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From $10,000 to 8-Figure Beauty Brand, Stacey Hollands Shares her Secrets to Building Lust Minerals



This is Stacey Hollands for Female Startup Club. Welcome back to the show - it’s Doone here, your host and hype girl! In today’s episode we’re learning from Stacey Hollands, the founder of Lust Minerals. Stacey has such a cool story - she started the brand back in 2014 with just $10,000 and has bootstrapped it entirely to the 8 figure business it is today. We chat through her playbook to getting started in the early years with retail, how their influencer strategy has evolved and the $350,000 rebrand that was a pivotal moment for the business.


FOUNDER STORY

“I've always had a passion for the beauty industry, always doing people's hair and makeup and skin. Another big pivotable moment for me was when my dad became ill with cancer. We made a big lifestyle shift. Health is more than just food and nutrition, it is everything.”

  • Stacey leaves school at 15 to attend beauty college and gets a job doing facials and treatments

  • She works at a clinical skin salon and develops a passion for transforming skin

  • Stacys father gets cancer so she researches natural health; she also experiences acne herself

  • At the salon Stacey learns about mineral makeup that can treat skin; her hands get irritated from constant facials

  • Sarah quits to create her own mineral makeup brand, setting up a home salon to spend time with her ill father and develop Lust Minerals


For me I had about $10,000 startup. I invested everything back into that brand and I still do. Originally we launched into phallons. When you are starting out, you can't expect to take a wage within the twelve months. It's the cash flow down the track that no one ever taught me.


  • So 2014 in September. Yeah, we launched. We sort of hustled for the first two and a half, three and a half years working on R&D.

  • We did get 80 stockists within the first two years, which is incredible when you think about it. From when you're in a salon, it's all about reputation and having brands that people know of and have heard of, because they want to come to the salon to get that brand. So when you think about it, to have 80 stockists within the first two years with a brand that had no history, I feel looking back is such an incredible achievement.

  • We did not move to ecommerce and online sales until 2018. 2019. So for the first sort of three and a half years, we were solely direct to consumer (and I was big on that because I know from when I was in a salon, they wanted exclusivity)

  • We were growing like 130% year on year. By 2019, we honed right into influencer marketing. By 2024, by the end of 2024, I think it will definitely be changing again. It's just keeping up with the times and continually evolving.

  • 2019 to 2021 really just continued to domino. So as I mentioned, we got our products into the hands of some incredible local women that loved it. And this was very new then.Influencers wasn't how it is today. You could give product, we didn't expect anything in return. They genuinely loved it and shared it.

  • Our eye cream went viral. We woke up one morning and we had eye cream selling every 30 seconds. This is big for us, men and women all over. We are bringing patent ingredients that have clinical studies behind them into natural products. That can lead on to growing the brand and introducing those people to other products - keep working on our TikTok strategy and encouraging partnerships this way.


SOCIAL MEDIA

That's when we started to bring in social media for maybe it was about six to nine months before then. We gifted products around that time, and it was really late 2018 and then 2019, we honed right into influencer marketing. We didn't start meta ads until 2020.


So we grew all of that through that organic social proofing and word of mouth. That was quite a big one for us. We had no other marketing.


RE-BRAND



And then from 2021, we did a full rebrand, which I saved and saved and invested $350,000 into the rebrand. And we just completely changed the way people perceived us as a brand. I think we fitted in that era and how we looked and how we perceived in that time was great and that's what worked.


So it's just keeping up with the times and continually evolving, not completely reinventing the wheel, but knowing when you can push the boundaries and try new things, I think is what's essential for this new 2024 era. We haven't, I don't think we have access to it yet, and we've only really taken up TikTok ads in the last two months. So before that we were really where it's at. 


BRAND COLLABS

Branding collab secret: So we also are tapping into that because if you can hone into some brands that are the same era as you in the same demographic, the same consumer, it's really valuable to share that data with each other. 


A good example: we might do a voucher swap, for instance. So you're having prime customers, you might put a voucher in the orders and you collab with a brand.


They do the same voucher in their orders as well. It's a very co branded flyer and you could do it multiple ways. You could just put a flyer in there, you could do a dollar off.


You could say, hey, here's $20 off this brand. And that brand would say, hey, here's $20 off lust. You could scan a QR code and send them to your website where they fill in their name and email. But make the prize big. You would need to make the prize a higher value to have them do that many calories. And that's going to build your database and audience.


WHAT’S NEXT

We are now an eight figure brand, which is incredible for us. This year it's all about our beauty school. It's educating our community about our products and why they are different. We aren't just a foundation, we are makeup meets skincare. Education has been a barrier.

  • 6-module course online for our community 

  • Havn’t seen a module cours from a beauty brand like this


Advice: Understand your community. What they want, what they need, their pain points. Your vision. Be crystal clear about your vision. Lead with integrity. Lead with your truth. Stay true to yourself as a brand, your values, and dare to be different. Get clear on your purpose. The full makeup rebrand "completely transformed the way the brand was perceived ". Stay in your lane and get really clear on where you want to go. 

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