In the beginning of July, 24 Seven Talent continued the Techfluence: 2018 Innovation Series with a panel on “Technology and Innovation in Beauty,” filled with networking, delicious bites from Black Barn, and specialty cocktails by Belvedere. Our panelists, the President of Supergoop, Amanda Baldwin, Vice President Marketing of Perfect Corp, Adam Gam, Founder & CEO of Beauty Matter, Kelly Kovack, and Partner at Davis & Gilbert LLP, Brooke Erdos Singer, were joined by Avani Patel, Founder and CEO of Trendseeder, and our moderator for the evening. The discussion ranged from innovating products, to developing apps, to marketing to consumers.
Kelly Kovack began the conversation, discussing innovative technologies across varying platforms. She noted that the evolution of technology on the front end is creating better experiences for consumers. “The heart of any brand is the person on the sales floor, the face of the brand, in person with the consumer in the moment.” Amanda Baldwin discussed how technology of the cloud has changed how she runs Supergoop on a day to day basis, and how social media has completely changed the game from even a few years ago “Retail is becoming the place where people want to create these social experiences,” said Adam Gam, and millennials are always shopping in store, online, or over social media, so brands and companies are finding technologies to bring all points together.
Where AR comes into play
The panelists continued the technology conversation, discussing how Augmented Reality is becoming so accurate that consumers are able to try on makeup, accessories, and other products virtually. The future of these technologies is machine learning and AI, which will further change how brands provide product recommendations and problem solve in real time.
Almost all of our panels, including topics focused on fashion, retail and marketing, have touched on the importance of customization, and the beauty industry is no exception. Baldwin gave the example of the company Curology that is coming out with a new customizable product, and trying to balance between reality and marketing to truly serve the needs of the consumer. All of our panelists agreed that it is extremely important for all brands to ask how the consumer will benefit from the product, because if they aren’t benefiting, they aren’t going to purchase it.
There is a broad spectrum of customers, from the person who loves the full-face of makeup, glam look, to someone who wears almost no makeup at all, and then in between. Kovack brought up how some brands claim to have 45 day product development pipelines, and then with the rise of Asian beauty, they will take up to 28 years to perfect a product before releasing it. With today’s technologies, consumers are able to have whatever experience they want with a brand, so the challenge is being hyper focused on who the customer is, and what the brand stands for.
Social media changed the game
Since our panelists are all from various backgrounds and companies, they were able to share their experiences with how social media has influenced the evolution of their brands. Supergoop was founded before Instagram and Shopify, so they are utilizing social media as a learning tool to educate the consumer while YouCam has started utilizing live streams with Influencers doing tutorials and interacting with customers. Yet, as Kovack noted, implementing technology can be a slippery slope for brands, it will either inform decisions and add efficiency, or it can create a sense of inauthenticity.
Working with augmenting brands, Gam walked us through the importance of establishing brand pain points and customer pain points in order to find a natural, authentic, and accurate way to utilize the technology that’s out there. Estée Lauder implemented technology created by Perfect Corp on the consumer side, as well as on their internal training side,. They now offer augmented reality training, rather than flying everyone in for a conference, they utilize this technology to create internal efficiency and productivity.
Who to hire
All panelists discussed the importance of finding employees who are masters at a specific trade to best thrive in the evolution of technology. But the most important quality to have in today’s world of technology and innovation is adaptability and willingness to change. Jobs are not as siloed as they were previously, so it’s important for all employees to be open to doing a little bit of everything, especially with smaller brands that have scaled and are slowly integrating technology and training.
Our panel ended with a Q&A on real-time communication, product development, and other technologies impacting all industries. Want to listen to the full panel? You can listen to this event, as well as our past events on our new podcast channel, here or watch the highlight video on our YouTube channel!
Stay in the know with future Techfluence events.