Hair brands must capture the ingredient-educated consumer, optimize e-tailer collaborations, and create unique influencer strategies to succeed in the growing digital landscape. The top ten brands in Gartner L2’s Digital IQ Index: Hair Care & Color optimize mobile brand sites, invest in SEM on must-win nonbranded terms and successfully navigate retail partnerships to secure visibility and ownership.
1. L’Oréal Paris
Digital IQ: 161
L’Oréal Paris leads the Index in organic search visibility against nonbranded hair color terms. The brand showcases advanced product pages with before and after imagery, ingredient information and links to its blog, which is well-optimized for nonbranded search. Additionally, L’Oréal Paris is a high performer on its brand-owned social channels—Facebook, Youtube and Instagram, which show year-over-year followership growth and high engagement rates per post.
Digital IQ: 149
A consistently strong performance on mobile and desktop search against hair color terms helps Garnier earn the second spot in the Index. The brand deploys outsize investment in Amazon Advertising against nonbranded hair color terms and boasts high discoverability on Walmart and Target. Garnier also leads in performance on both owned and earned YouTube, receiving the highest share of video views and a top twenty share of vlogger mentions.
Digital IQ: 145
Redken is highly discoverable within the care category on Ulta’s ecosystem and has one of the highest email open rates out of its peers. The brand also holds the highest share of mentions and interactions from Instagram influencers and earns consistently high engagement.
Digital IQ: 140
SheaMoisture boasts strong ownership and visibility within the hair treatment category on Walmart and Target. In addition, the label is one of the most-mentioned brands on YouTube, resulting in a high volume of referral traffic from YouTube to its site.
Digital IQ: 138
Matrix performs well on retail partners, seeing high paid search visibility on new distribution partner Amazon and boasts the highest discoverability for care brands on Salon Centric. The brand also consistently deploys mobile-ready email content.
Digital IQ: 136
For the first time, OGX establishes its place in the top ten. The brand outperforms its peers in overall digital marketing performance, led by strong SEM and SEO against hair care terms. OGX is also an Index leader in discoverability on Amazon and Walmart.
7. Paul Mitchell
Digital IQ: 135
Paul Mitchell takes seventh place, excelling through SEO and SEM against both branded and nonbranded search terms. The brand also supports sophisticated content features on its desktop and mobile sites, such as auto-play video.
Digital IQ: 134
Neutrogena made its appearance in the top ten this year thanks to its strong digital marketing efforts. The brand soars past competitors in desktop and mobile traffic as well as through SEM against hair care terms.
Digital IQ: 133
Aveda has been quick to invest in more visual Google ad formats like Showcase ads–one of only a few direct-to-consumer brands doing so. The label also secures one of the top positions on social, boasting high visibility on YouTube and a high share of influencer mentions on Instagram.
10. Madison Reed
Digital IQ: 133
Madison Reed receives high scores for its email marketing, SEO, and SEM efforts. The brand successfully taps into organic search on Pinterest and seeds a high share of referral traffic from the platform to its brand site.