Pond’s wants to be more than your grandmother’s old faithful. The classic brand, known for its iconic cold cream, just launched its own Skin Advisor Live bot, or SAL, which helps people pick out the best products for their skin problems via Facebook Messenger across Argentina, Colombia, United Arab Emirates, and South Africa. As both personal care and beauty sectors continue to intensify, here’s how the feature might help keep Pond’s afloat.
Upon downloading the app, users are treated to SAL’s cheery voice and an invitation to snap a selfie so the bot can get a better sense of their skin. From there, SAL shows users their personalized routine with tips from the Pond’s Institute and beauty experts, and lets them know that she’ll be tracking their daily activity and environment to provide more informed advice over time.
Given the brand’s skincare status, putting effort into becoming an authority figure via an app is a smooth move. But it’s clear that Ponds could use a boost—the brand was bunked 31 spots in Gartner L2’s US digital ranking and 19 spots in its China one. Pairing this know-how with a familiar vessel of communication, like Facebook, where it’s parent company Unilever, already thrives, could give Pond’s the digital upgrade it needs.
Time will tell if SAL can actually function as the skincare expert she aims to be, but one thing is clear: adding a new app to an old name could be exactly what’s needed for a brighter brand future.