Dollar Shave Club, a start up that provides customers with a monthly subscription service to razors, shook up the shaving world on March 5th, 2012 when it declared via YouTube video that it was selling razors for $1/month.
Gillette was not the only one watching in amazement as comedic co-founder, Michael Dubin parodied his way through the spot–so were advertisers and marketers. For $4,5oo, Dubin and Mark Levine were able to gather millions of views on YouTube. They now have over 5,000 subscribers to this monthly service.
There are three tiers to the Dollar Shave Club subscription services based on razor quality. The first level, “The Humble Twin” is the one Dubin talks about in his video. At $1/month, the subscription does make it less expensive for consumers who are used to Gillette razors. However, their other levels “The 4x” and “The Executive”, which are more comparable in quality, are actually more expensive than Gillette refills. The value to the customer in the latter would be in not having to go to the store to buy razors.
Dubin says that Dollar Shave Club is able to create these shavings for consumers (couldn’t help myself) because of their lean operations, but I think it also has to do with changing customer behavior. From informal field research, I learned that if the facial hair is thick and shaving takes place every day, most men will change their razor blade every two to three weeks, with the last razor in the pack lasting longer than the rest.
Nonetheless, whatever they are doing is working. In concordance with another blog post I read earlier this week, “Now [really] is the Golden Era for Advertising“.