You are currently browsing the monthly archive for August 2009.

New York-based Tonka Beans ( is changing the way women look at money matters by creating informational videos that demystify and simplify the needlessly complicated world of personal money management. Tonka Beans’ entertaining segments provide insight into women’s views on money issues. Through interviews and profiles, the videos expose women’s money-related concerns while also educating and putting into practice sound financial planning principles. The videos simplify money matters and make them relevant to the needs of women. They are available from the company’s website and through various Internet video websites. Tonka Beans’ website is also a social networking platform where women can share their personal money-related stories and get advice and opinions from registered “Opinion Makers” within a safe, women-focused environment. Zina Spezakis, CEO of Tonka Beans says that: “Statistics show that about 1 in 10 women actively invests. That critical fact combined with current social trends like high divorce rates becomes alarming when you think about how many women will retire 30 years from now. . .” Adds Spezakis: “More than ever, it’s critical that women buy into the fact that they need to become more savvy with their money. The average woman finds investing information intimidating or uninteresting. That needs to change. Personal money-management information, like any good product, has to be relevant to its audience. It’s up to us finance insiders to make that information accessible and relevant to women.” Mrs. Spezakis concludes: “We (women) have come a long way in terms of salary equity. Now that we make it, we have to learn to manage it. . .” Tonka Beans is a New York-based online creator, aggregator and distributor of investing information for women ages 23-45.


Further expanding on its celebrity style coverage online, recently launched a new interactive tool, where users can upload photos of themselves and try out new celebrity looks in hair and makeup. This technology is the first of its kind within the Hispanic market, where users are experimenting with looks designed for Hispanic women — complete with complimenting hair, skin and eye colors. Cambia Tu Look is a free, fun, easy way to try on hundreds of the hottest celebrity hairdos, as well as lip, skin and eye colors – all in an instant. For the ultimate transformations, users can try on the complete hair-and-makeup looks of their favorite American and Latino stars such as Angelina Jolie, Jennifer Lopez, Thalia, Katie Holmes and Maite Peroni, and learn how to the exact glamorous red-carpet looks. Users can try out over 100 celebrity hairstyles and experiment with hair, lip and eye colors from more than 100 popular brands, then purchase these favorite beauty items online by clicking through to a retailer.  “ is the ultimate Hispanic website for the hottest trends in celebrity fashion and beauty,” says Fran Hauser, president, Digital, Time Inc. Style and Entertainment Group. “With Cambia Tu Look we are providing an exciting, engaging experience for women where they can sample with new looks and shop for their favorite beauty brands.”

“Beauty and style are defining characteristics for Latinas,” says Lucia Ballas-Traynor, publisher, People en Espanol. “They have been following the hottest trends of today’s stars but now they can be inspired by creating their own unique looks and styles that differentiate them from mainstream.”

At the forefront of solutions for hormonally aging skin, Striking™ Skin Care with SmartPeptides™ has launched a new e-commerce boutique,, blending the best of beauty, cosmeceuticals and social community.  The new website is designed so every woman can access the dermo-basics: science made simple, concise information on the advanced ingredients, and easy access to an ongoing skin care dialogue.  The vibrant and spa-like website provides an easy to navigate online environment where visitors can learn more about the products, ingredients, and brand at the click of a button.  The site includes enhanced features such as an ongoing video series as well as an engaging social community supported by Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, the Striking Blog and the Simply Striking™ monthly newsletter. “We want the Striking website and social community to be an informative and entertaining resource for the latest in skin health and beauty trends,” said Robin Carmichael, vice president of marketing & business development. “The web boutique offers the high performance and elegant Striking Skin Care line formulated with SmartPeptide technology that specifically targets the needs of skin ravaged by transitioning hormones. Striking picks up where a woman’s previous basic skin care starts to wear down in performance and reinvents new vitality and radiance.”  

bebe stores, inc. has launched its highly anticipated new fragrance in all U.S. bebe stores. Thanks to a partnership with Milwaukee-based Prolitec, the sensuous new “signature” scent now wafts through select areas of bebe’s stores via the Air/Q™ Adjustable Room Air Freshener™ — a miniaturized and fully programmable version of Prolitec’s ambient-scenting technology, which is already in use at many of the world’s finest hotels, resorts and spas. “Rather than scenting the entire store, bebe is using Air/Q to scent specific in-store areas, such as those around the luxurious visual displays that introduce the new fragrance,” explained Roger Bensinger, Prolitec’s Executive Vice President of Marketing and Business Development. “This allows bebe to marry its visual marketing efforts with the olfactory experience of the fragrance itself — a very powerful combination.”

“With Prolitec’s innovative scenting machines strategically placed in our stores, clients will experience an immediate emotional connection to the scent,” commented Manny Mashouf, Chairman & CEO, bebe stores, inc. “This is a terrific way to reveal our new undeniably feminine fragrance in a subtle yet sensual manner and, based on initial results, we are encouraged by the overwhelming response.” The retailer licensed the new fragrance through France’s Inter Parfums, Inc., which collaborates with noted designers such as Francis Kurkdjian to manufacture and distribute prestige perfumes and cosmetics for the likes of Burberry, Paul Smith, S.T. Dupont and Van Cleef & Arpels. Inter Parfums chose the bebe fragrance for its first-ever foray into automated ambient sampling, said Andy Clarke, President of Inter Parfums USA LLC, Specialty Retail Division. “Ambient scenting is one of the hottest trends in retail, and many companies are keenly interested in new approaches to ambient sampling that are more efficient than, say, paying a person to spray a new perfume on shoppers’ wrists as they walk in the store,” he noted. “At the same time, many retailers do not want any remnant of an in-store fragrance to last on the ready-to-wear clothing they sell. These stores need to be able to control the intensity and range of the automated ambient sampling technology they use to an extraordinary degree. This is precisely what Prolitec’s Air/Q system offers.”

Aiming to change how women discover, try and even buy beauty products, Daily Makeover, a leader in virtual reality try-on technology, recently introduced the next generation of its virtual makeover application, Makeover Studio. Featuring the industry’s most advanced rendering capabilities, Makeover Studio offers women a new online connection with beauty products and gives beauty brands a new channel to increase consumer awareness and product trial, as well as drive e-commerce transactions. That same compelling experience is also driving online media publishers to deploy Makeover Studio as a tool to engage visitors, incorporate innovative contextual advertising units and build customer loyalty. Makeover Studio is currently icensed to more than 60 major beauty brands and web media publishers, and is featured on Daily Makeover’s flagship editorial website “Advances in virtual reality are used very effectively in many industries and now we are bringing the same kind of advanced virtual makeover technology to the vast and lucrative female audiences buying beauty, fashion and health products,” says Jeannette McClennan, CEO and president, Daily Makeover. “Women love to try on products and by creating the capability to do that effectively online, we are not only changing how women discover, try and buy these products, but how companies develop and market them and how web properties can use that kind of engagement to drive new marketing programs.”

This fall American coffee cup tippers will be breaking new “grounds” by changing their normal morning show routine–and checking out the newly revamped The Balancing Act. Women who want a fast-paced half-hour of news you can use, and endless entertainment will be looking to The Balancing Act on Lifetime Television for their daily dose of trends and tips–featuring advice from the country’s leading experts. Kay Renz Public Relations will be guiding the producers on exciting ways to garner the attention of women across the country as the show kicks off the new season on August 24th with two engaging new hosts, Beth Troutman and Kristi Villa, and a sleek new set.  “Women are looking for a new show to wake up with, and The Balancing Act really speaks to their issues,” says Kay Renz. “Each show offers segments women will enjoy and learn from–it’s real advice that will help them and their families every day! And the new hosts will become every woman’s new best friends! They are bright, funny, energetic and they get it! They’re women. They know the struggle it is to keep the balance between all of a woman’s multiple roles.”  Some of the hot topics the show will be addressing include the possible dangers of sugar substitutes, celebrity style tips with JoJo Cohen, back-to-school tips and tricks, healthy snack ideas, and an October salute to cancer survivors.

Looking for some inspiration?  Check out Mary Lou Quinlan’s blog on regarding her “summer with breast cancer.”  Such an uplifting story to share.

Believing sensitive skin care has no boundaries, Kimberly-Clark Corporation is introducing improved Cottonelle Aloe & E toilet paper and new Cottonelle SoothingClean flushable moist wipes. These extra gentle products offer a combined solution that help make it easy for consumers to care for sensitive skin in their most sensitive spots. “Sensitive skin is a big concern for many consumers. Some 67 percent of women claim to have sensitive skin, and 40 percent of adult consumers report ‘minor skin irritation down there’,” said Courtney De Salvatore, brand manager. “Cottonelle Aloe & E toilet paper and Cottonelle SoothingClean flushable moist wipes help make caring for sensitive skin on bottoms an easy part of users’ daily personal care routine.” To help educate consumers about sensitive skin care – in a gentle, cheeky way – the Cottonelle brand has established the Cottonelle Institute of Sensitive Skincare online at The informational website, hosted by the iconic Cottonelle puppy, helps visitors discover their individual sensitive skin types – and how to care for them – through interactive labs, tips and activities.

Gaiam, Inc., a distributor of lifestyle media and fitness accessories, recently announced that it will produce Losing It and Keeping Fit, a fitness DVD featuring Valerie Bertinelli and her personal trainer, Christopher Lane. Complementing her successful weight loss with Jenny Craig, Valerie achieved her newly toned and fit body working out with Christopher in her living room. She will share that experience and the exercise routine in her DVD. “We have all been so inspired by Valerie’s success with the Jenny Craig weight loss plan and now it’s exciting to be able to share the fitness regimen that has contributed to her total transformation,” said William Sondheim, president of entertainment and worldwide distribution for Gaiam. “Valerie shows us how vital proper diet and a personal exercise plan are to overall well-being.” The DVD will launch on November 3, 2009. Additionally, Gaiam will release a special Jenny Craig version of the DVD exclusively through Jenny Craig weight loss centers, on October 6, 2009. This Jenny Craig version will feature exclusive bonus footage. “Having the blessing of Jenny Craig on the DVD is an added boon for us and added value for the consumer,” said Sondheim. The Jenny Craig logo will appear on the packaging of the first video and a promotional coupon for a 30-Day Free Trial will be included inside the DVD for general retail release.

Dennis Syracuse, formerly of Sony Retail and a past speaker at M2W®-The Marketing To Women Conference, has been appointed Senior Vice President of Marketing Analytics for Datran Media, a digital marketing technology company. In this role, Syracuse will establish a Marketing Analytics Consulting Practice which will provide professional consulting services to agencies. The new Practice will broaden Datran Media’s brand advertising services to provide intelligent optimization capabilities for marketing campaigns across all digital channels.

Datran Media Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Patrick Vogt said, “We are very pleased to welcome Dennis Syracuse to Datran Media as our Senior Vice President of Marketing Analytics. Dennis is a consummate professional experienced in B2B and B2C marketing and sales, and I am confident he will provide excellent leadership for our new Marketing Analytics Practice. Dennis brings ideal experience to his position, and will add tremendous value as we continue to expand our intelligent marketing services for our blue chip customer base. I look forward to working with him and consider this a huge win for Datran Media and our customers.” Syracuse stated, “I am excited and honored to join Datran Media as they expand their roster of digital marketing services. I look forward to building upon the company’s momentum in the marketplace, and redoubling our efforts to broaden Datran’s first class business intelligence products to help marketers improve their ROI through digital channels. This company has set a course to be an outstanding partner to brands and marketers, and I am pleased to join this effort.”

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