L’Oréal Professional Products Division has bolstered its presence through digital and education following the appointment of Sylvia Stewart as Head of Education and Digital, writes Cameron Pine.

L’Oréal Professional Products Division General Manager David Higgins says newly created role demonstrates PPD’s commitment to positioning digital as a true partnership differentiator, in a highly competitive environment.

“As our industry continues to accelerate digitally, it’s our role as the industry leader to be a key driver of this transformation. Having a dedicated resource in Sylvia, to steer this for the division ensures that the latest digital touchpoints and technologies relevant to new and emerging trends in consumer interactions are maximised to inspire all stakeholders,” David said.

Sylvia’s new role will involve a close working relationship within each of the PPD brands – L’Oréal Professionnel, Redken, Kérastase, Pureology, Shue Uemura, Matrix and Biolage – to ensure consistency and a strong digital footprint across education at a time when salons are needing to innovate in all aspects of digital and education.

“This recent health situation has not only demonstrated a need for digital acceleration and upskilling of salons, but it’s also shown that there is an appetite for education in various digital formats,” said Sylvia.

We take some time with Sylvia to discover more about this exciting new role.

Will each PPD brand receive a customized digital strategy focus across both brand and education or is it a more over-arching approach across the entire division?

Strategic drivers across the brands are largely consistent. However to respect the uniqueness that comes with each brand identity, the levers to push and pull to achieve objectives, are bespoke to each.  One thing for sure that is consistent across all brands within the division, is that ‘where education goes, business grows’.

How will this digital and education strategy improve the brand’s marketing footprint?

Digital and education have emerged as the greatest forces behind engagement, something that is especially critical to loyalty these days. We believe in the power of the ‘golden square’, which represents a mutually inclusive relationship between commercial, education, marketing and digital.

We will see more online content leveraged across the trade?

Absolutely! Content is king at the moment and will remain so in this age of connectedness. More than ever, we have fuelled the appetites of virtual learners in new ways, with new enthusiasm which we will continue to build and execute in innovative and exciting ways. Stay tuned!


How will PPD link online consumer campaigns with trade and education?

Providing 360 degree integrated campaigns is not new to us and we know all stakeholders require integration throughout the process of engaging with consumers to be successful.  We truly believe that through the principles of ‘Salon Emotion’, the consumer journey is significantly enhanced when our trade business partners are expertly educated.

How will PPD promote the ‘digital academy’ to the trade?

The Digital Academy program is an opportunity for our salon business partners to improve their visibility, attractiveness and desirability to consumers. Our field team are instrumental in the promotion of this new initiative and are fully trained to build this digital transformation journey for the unique needs of each of our salon business partners. The Digital Academy begins with a digital footprint analysis, which determines participation in several facilitator-led online modules.

How have you seen the interaction with your salon partner’s change since COVID-19 and how will we benefit from some of these changes digitally? 

Analysis of their digital footprint was only one aspect.  Our teams in headquarters and in the field worked tirelessly to provide a suite of new everyday-digital and social tools to set help salons communicate effectively to the myriad of changing consumer emotions and behaviours that emerged. The initiative of the e-commerce portal Support your Salon, was a solution created as a response to the COVID-19 situation, but its ongoing benefits sees consumers able to purchase home care while supporting their favourite salon, on-demand and well beyond the pandemic.

What excites you the most about education?

Learning in any aspect of life, is truly an awakening experience. Those responsible for the education of others will bring prosperity and joy to everyone they touch. This ability gives me great satisfaction.