Our guest, Millie Kendall, is a retail maven and brand creator, who has spearheaded the development of many popular cult brands including Shu Uemura, Aveda, Tweezerman, L’Occitane and Ruby & Millie. A top industry thought leader and policy influencer, find out what’s new and what’s next in HBA and what Millie is focused on globally as the CEO of The British Beauty Council.
Millie Kendall joined me for another episode of The Reboot Chronicles. Millie is a brand creator and retail maven with more than thirty years of retail, brand and marketing experience. Widely known for her role in the development of a multitude of iconic beauty brands such as …..she was named CEO of the British Beauty Council, a consumer-facing industry organization that works with the beauty industry and government in order to drive industry growth, in 2018. She immediately set a course to help re-define the UK beauty industry, working through the nonprofit organization to shed a more positive light on the industry, generate awareness and foster a greater sense of community.
Navigating through Digital Noise
Millis says consumers, now more than ever, are willing to try new brands - a consumer behavior that is expected to continue – and a trend that represents a great opportunity for new brands.
She says for entrepreneur’s looking to start a brand in this environment, innovation is key and highly sought after by the marketplace. To take advantage of this, she has some key pieces of advice:
1. A strong, well-defined brand voice is important now more than ever. Indie brands have the opportunity to create a large presence for themselves with consumers attracted to brands driven by purpose and advocacy.
2. Originality is critical. Copying competitors is not going to set one’s brand apart and will be quickly noticed – and dismissed – by consumers.
3. Have a clear message and purpose. This is essential in order for consumers to clearly understand what your brand does and what it’s values and principles are. This will be especially appealing to consumers as transparency is a must have by consumers.
4. Surround yourself with supportive people. Millie says the importance of “staying close to home” for newer brands is key right now as a way of engaging consumers who share similar brand values. Once you connect with them, these consumers will be vital in helping to spread the word, which is a great – and affordable - supplement to traditional marketing tactics.
What’s Lies Ahead
Though the coronavirus has had a significant impact on the beauty industry, especially cosmetics, it has also opened the door for opportunity. Millie states, “it’s important to understand that in ten months our business acumen online will be where it would have been in ten years if it hadn’t been for COVID-19.” With the push for personalization and adaptation in the industry, brands and retailers are forced to adapt quickly and are given a grand opportunity for innovation.
About The Reboot Chronicles Podcast
Hosted by Dean DeBiase. The Reboot Chronicles is a popular no-holds-barred podcast on iHeart Radio, iTunes, Spotify, Google Podcasts, and YouTube that has been bringing together CEOs, entrepreneurs, authors, and global leaders, for over a decade, to discuss how organizations are rebooting their leadership-competitiveness of everything from growth, innovation, and technology to talent, culture, and governance. Tune in wherever you listen to podcasts or at https://www.revieve.com/rebootchronicles.
About Dean DeBiase
Named a Growth Guru" by Inc. Magazine, Dean DeBiase is a Faculty Member at Kellogg School of Management and Silicon Valley serial CEO, where he has served in chief executive and chairman roles of more than a dozen emerging growth companies, CEO of Fortune 500 subsidiaries, and a director on public, private, family-enterprise, CVC, PE and VC boards. He is a Technology Fellow at Northwestern University, a Board Leadership Fellow at The National Association of Corporate Directors, and an Advisor to the National Science Foundation. A Forbes Contributor and co-author of the best-selling book The Big Moo, Dean, is working on his next book, Dancing with Startups. Connect with Dean here: www.linkedin.com/in/FollowDean.