Julep: A Polished Approach to Social Media

Have you heard of the beauty brand Julep?

0121_julep_650x455Julep began as a chain of nail salons in Seattle, Washington. In 2011, Julep’s CEO Jane Park wanted to take her business online and introduced the monthly Julep Maven subscription service. Customers receive a box of Julep nail polishes, each named after women because “Julep has been powered by girlfriends.” Now the brand has expanded to more than 300 makeup and skincare products– with the help of its customers. Park says,

“We’re not telling customers what they want… we’re responding to what they want.”

Wow. Julep is a beauty brand that is listening to consumers, and it is certainly paying off. Last year Julep made roughly $20 million (double the income of 2012). Investors are impressed: Julep has received $29.2 million from investors over the past two years. One of Julep’s investors is Maveron and partner Jason Stoffer has this to say:

“Beauty is a business where women talk to each other about what products they’re trying. It’s one of the most social businesses there is.”

Jane Park would agree! Julep’s success comes from its ability to use loyal customer feedback to quickly create, test, and sell new products. Julep reads the comments on its Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest pages and listens to customers in its salons for new product ideas. When negative comments are posted Julep does not delete them because they are valuable in assessing the products.

Julep has six social media profiles:

1. Facebook: 240,000 likes

Julep uses its Facebook page to introduce new products, start conversations about products, answer customer concerns, and link to its other social media profiles. Check out this amazing customer service example that I found on Julep’s page:

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That is the kind of customer service that consumers LOVE. Julep earns a positive reputation with its customers when it responds to their questions and concerns.

2. Twitter: 40,500 followers

Julep creates conversations with its tweets, introduces offers and sales, and links to its other social media profiles. It even gives mini makeup tutorials:

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3. Pinterest: 23,345 followers

Julep has 31 boards. They are all bright and festive! Here are a few pins:

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4. YouTube: 3,356 subscribers

Julep uses its YouTube to show customers how to use its products, to introduce new products like the nail polish brush Julep invented for its customers, and to give customers a look behind the scenes. In this video CEO Jane Park talks to consumers about her new product:

5. Instagram: 32,345 followers

Julep shares most of the same photos that it shares on other platforms. This one involves a current event that customers know about! Some customers who commented took it as a challenge to create this manicure!Screen Shot 2014-02-21 at 3.45.37 PM

6. Blog:

The blog is fun! Its sections include: NOTD (Nail of the Day), The Latest, Beauty Tips, All Things Nails, Fashion & Style, How-To, and Jane’s Blog.

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The beauty sector is worth $160 billion so companies should be listening and catering to consumer demands. Julep goes farther than listening on social media platforms. It has the Julep Idea Lab that sends an email survey out to 5,000 members to find out what customers want in a product. Currently the Idea Lab is asking customers to crowdfund Julep’s new innovative Plié Wand.

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Julep’s ability to reach out to its customers online and to engage them is what makes it so successful. I look forward to seeing Julep grow!

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5 thoughts on “Julep: A Polished Approach to Social Media

  1. I love the quote “we’re not telling customers what they want, we’re responding to what they want.” That gives a whole other meaning to the idea that companies are continuously giving us what we want before we want it. I also love the fact that Julep not only listens, but responds to posts. The conversations that create with customers are so great (I also love Jennifer Lawrence), and again I love that they are using Pinterest. Just looking at the Youtube video, Jane Park seems like a nice and caring person that would listen to customer concerns. Great post, I definitely learned a lot!

  2. Very good explanation for why companies shouldn’t delete negative comments! Julep’s ability to act as transparent as possible seems to be a great marketing strategy! Costumers always love to know that their voice matters (I know I do) so I think it is very clever for Julep to encourage customer reviews on multiple social media platforms. I also think it’s great for people to see that Julep’s CEO cares about the company and all of its loyal costumers. Awesome post!

  3. This is a perfect example of how extremely effective it is for a company to listen to its consumers – especially in the beauty industry, where, as you pointed out, women are constantly talking to one another about products they recommend and want to try. I personally love the tutorials featured on twitter, so that’s definitely something I’ll be checking out. Overall, awesome post showing the power behind a company that looks to what the consumer wants!

  4. Wow I’ve never heard of Julep before! Sounds like they really know what they’re doing. You showed perfect examples of them actively listening to their customers, and that is what makes a brand successful! I’m just surprised no one has recommended this product to me yet. Although I do understand that they are still growing. I’ll have to go give them a follow and a like on FB and Twitter! Great job with your graphics and examples, this is a great post!

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