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Building a Beauty Brand Online

By: Herman Chein
Posted: January 31, 2012, from the January 2012 issue of GCI Magazine.

page 4 of 5

Communicating with consumers is vital, and the Internet—notably blogs and social media outlets—is invaluable in spreading the word about a beauty brand and connecting with consumers. UNT’s efforts in building a nail brand is an apt case study.

UNT launched its natural nail lacquer collections in 2009, and by the time this article was written in 2011, sales volume on the collections in Taiwan exceeded that of an established global brand nearly fourfold. To make headway as a entirely new nail brand in Taiwan, UNT built a story around each season collection. For instance, one of the fall/winter collections, “The Grand Destiny of Elie Ledoux,” is built on the story of a young Parisian actress’ rise to stardom. Each color in the collection is labeled with its chapter in the story, and they all, individually and taken as a whole, elicit romantic emotions tied with the colors and their use on nails.

For the launch UNT, invited bloggers, not professional manicurists or stylists, to write and share their personal thoughts on the collection’s story and the emotional impact the story had on them. Thanks to the latest social sharing behavior, consumers then shared their stories with each other and shared how much they liked each color—which further facilitates the purchase decision of all the consumers in that conversation.

In these efforts, it is also important to educate consumers about the brand and products. In this case, UNT made an effort to educate consumers on and draw their attention to differentiators—how these lacquers smelled in relation to other lacquers, durability, shine, etc. The lab test results from SGS (a control and inspection company represented in more than 130 countries by 210 affiliated companies), demonstrating full compliance of the nail lacquer to accepted/permitted standards.

For an online-based beauty company, answering customers’ questions and helping consumers learn more about products (or even more on related and wholistic topics—skin care, for example, beyond treatment via a product) are critical. How fast the consumers receives the answer to a question is critically important to a successful outcome—a purchase. UNT Skincare’s experience shows that if a question is answered within 20 minutes of it being asked, the probability for the purchase is dramatically increased. Therefore, UNT has developed its own live chat customer support system and collaborates with a team of medical professionals to provide customers with free skin consultation services. Through this tool, customers can learn the most up-to-date and science-backed information on skin and cosmetics.