Latana x Pantene logos with shampoo bottle (Thumbnail)
Brand Deep DivesJune 22, 2021

How Pantene’s Incredible Brand Awareness Drives Global Success

June 22, 2021
Cory Profile Picture
Cory Schröder
Senior Content Marketing Manager

What comes to mind when you hear the phrase: “Don’t hate me because I’m beautiful”?

Ads filled with gorgeous, statuesque women running their hands through luxurious, voluminous hair? The Pantene Pro-V formula? All of the above?

Pantene — one of the most well-recognized haircare brands in the world — released their “Don’t hate me because I’m beautiful” commercials in 1989. Starring then It-Girls Kelly Lebrock and Iman, these controversial ads were wildly successful and quickly became part of the cultural lexicon of the 1990s.

Through the ad’s popularity, Pantene was able to increase their brand awareness and make themselves even more of a household name — along with their 2-in-1 shampoo and conditioning formula, Pro-V.

By 1994, Pantene was the #1 global haircare brand, available in 55 countries, and achieving $1 billion in sales. By 1998, it was the leading haircare brand in 90 countries worldwide. And most recently, Pantene achieved a global brand value of $5.57 billion in 2020.

With big names like Selene Gomez and Giselle Bündchen as current brand ambassadors, Pantene has been working constantly to keep their brand awareness and consideration levels high.


But who is actually using Pantene these days? And which audiences are most aware of their products?

Using our advanced brand tracking software at Latana, we conducted a mobile-optimized brand survey to find out more about Pantene’s brand performance in 2021.

This article will take a deeper look at Pantene’s recent brand performance, as well as discuss possible new target audiences for Pantene Pro-V.

Latana’s Pantene Survey Results

Surveying 1000 respondents in the US with our brand tracking tool, we discovered that an incredible 91% of the general population is aware of the Pantene Pro-V brand.

However, when we look solely at women, that brand awareness level jumps to 94% — with more than 55% of female respondents showing brand loyalty.

When it comes to the “who” of brand awareness, Pantene’s strongest audience can be found among women aged 46-55. This group reports 96% brand awareness, with 57% of them having used Pantene Pro-V’s products in the last six months.

However, we found that although 98% of women aged 56-65 are aware of Pantene Pro-V, less than 50% have actually used the brand in the last six months.

Perhaps they need to consider more targeted advertising for this audience segmentation?

Which Audiences Should Pantene Focus on, And What Can You Learn From Them?

In 2020, Pantene Pro-V was used by over 23 million people in the US alone. As one of the world’s leading haircare brands, they need to be incredibly vigilant about maintaining their brand funnel performance — their awareness, consideration, preference, and usage levels.

To ensure their market dominance, they’ll need to keep an eye on the performance of big competitors like Suave, Tresemme, and L’Oréal — who aren’t that far behind Pantene Pro-V in terms of brand usage.

That being said, which audience should Pantene Pro-V focus on next to tighten their hold on the market?

Double Down On Success

Source: Pexels

Based on our mobile-optimized survey results, we found a much more niche audience for Pantene to focus their efforts on: people with an extensive hair washing routine.

Within this audience, 94% are aware of Pantene’s brand and 62% have used their products in the last six months — the best performance by far!

So why not double down on such a well-performing audience to see if they could increase their brand usage levels? They’ll need to be creative in the ways they find and then target this niche audience, but we believe it could be a great strategy going forward.

The Takeaway

Finding a strong niche audience isn’t always the easiest thing to do. It requires a good deal of market and consumer research, as well as a deep customer analysis.

But if you’re able to identify a niche audience with a strong brand funnel, double down on it. Make sure you’re reaching every member of this audience possible, as they’ll be more likely to become loyal customers.

When you’ve found something good, it’s best to stick with it.

Reach Out To A Weak Audience

Source: Pexels

As previously mentioned, Pantene Pro-V is struggling a bit with women aged 56-65 in terms of brand usage. This could be for a myriad of reasons, but perhaps Pantene’s recent advertising materials aren’t connecting with this audience the way they want them to?

When it comes to media — from TV to film to ads — representation matters. As Chief Marketing Officer at Nissan Allyson Witherspoon explains, representation in advertising is about more than just casting choices, it’s about:

“shifting the way we look at supporting our communications to these audiences. It’s about making sure our messages are authentic and relatable.”

Pantene tried this theory out by releasing ads that celebrated grey hair in older women back in 2019, with their “Power of Grey” campaign.

By encouraging women and men to embrace their grey hair instead of covering it up, Pantene took a stand against modern beauty norms. Their goal was to “play a role in normalising grey hair”, as everyone deserves to feel confident and celebrated.

They’ve also been good about including older women in their commercials for the launch of other Pantene Pro-V products, like their Hair Biology collection.

However, if Pantene really wants to connect with women aged 56-65, they need to do their research. Where is this target audience consuming media? What brand values are they looking for? What are their brand associations when they think about Pantene Pro-V?

All of these questions and more can be answered via the use of brand monitoring.

Once they have the data they need, Pantene can more easily understand how to structure their brand messaging, advertising visuals, and brand voice to better speak to this struggling audience.

The Takeaway

When you use advanced brand tracking software to analyze your strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities for growth, you will find some audiences that are weaker than others.

However, just because an audience isn’t performing well at the moment doesn’t mean they don’t hold a great deal of potential.

Having an audience that reports high brand awareness but lower brand preference and usage just means you have to work harder to speak to this audience.

Using brand tracking software allows you to explore the consumers’ brand associations, engagement, and purchase behavior — all things that will help you craft better brand messaging.

Final Thoughts

Pantene has been wildly successful over the past 80 years, becoming a globally recognized leader in haircare.

Placing greater emphasis on sustainability and inclusivity, Pantene has been evolving with the times — which is a big driver to their continued success.

Based on our research, we can see that their brand funnel levels are already impressive. But even for a brand as big as Pantene, there’s always room for improvement and growth.

We’re excited to see what their next big brand campaign will look like!

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