Beauty Store Business

AUG 2018

Beauty Store Business provides solutions for better retailing! New products, industry news, savvy business moves and important trends affecting both brick-and-mortar and online retailers are included in each issue.

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24 August 2018 | beautystorebusiness.com Brit + Co hosted a pop-up in SoHo to con- nect with readers and offered an entire area designed for sharing on Instagram. Meanwhile, she says, Glossier uses its signature reusable pouch and stickers to extend the retail experience beyond the store, elevating these seemingly inconse- quential items to must-have accessories for "it girls" everywhere. "Glossier's pink bubble pouch is very functional to protect purchases, but it has been popping up as a fashion item on the streets of New York," Tsukimura explains. "And their inexpensive stickers are cheeky and dynamic, while allowing their core audience (millennial women) to promote the brand in their own way." GIVING BACK Today's consumers prefer to patronize companies with a conscience. Pledgeling, based in Venice, California, is a digital platform that connects retailers and nonprofits; it has seen up to 30 percent revenue growth for companies that integrate social impact into the DNA of their company, reports CEO James Citron. Scrubz, for example, regularly donates to six charities, creating different scents of products to give back. The company has co-hosted a fundraiser called The Breast of Everything for the past decade–making customers feel good about the business' sense of social responsibility. Not only will customers appreciate your commitment to improving your community, these efforts will also provide inspiring stories you can share with local media outlets. "Giving back to the community is always a great idea, like bringing in ladies from a local shelter and making them feel special with makeovers," suggests Adam Leech, founder of Tharros Media in Baltimore. "You can find most of your local reporters on Twitter, so make sure you follow them, interact with them (via retweets, likes and comments) and highlight them in your own social media a couple of months before you let them know about your charitable efforts." Similarly, giving-back stories are ideal for sharing on social media. Recently, Dettore and 10 employees at Nue participated in a walk for breast cancer awareness and raised donations for the cause. Community causes and lesser-known charities remain top-of-mind for the business year-round. "We're always happy to contribute gift baskets or donations," Dettore says. "We find that, on social media, people like more personal posts, ones that show your staff or tell about your business behind the scenes–not just stock images of products." ON THE GROW Customers may be able to purchase products online, but nothing can replace the personal touch of a professional beauty service, which is why many stores have delved into offering treatments alongside their retail offerings. "Paintbox truly elevates its services, transforming a manicure offering to a high-end boutique experi- ence by presenting designs in a menu, like a fine wine list," Tsukimura says. "And Benefit Cosmetics builds brand love through experience with its Brow Bar, offering a service that consumers need, and thus forging a deeper connection with the brand." At Nue, a full menu of facials and brow and lash beautifiers are complemented by a "secret menu" with intimate-area services. And having treatments brings in extra revenue through retail, too. "Most treatments can be paired with products," Dettore explains. "Almost every service requires some form of aftercare or upkeep, and we educate clients on the process– why a product is great and what benefits it offers–so they leave better informed." But how can you expand the range of what you offer if you have no space to spare? Beyond keeping business hours that fit into more shoppers' schedules (Crowhurst believes the 10-to-5 model is a thing of the past), think of other ways you can increase convenience. "Retailers, from drugstores to super- markets to Nordstrom, are offering valet shopping now–'just call us and we'll have your order ready,'" Crowhurst says. "It's a great point of difference for customers who know exactly what products they want; a staff member can bring them to their car, or you can arrange for a staff member or UPS to make a home drop-off." Alternatively, she adds, you can work with suppliers to create your own sub- scription service à la Birchbox. Millennials embrace this type of program, and it adds a monthly revenue stream without requiring a single step inside your store while intro- ducing customers to brands that they might not have tried otherwise. ARE YOU EXPERIENCED? Smart retailers know that customers must be wooed from the online mire by offering not just products and services but a full in-store experience. Gingras again points to Glossier as inspiration. "Although first known for being a surprise e-commerce success, they're increasingly moving their data-driven approach offline by creating a limited number of unique, luxurious, high- concept stores and showrooms–inspired by everything from theater and perfor- mance art to magic shows–that are 100 percent Instagram-friendly, just like their brand," he explains. Tsukimura agrees that successful retailers must develop their brick-and-mortar experience to one that is "engaging, experiential and traffic-driving." She also recommends retailers "have a seating area that encourages friends to connect and try products. For example, Roman & Williams Guild in New York City is creating a new definition of retail by combining a cafe/restaurant with a floral shop and home décor retail—blurring the lines between the experience of shopping and dining/relaxing." Crowhurst believes that engaging the senses (sight, smell, touch and sound, especially) is key to delighting shoppers. "Offer beverages like tea or strawberry- infused water; provide a seating area or comfort station where they can sit and browse product info online; create a fun area where they can test products; install a television or a video wall with information on products and services," Crowhurst suggests. "Though it's so simple, have staff welcome them as they would welcome a guest to their home. Go the extra mile to create that experience." Ultimately, a welcoming space sets you apart and resonates far beyond your four walls. "Succeeding in beauty retail isn't about having a spot at the Nordstrom makeup department or offering a gift with purchase anymore; it's about bolstering the momen- tum of your digital brand by creating small, intimate retail spaces that customers need to see to believe," Gringas concludes. "Follow in the footsteps of this new wave of retailers by first and foremost creating memorable experiences. Shopping online will never be able to give you the same feeling of being part of a movement and moment like visiting a brick-and-mortar location can." ■ Tracy Morin is a freelance writer and editor based in Oxford, MS. At Nue Brows to Brazilians + Beaute Bar, esthetician Christina Melton helps clients navigate the retail area. "Retailers, from drugstores and supermarkets to Nordstrom, are offering valet shopping now–'just call us and we'll have your order ready.'" —Barbara J. Crowhurst, CEO, Retail Makeover Courtesy of Nue Brows to Brazilians + Beaute Bar

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