Thinking back to when Cheryl and I had met our chemist, and asked him if he could assist us in the formulation of our ideas and products. He assured us immediately that our products would be superior to anything on the market, because we already had a great idea and foundation.
With a humble twinkle in his eye, he said, "Don't worry about the final formulation. I will take care that it is perfect, stable, beyond expectations and it will be pretty to look at when it comes out of the bottle, and it will feel like the most luxurious cream in the world. You just pay attention to the sales and marketing!"
That was a few years ago. He was right, too. It just took us much longer to create the exacting formulas that we wanted to present to the world. He was right, AND, he worked faster than we could. We had NO experience with production, packaging, branding, and no financing. So, for those of you who've been with us from the beginning, you know how every day, all we focused on was how to serve our clients and customers, and find ways to keep the business growing. For everyone who has praised from the red carpets, or blogged, muttered, mispronounced and even those who denounced us ("the product is great but sooo ugly"), and returned our products (even handed me their stock in a trash bag that had been sitting on the floor of a salon), we say thank you!
We've grown. We've learned more than we ever wanted to learn. We've cried. We've been hurt.
To those who suggest things, most of you have noticed that we not only listened, but we took your advice, and it has all made a glowing difference.
Back to our original advice from our chemist--"You just pay attention to the sales and marketing," is exactly where we are today. Of course, there are more things to deal with in a day than we ever expected, and we have to manage it all. Our focus of learning and growth is in the sales and marketing departments. It honestly took us this long to fine tune things, especially the new packaging that we wished we could have done from the beginning, but had no idea how much it would cost to get to this level! Now, we have packaging that parallels the performance, and we are so grateful to Sally Lyndley for her creative direction and Humda Mubarka for her extraordinary delivery of our new look!
Many of you have experienced transition of our packaging from the original black and white to our new Luscious Latte Look over the past year as we've painstakingly orchestrated something we had no idea how to do!
We also did not know how to keep things going as things started growing too fast, either. Successful people talk about it, but we had no idea what it would be like. This past few months have been unbelievable. In one way, you could say we are all over the place and the other is that we are floundering at what we are presenting! Said another way, one day we're all about the red carpet, the next day videos of how to restore hair extensions, the next day Brand Partners with www.Meatheads.tv, the next day water skiing, the next day sponsoring the Blue Thong Society, the next sponsoring Makeup and Hairstylist Guild Awards events, and a cast of hundreds of celebrities in Hollywood, Disney, boy bands, AlexisJoyVIPAccess, Social Slam Selfie Awards, and the list keeps going! Well, all of a sudden, it seems that we got our message across, and the lucky break has finally happened! We are completely behind in telling you what we are really working on currently. We try to stay current, but as we speak, we have two major events to share about in our PR efforts, but we are pressed with deadlines of artwork for labeling of a repackage, finalizing a new formula to be released in the near future, and that's just the production side. Shipping is under reorganization, and we are so behind in marketing and educational materials that we are almost embarrassed to open another salon or store account!
Well, all this to say--we are paying attention to the sales and marketing...just like our chemist said! Like learning a new skill, we are just getting started, and the learning curve is steep! Thank you to everyone who tweets, blogs, Facebooks, Instagrams, and all those social media things that we are learning! Thank you to all of you "word of mouth-ers" ( you know what I mean), for talking us up, referring your friends and giving Belegenza as gifts to your Besties. Thank you for keeping up with us, looking past our original packaging, and loving our products, and especially for loving us. We truly have done this because of you!
We really love hearing from you, so keep the emails coming, the questions, the phone calls, the tweets and direct messages, the texts, and cards and gifts! This next few months are sure to surprise everyone-especially us! We have some exciting new products to release, and a possible new project that we can't even tell our mom and dad about yet!
To our dear chemist who is our living legend hero,* "OK."
Alan & Cheryl
*By the way, when we met him, he said, " I'm interested in you all because you are on to something that has never been done. I was the Director of Research and Development for (can't say for legal reasons but you have their stuff in your home, I promise!), and I'd like to make my name for having made safe and natural products that exceed those and make the world a better place."
P.S. Here's a bit of our latest work, and pulls together the "all over the place" business! (only 2 minutes)