Benefits and Cons of 3D Makeup Printing

Like it was mentioned in previous posts, 3D makeup printing technology has the potential to revolutionize the makeup industry as a whole. However, before managers can  make the decision to utilize such technology in their businesses, they have to consider if the benefits will outweigh the costs. A similar idea of what is applied here, for the Mink, can also be applied for all 3D printers in general.


Benefits of 3D printing:

  1. If mink is successfully implemented into the makeup industry, then it will open a new niche of customers because behind Choi’s idea of freedom is to have variety in makeup colors. At the moment, what Mink is doing is to get ahead in cosmetics business to have “color” as a special appeal to her identified market niche. Mink will gain a certain percentage share of the $55 billion beauty industry by making it more accessible to consumers.
  2. Managers are primarily concerned about profitability. The key question is: How is  this new technology going to help my company earn profit in the long run? From here, managers would be required to consider Porters 5 Forces which include:
  • 1) Bargaining power of consumers – There is no available alternative to the Mink  for consumer to switch to. It is the first of its kind, so customers do not have the option of substituting for similar products if they wish to purchase a printer that prints 3D makeup.
  • 2) Threat of substitutions – There is no other similar products made available yet on the market.
  • 3) Bargaining power of suppliers – Mink needs to contract with reliable vendors (including printer manufactures and printing material suppliers) to successfully market Mink without significantly affecting the targeted retail price Mink ($300 USD) and the quality of substrates used. Since it is the first of its kind, not many suppliers will have the technological know-hows of creating such a product.
  • 4) Threat of new entrants – Overtime, consumers may ask for more variety in the makeup the printer produces such as shadows with shimmers. If there are other companies who are able to meet the needs of these consumers, then there is a potential in the market for profit which would attract competition from other cosmetic companies.
  • 5) Rivalry among existing firms – “The beauty industry is highly competitive and at times change rapidly due to consumer preferences and industry trends”. If Mink is successful it will create more competition among the makeup industry. Existing companies may respond by spending more on “advertising, promotion, merchandising and packaging, and the timing of new product introductions and line extensions”.

Cons of 3D printing:

  1. Since Mink is still in its early start upstages and has not officially released into the market, business managers need to consider whether or not they will have the resources to fund the R&D of a product whose future seems vague.
  2. Managers need to consider ways to implement this new technology into the already accepted mainstream of products. Should the company celebrity endorse the product, or just let the market accept it as is?
  3. Managers should consider Porter’s 5 Forces as well as assess the feasibility of the new technology. Feasibility has four dimensions to it. It includes cost feasibility, schedule feasibility, technical feasibility and organization feasibility. For cost and schedule feasibility, managers need to consider whether or not the company has enough funding and the hours needed to finish the R&D part of the printer to release it into the market. With technical feasibility, managers need to consider if software such as Photoshop has the ability to meet the needs of the printer, or will the company be required to create a new software made specifically for the purpose of using the printer. Finally, managers need to consider organizational feasibility and whether the printer fits with what the organization is already accustomed to producing. For example, creating makeup palettes. Will the printer eliminate the company’s primary source of income?

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