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If you’re thinking about breaking into the beauty industry, congratulations. You’ve identified a steadily growing market that still has plenty of room for you. Globally, the industry is set to exceed $716 billion by 2025, and the pandemic has trained consumers to shop from home. That means it’s anyone’s game, and there’s enough money involved for a lot of winners. Here’s what you need to know to start a beauty brand that’s meaningful and profitable.
Many beauty gurus get their start by identifying a void in the market and inventing the solution. Some brands emphasize cruelty-free products, makeup that doesn’t look like you’re wearing makeup, or hair products for specific textures. Maybe you can’t find the perfect lip balm, so you’ve created your own at home. If you can target a neglected audience, you’ll amplify your chances that your product will catch on quickly. A few examples include lip balm for pets or lip balm that you can also use to style your hair and oil your bicycle. You’re not looking for a gimmick, necessarily, but rather a brilliant answer to a specific problem.
Today, beauty means looking good and feeling good. Customers are more informed about where products come from and how they’re made. Consumers are more likely to know who the people are behind a company. That’s good news if you don’t mind promoting yourself and the story behind your products. It’s even better if you source responsibly, manufacture sustainably, and stand for something other than profit. Consumers want to enhance their individuality, not adhere to magazine-dictated beauty standards. If your line is all-inclusive or reaches out to an underserved demographic, you’re on the right track.
New beauty companies don’t have to pony up for astronomical ad prices during primetime. It’s better to target your audience from unique angles with diverse approaches, some of which are free. You can create content for social media that engages buyers through challenges to use your products in original ways. You can educate viewers with tutorials on YouTube and recruit micro-influencers who truly love your line to be brand advocates. If you encourage honest reviews from real people in an open online community, you have a chance to interact with consumers and adjust your products according to their feedback. As your company grows, your early fans will feel more invested and grow with you. The best kind of customer loyalty is organic, not bought.
A lot of your competition comes from famous names parlaying their celebrity into cash. The most recent success stories—Kylie, Rihanna, Gaga—have a built-in fan base and an established image. But what you need to know to start a beauty brand is that everyone loves a good makeover. You may be an underdog now, but you’re more relatable than a celebrity and have endless ways to get your name out there. Word of mouth works, but you’ve got to start it somewhere.
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