CINCINNATI: Procter & Gamble has begun rolling out a number of tour initiatives to support its My Black is Beautiful campaign targeting African-American women.
Scheduled to roll out in 2008 is the My Black is Beautiful Conversation Tour. The weekend-long tour visits select cities and is designed to engage women in developmental activities, as well as to offer beauty and lifestyle tips.
Additionally, elements of My Black is Beautiful will be included in the Pantene Total You Tour, which travels to four metro markets each year. P&G is adding a social-networking component to Myblackisbeautiful.com to allow for more female interaction.
Among the brands connected to the campaign are Pantene Pro-V Shine, Covergirl Queen Collection, Crest, and Always.
Eric Higgs, brand manager for the multicultural marketing group at P&G, said one of the initiative's primary goals is to start a national conversation among African-American women regarding issues that are relevant to them. It also hopes to encourage them to define their own beauty standard.
A survey P&G conducted in partnership with Essence in July found that 71% of black women feel they are portrayed worse in the media and pop culture than any other racial group.
P&G's initiatives also include a 12-page advertorial called the Personal Journal and Discussion Guide in the December issue of Essence. The spread includes letters from Najoh Tita-Reid, associate director of multicultural marketing at P&G, and Saundra Heath, VP at Lippe Taylor, the agency running the campaign for P&G. The advertorial includes a guide for starting a conversation group and questionnaires.
Maureen Lippe, president of Lippe Taylor, views this effort as more than just a campaign.
"This is a movement," she said. "And our biggest challenge is to keep this movement going and coming up with initiatives that will resonate within this community."
P&G launched the effort earlier this year after its research showed that African-American women were not only frequent beauty products users, but that they spent at least three times as much as the general female population.
"We want to build more credible relationships with the African-American women who use our products," Higgs explained.