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targetTarget is expecting to roll out its Beauty Concierge program to over 200 stores this summer.  It was recently introduced in Chicago and Los Angeles and will be launched soon in the Twin Cities, Baltimore, Washington D.C. and northern Virginia.  Each of the participating stores will have a Target Beauty Concierge.  This person will be a highly-trained, beauty enthusiast.  Customers can ask the Beauty Concierge questions about cosmetics, hair care, and skin care.  The Concierges will be equipped with iPads to look up product merchandise.  The Beauty Concierges will be trained to provide Target guests with “personalized, detailed, and unbiased” information about beauty and personal care products.  The concierges will not be working on commission.

Target believes that some customers feel overwhelmed and daunted when entering the health and beauty care section.  The Beauty Concierge program will help alleviate customer anxiety and provide friendly, knowledgeable, and personalized information for customers.

Some customers don’t think that a beauty consultant is necessary for Target’s price range and are wondering why Target is investing so heavily in this program.

Discussion Questions:

1. What type of services would you expect from a beauty consultant at Target?

2. Do you believe the beauty consultants at Target will be similar to those at department stores like Macy’s?

3. From a strategy perspective, do you believe beauty consultants make sense for Target?


SOURCE: Tom Ryan, Retail Wire, June 3, 2013