Guerrilla hair stylists pump up Osis

It's a tradition and often a nightmare for most female club-goers. Lock yourself in the bathroom for 30 minutes, beautify yourself with some glamorous make-up and glitter, do the hair, find the appropriate sexy outfit and hit the club. But this summer, clubbers in Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto are getting the chance to have some of that done for them.
At locations like Montreal's Club Laboom and Ottawa's China White, ladies' washrooms have been transformed into mini salons. The Osis Hair Troupe has set up shop to give some lucky clubbers a new hairdo.

It’s a tradition and often a nightmare for most female club-goers. Lock yourself in the bathroom for 30 minutes, beautify yourself with some glamorous make-up and glitter, do the hair, find the appropriate sexy outfit and hit the club. But this summer, clubbers in Montreal, Ottawa and Toronto are getting the chance to have some of that done for them.

At locations like Montreal’s Club Laboom and Ottawa’s China White, ladies’ washrooms have been transformed into mini salons. The Osis Hair Troupe has set up shop to give some lucky clubbers a new hairdo. The ladies walk in with one hairstyle and walk out with a new one.

The promotion, devised by Toronto’s Paradigm Events and co-ordinated by Toronto-based Cohn & Wolfe, is an awareness campaign for Mississauga-based Schwarzkopf Professional’s newest line of 17 styling products for women, called Osis, which launched at the beginning of March.

‘When you walk into a bar, you want to look your best, so this activity just seemed appropriate,’ says Tawnya Hallman, marketing co-ordinator for Schwarzkopf. ‘It touches a lot of the people we want to reach – the 19+ woman who is conscious of her appearance – and there are lineups every night. It’s a great way to get our name out there.’

The awareness campaign is backed by an advertising strategy consisting of posters in places like Second Cup in Toronto, Montreal, Ottawa, Quebec City and Vancouver. (The images were shot in Germany at Schwarzkopf’s headquarters and were repurposed by its Canadian team for North America.) In addition, 60,000 Osis postcards and matchbooks, with information on where a prospective consumer can find a salon in their city that sells Osis, are being distributed at the clubs.

While in the chair, the stylists talk about the Osis products.

‘The girls leave to go back into the club talking about the experience and product,’ she says, adding that Schwarzkopf decided not to give out samples because it’s a premium product and sampling would prove to be too expensive. ‘We expect women to walk into a salon and say ‘I went to the club last night and I’ve got to get this product.”

The Hair Troupe consists of 18 stylists. There are 45 events scheduled over five months, with the promotion ending in August. Each night, two stylists will take care of 20 women, so Schwarzkopf expects that at least 1,800 people will experience the product.

As the promotion winds down, Schwarzkopf will link up with the National Women’s Show in early November in Toronto and in March 2003 in Ottawa for a similar promo.

‘We want consumers to see Osis everywhere they turn and hopefully recognize the name and packaging,’ says Hallman.