 173 countries around the world, with 50 products. Subsequently, it established its division in India, in 2005.

This case study includes Nivea marketing strategy, its marketing mix, digital presence, social media marketing, and its campaigns. So before we begin studying Nivea marketing strategy, let’s begin by understanding the company.

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About Nivea

Marketing Strategy of Nivea - A Case Study - About

 

Nivea is a German personal care brand that specializes in body care. The brand first began its cream-based production in 1911.

Initially, it developed its stable oil-and-water skin cream, boomed as a brand with numerous products, and now is a household name globally.

Primarily, Nivea catered to women and marketed products that grabbed women’s attention. Later, the brand repositioned itself and launched Nivea Men, and with its brilliant campaigns and meticulous marketing strategy the brand came out with flying colours.

Despite economic hardships and a competitive environment the brand continued to grow and initiated umbrella brands under Nivea, to name a few Nivea family, Nivea Men, and Nivea bath care.

It includes categories like body care, face care, sun care, Nivea men and many more in this category. 

In recent years, Nivea has boarded various famous individuals for its campaigns on traditional media and digital media.

What’s new with Nivea

Check out some current news about Nivea:

  • Nivea India’s 3rd edition of Nivea Soft Fresh Batch aims to help Gen Z become content creators.
  • Nivea India strengthens the leadership team with new appointments across the marketing and sales divisions.
  • Nivea adds recycled coffee grounds to the latest face cream.

Target Audience of Nivea

Check out the buyer persona below to understand the target audience of Nivea:

Buyer’s Persona

Name:

Florina

Place:

Delhi

Age:

25 years

Profession:

Marketing Consultant

Motivation

  • maintaining healthy, youthful skin.
  • confidence and well-being
  • believes skincare boosts her confidence

Interest & Hobbies

  • Fitness maintaining
  • Love Travel
  • Reading beauty blogs
  • Daily skincare routine

Pain Points

  • Skin concerns like dryness, breakouts, and signs of ageing.
  • Struggles to find effective and affordable skincare products.
  • Limited time for extensive skincare routines.

Social Media Presence

  • Instagram
  • pinterest
  • Facebook

Now that we have an understanding of the company, let’s understand Nivea’s marketing mix.

Nivea Marketing Strategy: Marketing Mix of Nivea

A marketing mix is a combination of various strategies that an organization uses to advance its interest in its image or product offerings. The marketing mix includes the 4Ps – Product, Price, Place, and Promotion. Let’s examine the marketing mix of Nivea:

Product Strategy of Nivea

Marketing Strategy of Nivea - A Case Study - Marketing Mix - Product Strategy

Nivea’s product strategy centers on offering a diverse range of skincare solutions to meet various consumer needs. The brand continually innovates by developing new formulations and expanding its product lines, covering areas such as moisturizers, sun protection, anti-ageing, and sensitive skin care.

Nivea emphasizes quality, affordability, and effectiveness, striving to provide products that cater to a wide demographic. Furthermore, their commitment to sustainability is reflected in eco-friendly packaging and environmentally conscious practices, aligning with evolving consumer preferences for ethical and responsible skincare. Let’s dig a little deep to understand Nivea’s product mix in detail:

(a) Skincare products: Nivea’s cash cow segment includes its skincare products. Nivea’s skincare product includes moisturizers, day and night creams, serums, face washes, toners, and anti-aging products. Not just this, the brand takes extra care for skin types like sensitive, dry, or oily skins.

(b) Bodycare range: This section includes products like body lotions, body creams, in-shower body moisturizers, and hand creams. The brand markets its body care range by stating its deep nourishment and hydration formulation that suits every skin type easily. 

© Suncare range: With products like sunscreens with various SPF levels, after-sun lotions, and sunblock for kids, Nivea provides ultimate suncare solutions to its users. These products claim to shield your skin from harmful UV radiations and sunburns.

(d) Deodorants: Nivea offers a variety of deodorant products with different fragrances for both men and women. With different product formats like roll-ons, sticks, and sprays, these products minimize underarm and body odor and give a hint of freshness as and when needed.

(e) Men’s range: A specific segment targeted to only men, Nivea offers products like shaving creams, after-shave lotions, moisturizers, face washes, and deodorants that are designed keeping in mind the skin type and requirements of men. These products aim to cater to unique skin requirements and give a hint of freshness to men’s skin.

(f) Lip and haircare: Nivea’s offering include lip balms, lip butters, shampoos, conditioners, etc to cater to end-to-end needs of its users.

(g) Baby care products: Indian households love Nivea and to harness its potential, Nivea started a range of baby care products that includes baby lotions, baby shampoos, and baby washes. The brand uses special formulation here to keep the baby’s skin free from harmful chemicals and ensures that the products are gentle on their skin.

Price Strategy of Nivea

Pricing plays a very vital role in a company’s marketing mix. The cost of a product should be decided deliberately to have the required number of sales. The price of the products mainly depends upon the production costs. 

Nivea, with its highly intelligent market research teams, has worked towards developing its market share by practicing curvesome pricing strategies. The brand has kept its prices reasonable so it can attract a larger audience.

Nivea believes in a persistent pricing policy as it has focused on the working-class part of the population to cater to the most extreme consumers for its products. The brand has kept its costs sensible to take into account a larger crowd. 

Don’t all of us like products that are reasonable and give extreme benefits?

Let’s understand Nivea’s pricing strategy in detail:

(a) Value-based pricing: Nivea practices value-based pricing where they price their products based on the perception of its audience and the value it adds to their user’s life. As Nivea’s core focus is on maintaining the quality of its products, following value-based pricing helps the brand in maintaining the audience perception and effectiveness of the product among its users. 

(b) Competitive pricing: To be in the competition, Nivea generally adjusts its prices as per its competitors. Nivea ensures that its products are competitively priced especially for products like body lotions, creams, etc.

© Product line pricing: Nivea practices of setting different prices for its different product lines. The company keeps affordable prices for its daily use products and keeps slightly higher prices for its premium product range. This helps them in serving the audience better and maintaining a proper audience segmentation. 

(d) Promotional pricing: To boost short term sales and overall sales volume, Nivea generally uses discounts, coupon codes, offers and limited time deals to price its products.

(e) Psychological pricing: To boost impulsive buying, Nivea strategically price its products just below a round number, i.e., ₹12 instead of ₹15. This makes users think that they are getting products for a low price, thus boosting the sales for the company.

Place & Distribution Strategy of Nivea

Nivea employs an extensive distribution strategy to ensure wide availability. Its products are found in supermarkets, drugstores, and department stores, with a strong online presence through its website and third-party e-commerce platforms.

Nivea adapts its strategies for international markets, reaching consumers in various countries. The brand also utilizes travel retail and specialized beauty retailers, providing options for travelers and those seeking a tailored shopping experience. Additionally, subscription services offer convenience to loyal customers.

Promotion Strategy of Nivea

In addition to its presence in traditional media, digital mediums, and social media platforms, Nivea extends its promotion strategy further. They often run targeted advertising campaigns on these platforms, tailoring their messages to specific audience segments. Moreover, Nivea frequently collaborates with influencers and beauty experts across social media channels, tapping into the power of influencer marketing to amplify their reach.

By combining these approaches, the marketing strategy of Nivea ensures that its skincare products and messages resonate with a diverse and extensive audience, spanning different age groups and demographics, thereby effectively spreading their skincare communication to a larger and more engaged customer base.

Marketing Strategy of Nivea - A Case Study - Marketing Mix - Promotion Strategy

Nivea also incorporates the utilization of events, for example, product launches, direct mail, public relations, branding, and sales advancement. During the product launches, the brand onboards well-known celebrities and VIPs. 

Partnering the product with a big-name artist is the key to drawing young people to purchase the product. Nivea has roped in several celebrities as its brand ambassadors like Anushka Sharma, Arjun Rampal, Parineeti Chopra, Taapsee Pannu, etc. Also, the brand provides offers and discounts on various products.

Marketing Strategy of Nivea - A Case Study - Marketing Mix - Promotion Strategy

The whole idea of the marketing strategy of Nivea is significant for the success of the business. A good marketing plan coupled with suitable marketing strategies will ensure that it shall create products and services as per the needs and wants of our customers.

NIVEA India recently targeted Gen Z through social media campaigns such as the #TrustMyNIVEAFam Reel Challenge and the NIVEA Soft Fresh Batch 2022 influencer hunt. These campaigns directly reached out to Gen Z.

Gen Z has fully incorporated digital technology into their lives, so NIVEA India launched digital campaigns with a strong online presence. Both campaigns required participants to create content for the brand. The #TrustMyNIVEAFam Challenge asked users to create Instagram Reels, while the NIVEA Soft Fresh Batch campaign required participants to create videos on the short video app Moj.

Here’s a glimpse of the campaign –

Nivea's Marketing Strategy - campaign

Let’s look at the marketing strategy of Nivea.

Nivea Marketing Strategy: Segmentation, Targeting, Positioning

Segmentation: Since Nivea caters to almost every skincare needs, the brand has majorly segmented its target audience into Male, female in terms of gender and babies, GenZs and millennials in terms of age.

Targeting: Since Nivea wanted to mass market its products, the brand targets middle class and upper middle class people in the Indian market. Apart from this, Nivea has recently introduced its premium product line where the prices are a little high compared to its general products.

Positioning: The brand has always positioned itself as a natural skincare brand affordable to every section of the society. Apart from this, they’ve also positioned themselves as a brand that is gentle and free of harmful chemicals

 

Nivea Marketing Strategy:

Nivea has a wide range of products; it has segmented itself as a personal and skincare brand. Its target group is the middle-class catering to all age groups and genders. It has products for each age group at an affordable price. The main focus of the marketing strategy of Nivea is brand extension, to stay ahead of its competitors. 

They productively use both traditional media and digital media in their marketing. They advertise on television and in newspapers for their different products, as there are still consumers in India who are engaged with traditional media. 

Bollywood stars like Anushka Sharma, Taapsee Pannu, Parineeti Chopra, and Ranveer Singh have been associated with Nivea for advertising. In recent times they’ve extensively tried Influencer marketing on social media to attract more consumers with challenges, trends, etc.

Let us now look at the successful marketing campaigns of Nivea in the coming section.

Nivea Marketing Strategy: Marketing Campaigns of Nivea

The purpose of marketing campaigns is to promote its products through different mediums like television, radio, print, and online platforms to reach its clients, and consumers and give out its communication. Let’s dive into Nivea’s most effective advertising campaigns:

Just Like Maa – A Marketing Campaign of Nivea

Mother’s Day campaign #JustLikeMaa was to appreciate the love of the ones who didn’t give us birth but loved us just like our moms. This campaign was carried out on a digital platform, developed by DigitasLBi. 

The ad had 1.5M million views and comments that included ‘beautifully touched’, ‘emotional’, ‘ unconditional love defined in the purest form’, and many more. Actors like R Madhavan, Genelia D’souza Deshmukh, and Shilpa Shetty Kundra took to Twitter to express their feelings regarding the campaign.

End the Winter Odour – A Marketing Campaign of Nivea

The #EndWinterOdour again, created by DigitasLBi embraced some hilarious short films which highlighted the need to solve body odour during winters.

The key communication of the campaign was that people are unaware of the fact that people are not careful of body odours that may be caused due to extra layering of clothes during winter. 

This digital campaign was further prepared to educate consumers concerning the ‘winter odour’ experience.

Unlock Your Sparkle – A Marketing Campaign of Nivea

#UnlockYourSparkle featured the new face of Nivea – Parineeti Chopra, for the young girls to flaunt uniquely. The campaign revolved around the Nivea Original Lip Balm with 6 lively colours. Each lip care colour carries its own personality. The 6 different films responded to various personalities of their TG.

Milk Delight Facewash – A Marketing Campaign of Nivea

Nivea Milk Delights Face Wash was an interesting campaign featuring Taapsee Pannu. As the brand always gives what its consumer requires, it worked towards the solution for Indian skin requirements. The communication was simple natural ingredients are enough to make our skin look healthy, vibrant, and beautiful.

These were just a few campaigns that aired on both traditional and digital mediums to create huge brand awareness. 

In this fast-paced world and with everyone having a humongous presence on digital mediums, it becomes extremely important to have extremely active strategies for digital media. Let’s look at the digital strategy of Nivea that resulted in the success of the brand.

Nivea Marketing Strategy: Digital Marketing Efforts

Apart from actively branding its products on television, Nivea has a well-built social media presence with an incredible digital marketing strategy handled by Madison Media Omega. 

Let’s take a look at the digital marketing strategy followed by Nivea: 

  • It has 71.4K organic followers on Instagram, 23M followers and 6.3M followers on Nivea Men on Facebook, 25K followers on Twitter, 85K subscribers on YouTube, and 77K followers on LinkedIn

 

Marketing Strategy of Nivea - A Case Study - - Digital Marketing Strategy - Instagram

Instagram Handle of Nivea

 

Marketing Strategy of Nivea - A Case Study - Digital Marketing Strategy - Facebook

Facebook Handle of Nivea

 

Marketing Strategy of Nivea - A Case Study - Digital Marketing Strategy - Twitter

Twitter Handle of Nivea

  • The brand is quite active on Instagram with constant posting related to products, festivals, videos breaking myths, supporting causes, videos related to a skincare routine, and posts related to weather change
  • In today’s time, Online Reputation Management plays a huge role and the brand actively is in service for their consumer’s queries and complaints, both on Instagram and Facebook
  • Nivea has also benefited from Influencer Marketing which was its debut in the Tik Tok era of India. The #ShareTheCare challenge saw well-known TV/Film personalities and influencers like Genelia D’souza Deshmukh and Anita Hassanandani Reddy who were followed by various micro and macro influencers on social media
  • The brands also associated with influencers like Sameera Reddy and Karanveer Bohra’s twin babies Bella and Vienna for #HaveFunWithYourKids 
  • YouTube and Facebook are mostly used to update its consumers with new advertisements and launch of new products 
  • Looking at Twitter, it is still a little underdeveloped in comparison with other social media apps

The marketing strategy of Nivea needs to be always updated to beat the competition. Here are the top competitors of Nivea:

Top 5 competitors of Nivea

1. Olay (Procter & Gamble): Olay has gained recognition for its extensive lineup of skincare items, encompassing anti-ageing creams and moisturizers, and it directly rivals Nivea in the skincare industry.

2. Neutrogena: Neutrogena provides a diverse range of skincare and sunblock products, with a focus on solutions recommended by dermatologists. They are a formidable player in the skincare industry.

3. L’Oréal: The skincare labels under L’Oréal, including Garnier and L’Oréal Paris, present a wide array of skincare and cosmetic items, engaging in global competition with Nivea.

4. Cetaphil (Galderma): Cetaphil specializes in creating skincare products that are gentle and recommended by dermatologists, making them an ideal choice for sensitive skin. It directly competes with Nivea, with a specific emphasis on the sensitive skincare sector.

5. Avon: Avon has built its reputation on a wide range of beauty and skincare products and is a competitor of Nivea in both the cosmetics and skincare sectors.

Before we conclude the study on the marketing strategy of Nivea. Let us see an example of a campaign of Nivea that faced backlash.

Example of a Failed Campaign Or Backlash from Viewers

‘White is Purity’ ad campaign

Titled “White is Purity,” the recent advertising campaign was centred around promoting Nivea’s latest women’s deodorant, with a specific focus on the Middle Eastern market. On social media, Nivea highlighted the deodorant’s ability to “maintain cleanliness and brightness” with the hashtag #Invisible. The slogan, ‘White is Purity,’ aimed to assure consumers that the new deodorant would not leave stains on white clothing.

Following the campaign’s launch on Facebook, it gained rapid and widespread attention on social media platforms. However, the advertisement sparked controversy, particularly due to its unintended association with white supremacy groups.

Nivea promptly removed the ad and issued a public apology to The Washington Post, stating, “The image used in the campaign was inappropriate and does not align with our company’s values. We sincerely apologise for this and have taken down the post. Nivea places great importance on diversity and inclusivity, fundamental principles that guide our product development. Discrimination in any form is unequivocally unacceptable to us, both as a company and as individuals.”

Here the case study on the marketing strategy of Nivea comes to an end. Let us go through the final points in the coming section.

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Conclusion

World’s No. 1 Skincare Brand’ as Nivea is called with its old-school ingredients, is a household name globally. It has already established its name in beauty and skin-care products and is widely recognized. 

It has systematically segmented its consumers, has positioned its products well, and has been marketing all its products in different ways. The value proposition that they’ve developed with their consumers has made them happy, satisfied, and loyal towards Nivea. 

The brand has meticulously strategized its expansion in umbrella products so that it can cater to customers of all ages and sectors. With the whole world being on digital media, the digital marketing strategy of Nivea can attract more customers by introducing more interactive campaigns and consumer engagement activities. 

Liked our work? Interested in learning further? Do check our website for more case studies like the marketing strategy of Nivea. Also, if you’re interested in Digital Marketing, you can check out our Free Digital Marketing Masterclass by Karan Shah.

Let us know your thoughts on this case study on the marketing strategy of Nivea in the comment section below. Thank you for reading, and if you liked our then do share this in your circle. 

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Aditya Shastri

Lead Trainer & Head of Learning & Development at IIDE

Leads the Learning & Development segment at IIDE. He is a Content Marketing Expert and has trained 6000+ students and working professionals on various topics of Digital Marketing. He has been a guest speaker at prominent colleges in India including IIMs......[Read full bio]

3 Comments

  1. Celiwe

    This was very helpful … thank you for publishing it

    Reply
  2. Shramika Chilka

    Wow, what an insightful case study on the marketing strategy of Nivea! Can’t wait to see what they come up with next!

    Reply
  3. Sahil Gupta

    Thorough analysis covering Nivea’s marketing mix and digital strategies. The examples of successful campaigns like #JustLikeMaa provide great insights. One question – how does Nivea tailor its product development and marketing specifically for the Indian market?

    Reply

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