Neutrogena opens its first brand studio to create original content

Dive Brief:

  • Johnson & Johnson’s skincare brand Neutrogena launched its first brand content studio to produce original programming that inspires consumers and educates them about taking better care of their skin, per details emailed to Marketing Dive. As part of the launch, Neutrogena Studios also released a trailer for its first documentary short titled “In the Sun,” which follows seven families and will be released on April 27 on video-on-demand platforms.
  • Kerry Washington, the actress and brand ambassador for Neutrogena, produced “In the Sun” to showcase the long-term effects of sun exposure on skin. The documentary includes expert advice from Dr. Shirley Chi, a dermatologist who seeks to educate people on “simple, but safe, ways to enjoy the beauty of sunshine,” per the film’s website.
  • Neutrogena Studios also introduced its First Frame program in a collaboration with Ghetto Film School, a nonprofit with locations in New York, Los Angeles and London. The program will enlist Generation Z filmmakers in Neutrogena’s effort to create short films that align with its brand mission.

Dive Insight:

Neutrogena’s launch of a content studio can help the brand create more in-depth programming that could distinguish it from rivals in the skincare category. With the media environment becoming more fragmented amid the introduction of video-on-demand services, including those like Netflix and Disney+ that don’t carry advertising, brands like Neutrogena need to develop ways to reach and engage consumers. Creating content that’s more seamlessly integrated with its messaging is a way to provide information that’s entertaining and useful to viewers while positioning Neutrogena as a brand that supports healthy skincare habits.

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With the upcoming release of “In the Sun,” Neutrogena aims to engage viewers with stories about people who spend a lot of time outdoors, while also providing tips from a dermatologist about reducing the risk of skin cancer. Skin cancer makes up about a third of cancer diagnoses worldwide, according to the World Health Organization, which also found skin cancer has become more prevalent since the early 1970s. In addition to supporting its brand messaging, Neutrogena also aims to help younger filmmakers in their creative efforts by partnering with the Ghetto Film School.

“We’re creating a stage for diverse creators to tell their stories,” Sebastian Garcia-Vinyard, the studio content director at Neutrogena Studios, said in a statement. “Through their authenticity, these stories elevate the meaning of skin care, empowering viewers with the information they need to take action in protecting and nurturing any and all types of skin.”

Neutrogena is the latest marketer to dive deeper into content production. Procter & Gamble’s SK-II skincare brand last month launched a film studio division and content hub to create original programming. SK-II Studio’s production slate includes eight original films that focus on social pressures affecting women today through film as part of its #ChangeDestiny campaign. Every time someone views one of the films, the brand also will donate to organizations that support women.

To urge more brands to create original content on its video platform, Roku last month similarly launched a content studio that offers an expanded range of ad formats and TV programming for marketers. The studio creates short-form TV programs, interactive video ads and other branded content on The Roku Channel, the company’s ad-based video-on-demand (AVOD) hub. Several people from the branded entertainment division of content studio Funny Or Die joined Roku as part an agreement between the companies.

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