For decades choosing the right lip balm for your lips meant checking the grocery store checkout lane for a tube of Chapstick. That all changed seven years ago when Evolution of Smooth (EOS) released their orbs of lip balm. They quickly became available at ULTA, Walgreens, eBay, Target, and Walmart while Allure and Cosmo sang their praises in their magazines. Eventually, pictures were released of huge stars such as Kim Kardashian and Christina Aguilera using balls of EOS every day and they became a sensation.
While these products have quickly become one of the more popular lip products, EOS itself hadn’t shared their business strategy with the public until now. They recently provided an exclusive interview with Fast Company about how they created a company that is worth $250 million dollars and is the second most used lip balm in the United States. Sanjiv Mehra, the managing partner and co-founder of EOS, stated that they believe that it is important for consumers to know what sort of values EOS stands for now that it has become so popular.
Reimagining the Standard Tube
Over ten years ago, Mehra paired with Craig Dubitsky and Jonathan Teller to take a crack at offering something new to beauty aisles. They thought that lip balm was the perfect choice for an innovative overhaul seeing as the current products weren’t any different than those from 100 years ago. They also found that most companies were treating lip balm like a unisex product such as toothpaste.
However, their research showed that this product was used primarily by women who reported that they were constantly losing their Chapstick in their purses. Research panels showed that many were open to the idea of pots of lip balm but most were uninterested in using their fingers. So the team set about creating a lip balm that would revolutionize the industry while sticking around for the long haul.
They considered how to create a product that would engage all five of the senses, from the color to the smell, all the way to the shape and how it felt in the hand. They choose to price their product at around $3 so they could compete with other products while still using organic ingredients. Finally, they chose a tagline that would connect with the users, finally settling on “The lip balm that makes you smile.”
Reaching the Millennial Customer Base
After a struggle to get into stores, they needed to attract their customer base of women between the ages of 25 and 35. They used influencer marketing, contacting beauty bloggers who spoke about the product on their blogs as well as YouTube and Facebook. EOS quickly made itself into Britney Spears and Miley Cyrus videos and was endorsed by Taylor Swift so that they swiftly became the largest advertiser in their category of beauty products.
The brand also partnered with other players across the market, working with Keds to produce an EOS shoe that was accompanied with a lip balm. Additionally, they worked with Rachael Roy on a limited-edition collection for the holidays while creating a collection with Disney that quickly sold out. This work quickly paid off for the company as the brand emerged as a common household product within seven years.
Even with all these successes, Evolution of Smooth is still focused on innovation. They are constantly coming up with new collections so that consumers see a stream of new products on the shelf. They are focused on continuing to revolutionize the beauty market to bring the fun back to their consumers with a touch of class and convenience.
EOS Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/eos/