L’Oréal turns up the heat

In this month’s Engage – a recurring feature examining campaigns that successfully take in multiple elements of airport marketing – Hannah Tan-Gillies explores the bold pan-airport campaign L’Oréal Travel Retail undertook for the launch of the YSL Libre fragrance

Last October, L’Oréal Travel Retail set multiple airports ablaze with a campaign that brought the fiery visuals of the YSL Libre fragrance campaign to high-profile locations in the Middle East, Americas and Asia Pacific regions.

The advertising, starring singer-songwriter Dua Lipa, was launched at DXB (Dubai International), JFK, Suvarnabhumi and Incheon International airports.

YSL Libre and Dubai Duty Free took over DXB with both an experiential pop-up and a high-visibility media campaign. The pop-up was located in Terminal 1 Concourse D, while the visuals were displayed on 355 screens across the airport. The stellar activation combined online and offline elements, along with the retailer’s first-ever pre-sampling operation.

“With L’Oréal Travel Retail as our number one perfumes & cosmetics partner, we aimed to strengthen our fragrance category by maximising the new YSL launch”
Dubai Duty Free Vice President of Purchasing, Saba Tahir

“A complete plan”: An eye-catching pop-up for the fragrance at DXB featured huge advertising visuals

The YSL Libre campaign featured plenty of the benchmarks that have come to define beauty animations in travel retail. The DXB pop-up included giant golden letters spelling out ‘LIBRE’ and a striking sculpture made from over 100 of the Libre fragrance bottles.

“With L’Oréal Travel Retail as our number one perfumes & cosmetics partner, we aimed to strengthen our fragrance category by maximising the new YSL launch,” explains Dubai Duty Free Vice President of Purchasing Saba Tahir.

“The Yves Saint Laurent pop-up in Concourse D is the illustration of a complete plan that includes several event spots, online and offline digital activations, our first-ever pre-sampling operation, and the presence of a regional beauty influencer at our airport.”

Across all regions, the campaign took in key airport locations, including this advertising at JFK

Across all regions, the campaign took in key airport locations, including this advertising at JFK

The immersive pop-up incorporated several phygital elements. The journey began with a photo booth, followed by the ‘Sounds of Freedom’ experience, which told the story of three key women behind the new YSL fragrance: Libre perfumer Anne Flipo, bottle designer Suzanne Dalton and global ambassador Dua Lipa.

The journey concluded in the customisation zone, where visitors could have Libre bottles engraved with their initials. Top regional KOL Rania Fawazz visited the animation site and shared the experience with her 700,000 Instagram followers.

Hotter than hell: Pop singer Dua Lipa is the face of the campaign

L’Oréal Travel Retail added an extra element by launching a complementary ‘esampling’ campaign to engage with travellers before they headed to the airport. For a limited time, customers could register online ahead of their journey and receive a free sample of Libre delivered straight to their homes.

According to Tahir, the animation was an excellent showcase for the retailer’s strong partnership with L’Oréal Group. “Our collaboration for [the] Libre launch is proof of how successful a 360-degree partnership between Dubai Duty Free and strong brands can be,” she says.

“With Libre, Yves Saint Laurent and Dubai Duty Free took the launch activation to the next level, offering millions of passengers an immersive beauty journey, including exclusive services and exceptional experiences around a one-of-a-kind scent.”

KOL effect: Rania Fawaz visited the animation site at DXB and shared the experience with her 700,000 Instagram followers

Beyond DXB, L’Oréal Travel Retail also rolled out the YSL Libre campaign in Americas travel retail across airports in Mexico City, Cancún, Buenos Aires and New York. A YSL Libre pop-up was located at Terminal 4 of New York John F. Kennedy International Airport (JFK), in addition to a YSL Libre outpost outside the security area of JFK Terminal 1. The activation was the first of its kind for the region and helped propel Libre to become the top-selling fragrance in JFK Terminal 4.

The eye-catching YSL Libre media campaign was also rolled out in Asia Pacific at Suvarnabhumi Airport in Thailand and Incheon International Airport in South Korea. The striking campaign visuals commanded prime real estate throughout both airports, and further highlighted the impressive reach of one of L’Oréal Travel Retail’s most ambitious campaigns of the year.

From the unmissable pop-up in DXB, the geo-targeted KOL campaigns, and an advertising campaign that crossed continents, the YSL Libre campaign certainly set travel retail ablaze.

The pop-ups around the world had many phygital elements including the Freedom Photobooth


Sight Lines

Issue 6 | February 2020

Sight Lines is published by The Moodie Davitt Report (Moodie International Ltd) five times a year.
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