Starting a business is a daunting but fulfilling endeavor. If it’s your first time, you might even find the uncertainty quite scary.
Luckily, you can overcome these moments of doubt and fear of the unknown with the determination to succeed and passion for the industry you’re planning to enter. Knowing the rate of growth of the market wouldn’t hurt, either.
Based on a report from the market research company The NPD Group, skincare is the fastest-growing consumer product market worldwide. As part of personal care, these products sell quickly, leading to an eight percent growth year-on-year during the past few years.
To have a taste of this profitable industry, you’ll need to plan your product line well. This means you’ll need to learn as much as you can in navigating the business.
From doing in-depth research to creating a memorable brand, here are five secrets that could potentially improve your chances at success:
Do research on the industry and products.
Before you can launch your own personal care brand, you’ll need to think of the specific products you’ll want to focus on. For instance, you can go with bath and rejuvenation items like soaps, lotions, bath salts, and aromatherapy blends.
The key is to choose a “hero” product, which will serve as the star of the show to be supported by other items. In the example above, the soap can be your hero product, while the remaining items can be the extras.
After that, you should learn as much as you can about the products you choose to offer during the research phase. Begin with online sources and books, as these are great for gaining basic knowledge of the subject. However, you’ll need to learn more to gain a more in-depth understanding of the industry you’re trying to enter.
If you have access to qualified experts and instructors on that particular subject, consider taking a class with them. This will also allow you to expand your network and potentially learn more about the market.
Know the legalities of the business.
Besides the product and market, you’ll also need to study up on the legalities of a personal care business. The requirements for most handmade cosmetics are quite similar to other businesses. The only notable difference is that these products are regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
To get them certified, you need to prove that your products are safe for consumer use. There are also conditions of use and labeling requirements that you need to learn about.
Take note that regulations may vary depending on the country or state where you are manufacturing your products. Where you intend to sell them also matters. Again, do some research before you begin investing your money.
Look for suppliers.
The first stage of the manufacturing phase is the selection of suppliers for both the tools and ingredients you’ll need for your product line.
Even if you plan to begin producing your personal care products at home, you’ll still need the proper equipment in your kitchen or other workspaces.
Some products, like clay facial or pomade, require the use of mixing bowls and spoons – two items you probably already have in your kitchen. However, soap-making may require additional tools, such as soap molds.
After getting your tools and equipment, you need to buy the ingredients next. Seek out personal care ingredient suppliers that offer both affordable and high-quality items. You should also look for alternative products that may provide better results.
For instance, alpha-hydroxy acids (AHAs) are common ingredients in many anti-aging lotions and creams.
However, AHAs have a few side effects, like sun sensitivity and mild irritation. While these can be avoided with sunscreen and by reducing the ingredient concentration to about 10 to 15 percent AHA, you can also replace it with beta-hydroxy acid.
More commonly known as salicylic acid, this active ingredient also removes dead skin and improves sun-damaged skin and acne breakouts. More importantly, it is less irritating than AHAs.
Test out your products.
Because personal care products are used directly on people’s bodies, you must make sure that they won’t cause irritation or any other adverse effects.
One thing you can do is a patch test for the skin. This is strongly recommended for consumers who try out a new product in the market, but it can also do you good when creating your own personal care product line.
Of course, you can always work with expert chemists and dermatologists to ensure your products’ quality and safety before they hit the shelves.
Besides the actual products, you may also need to look closer at the packaging, especially for makeup and skincare items. In many cases, going for cheaper packaging can lead to issues, like undesirable reactions between the product and glue or skin irritation caused by package materials.
Create Your brand identity and plan your marketing strategy
Good products go to waste when not properly introduced to the market. To make sure your company doesn’t fall into this trap, work with expert brand and marketing professionals in creating a brand strategy and marketing plan for your new personal care line.
First, you’ll need to pick out a business name and logo. When deciding, make sure that you factor in the following qualities of excellent brand names and logos into your decision:
- Clever but easy to remember
- Resonates with your customer base
- Reflects who you are as a company
- Expresses your vision and goals
After taking the necessary legal steps to ensure you can use names and logos exclusively, it is time to implement your branding across all your platforms.
If you plan on having an office or physical display of your products, you can put your logo and name on store signages. You may also create a website or page in an online selling platform bearing the same information.
The key is to be consistent.
Starting a personal care product line can be daunting, but with the right amount of research, patience, determination, and expert help, you should be able to see your goals more clearly. Take the secrets listed in this article to heart, and watch your business bloom.
Lamia Rochdi is the Marketing Manager at Bell Flavors & Fragrances EMEA. A successful family-owned business, Bell’s core competencies include customized solutions for the food and beverages industry, the household and personal care sector, and the perfume industry.