Monthly Subscription Services…What’s in the box?

30 Jan

Product sampling is not new to marketers however a  new form of product sampling is cropping up all over the place. The most notable and potential pioneer is Birchbox.

Birchbox

 

 

 

 

 

 

Birchbox sends 5-6 deluxe samples to customers for a monthly subscription of $10, members also receive points for buying any of the full size products from the samples sent. Each point counts as a $1 toward buying your next product through the service. Another perk of the serivice is personalization, after completing a survey the company will be able to send items catered to your specific tastes in beauty products.

 After testing the service for 3 months, I debated if the samples were actually worth $10/month. Ultimately, I decided to stop the service because I ended up with a drawer full of samples that I didn’t really use. Some reviewers noted the samples were better when the company first started, however, others continue to rave about their samples and service.

I decided to do research on their business plan and found a new crop of similar services. A nice list has been compiled by this blogger http://forum.purseblog.com/the-beauty-bar/list-of-beauty-subscription-services-724498.html .

It seems that international demand for this type of service has increased dramatically as well since international shipping can be tricky. Similar companies have popped up in the UK, Canada, Ireland, Germany, France, Australia, and South Africa among others.

One service that stands out is the Test Tube box by New Beauty which sends boxes on a quarterly bases at $29.95/box and includes a magazine, the yearly cost is slightly cheaper than similar services $10 or more per month.

Outside of the beauty realm there are also monthly subscription services for eco-friendly products, products for dogs, men, and handmade products.

Product sampling is a great way for new and existing products to gain word of mouth attention. In the future I believe we will continue to see crops of new subscription services competing against one another for the spotlight. Companies that partner with the appropriate service should see a nice increase in sales and generate a higher ROI 🙂

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