Shopper Marketing - September 2017 - 28

PEOPLE TO WATCH

importance of working collaboratively with
diverse groups of individuals. Encouraged to
explore and understand many varying points
of view, the experience shaped her ability to
manage and advise 10 account buyers across
the country and better provide strategic category solutions.
Collaboration is a large part of her job today, and Rondon strives to align the L'Oreal
vision with every account - through strong
partnerships and an understanding of her account managers' and buyers' points of view.
Analytical assessment is also a big part, she
notes. Promotions, market share and shopper
insights all drive her decisions and recommendations.
Recent work within the grocery sector
showed that shoppers continue to feel overwhelmed when having to choose many different categories and products in one trip.
Even more important for her team was the
finding that hair color is often viewed as a
commodity product. A recent challenge was
to shift consumers' perception to hair color
being a beauty product.
A reassessment of product shade assortment and placement - since hair color can be
intimidating with so many brands, products
and shades - helped make it easier for the
shopper to shop. Then, it was all about price
and getting it right. "We essentially took those
three pieces of the puzzle and changed it up
so they fit together in a new, more interesting
and strategic way for our grocery accounts."
The experience reinforced the importance of
creating tailored strategies for customers, says
Rondon, and category performance turned
28

y SHOPPER MARKETING SEPTEMBER 2017

around. "My buyer expressed a newfound
passion for the category and its beauty roots."
Consumer insights as they pertain to ecommerce and digital intrigues Rondon as
she looks ahead in her career. "Digital is a big
part of the future, especially in retail." Given
that most of her background has been with
brick-and-mortar retail, she says she's looking
forward to expanding her horizons.
For her, that includes experience overseas.
"I believe that to become a better leader, one
should experience a variety of cultures to gain
new perspectives on how our brands interact
with different types of consumers across borders." Teamwork is integral to her role today,
and she also sees herself seizing the opportunity to lead, mentor and guide others.
- Erika Flynn

Maria Rondon
COMPANY: L'Oreal USA
TITLE: Account Category Manager,
Consumer Products Division
AGE: 28
EDUCATION: Rutgers University
(bachelor's, marketing/Spanish
literature; master's, finance)



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Shopper Marketing - September 2017

Contents
Shopper Marketing - September 2017 - Intro
Shopper Marketing - September 2017 - 1
Shopper Marketing - September 2017 - 2
Shopper Marketing - September 2017 - 3
Shopper Marketing - September 2017 - Contents
Shopper Marketing - September 2017 - 5
Shopper Marketing - September 2017 - 6
Shopper Marketing - September 2017 - 7
Shopper Marketing - September 2017 - 8
Shopper Marketing - September 2017 - 9
Shopper Marketing - September 2017 - 10
Shopper Marketing - September 2017 - 11
Shopper Marketing - September 2017 - 12
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