Deepika Padukone’s 82°E aims to reduce skincare steps and deliver a holistic brand experience. Social Samosa dissects the brand’s social media handles to understand how they are disrupting the already populated industry.
In almost every media conference, if there's an actress sitting on the other side of the table, there is one question that pops up - 'What's your skincare routine?' Or the cheesy version, "What is the secret behind your glowing skin?" Apart from diet, gym and a huge team that is behind this skin, there are some cosmetic products that share credit.
Deepika Padukone, one of the richest female actors in the country, who often talks about getting the right amount of sleep, nutrition, hydration and exercise for good skin, answers this question by launching her own skincare brand 82°E (pronounced 82 East) with Co-founder Jigar Shah.
The idea was to help her fans and consumers enhance how their skin looks and feels.
Today, 82°E operates in a $6.53 billion skin care products category which is expected to grow annually by 6.25%. (CAGR 2022-2027). This rapid growth has caused a boost in the number of homegrown brands with over 80 brands operating in the D2C sector alone.
In conversation with Jigar Shah, Co-founder of 82°E, Social Samosa dissects 82°E’s marketing strategy to understand how the brand is standing out in this cluttered market.
A brand inspired by Deepika
Skincare as an industry saw a boost in India during and post-pandemic period. A big contributor to this growth was the K-beauty wave. According to a survey conducted in 2022, 53.7% of the respondents stated that K-beauty was popular in India.
However, the Bollywood star had always followed a simple and hassle-free self-care routine. A pattern that she saw lacking in the Indian market. This absence gave birth to the idea of 82°E – a name inspired by the longitudes of India.
With the launch of this brand, the makers wanted to give the audience a simple and easy self-care routine to follow, which didn’t include multiple steps, yet got the job done. Hence, the range of products on the brand’s shelf has a minimalist and simple look and core value to it. The products are a reflection of Deepika’s own routine that she has followed for years.
“When Jigar and I joined forces, our aim was to create a brand that is an extension of my personal and professional journey,” Deepika stated to the press.
This extension of her own personal style and touch is something that is visible in the brand’s marketing strategy as well.
Deepika, as a brand plays a crucial part in educating and informing the audience about the brand’s products. The brand leverages her own keen interest in skincare and her social media presence of 74.1 million followers to connect with consumers.
Deepika’s personal Instagram is used as a platform where she acts as the review point for her followers.
Shah says, “Deepika is a key factor in the brand’s marketing. The brand is built around her and whatever we do, we try to leverage her and her ability to educate the consumers in every aspect.”
To get the ball rolling in the initial months after the brand went on the shelves, Deepika invited influencers from the beauty and make-up community to launch the brand's new product. And for this, the brand joined hands with Meta to launch the product using the latter's Live feature. Both brands created a holistic and healing environment for the launch party which was in sync with the skincare brand's entire theme.
82°E’s Social Map
According to a survey on social media's impact on consumers' purchase decisions in India in March 2022, 76% of respondents bought skincare and makeup products because of social media influence.
Social media and influencer reach have changed the game for the industry as a whole and especially for D2C brands. For a young D2C brand like 82°E, social media stays at the core of the marketing strategy. Shah mentions that consumers spend a disproportionate time on social media platforms which increasingly affects their spending habits.
Today, for 82°E, social media has become the denominator in their marketing mix. Apart from leveraging Deepika’s stardom and brand value which stands at $82.9 million as of 2023, the brand’s social media play has 2 major patterns:
Shah mentions that 82°E played on the pain point of the consumer – a cluttered market with a lack of knowledge on the topic. They used this lack of education as the conversation starter for the brand and played on it.
Thus 82°E’s communication has focused on simplifying the process of skin care. Apart from using Instagram sliders as a way to educate their audience on the importance of skincare and the simplified steps, their website acts as a blog for the brand as well. With elaborate blog posts dedicated to basics like cleansing and sunscreen, the blog also includes how Clinical Testing vs Consumer Testing differ and what of the two matters.
The brand’s social media handles aim to act as a transparent guide to the brand’s products. These include frequent consumer reviews and some influencer integration.
Shah mentions that although the brand currently engages scarcely with Influencers, in the future they intend on increasing this and involve the creators in the behind-the-scenes of the products as well, which will further the brand’s transparency quotient.
The market for natural and organic skincare products has exceeded geographical boundaries and was expected to grow from almost USD 9.9 billion in 2021 to roughly 20.4 billion dollars by 2030.
The consumer’s want for these ingredients plays an important role in 82°E’s marketing. The brand uses Indian core ingredients like sugarcane, liquorice, and turmeric and combines them with global ingredients to set the brand’s earthy-toned colour palette.
Apart from ingredients playing an important role in the brand’s marketing, 82°E’s communication also revolves around promoting self-care and integrating their products into this conversation as well.
In India, DTC brands that have risen to dominate the landscape launched with an online e-commerce presence but very quickly developed a retail footprint too.
In 82°E’s case, apart from having a web of online channels, Deepika and the brand occasionally converse with the audience offline as well. Shah points out that the brand plans on increasing their offline presence and conducting more one-on-one conversations with the actor.
Recently, the brand raised $7.5 million in seed funding that would be distributed to build their team, scale up research and development (R&D) and launch new products.
A brand that plans on reducing the steps and simplifying the entire journey of skincare, is using their aesthetic colour palette and Deepika’s first-hand experience to communicate with the audience and deliver a holistic and soulful brand experience—changing the self-care market in the nation.