BEAUTY THINK TANK
Fusion Brands Uses Science And Innovation To Develop Products With A Point Of Difference
In 2005, LipFusion® Micro-Injected Collagen Lip Plump burst on the beauty scene and became an award-winning product that was the first in a series of launches that were driven by fusing breakthrough advances in dermatology, cosmetics and biological anti-aging sciences. After LipFusion® Micro-Injected Collagen Lip Plump, other hero products soon followed, which included GlowFusionXL®, StimuLashFusion®, LashFusionXL®, CLEAN™ Perfume and Bath and Body line as well as other products that are now available in over 40 countries worldwide.
In May 2009, Eugene Melnyk acquired 100% controlling interest in Fusion Brands, Inc. after having achieved
success in the medical publishing and pharmaceutical fields. Mr. Melnyk subsequently appointed Caroline Pieper-Vogt as Chief Executive Officer of Fusion Brands, Inc.
Ms. Pieper-Vogt sees Fusion Brands as positioned to be an “innovation think tank, in which FusionBeauty® and CLEAN™ will be primed to launch new products that go beyond meeting consumers’ needs and bring new molecules, new categories and new ways to think about beauty.”
She affirmed that “the fusion of skincare and color technology lets Fusion Beauty’s products do double duty for the customer. They contain incredibly potent, high-powered ingredients and strong claims based on clinical testing.”
“Fusion Brands’ owner is a brilliant businessman who has been in the pharmaceutical realm and understands testing and the high impact of ingredients and results. Eugene is committed to provide all the financial resources to help us invest beyond what we need in order to achieve our goals,” Ms. Pieper-Vogt continued. “Coupled with his support is the knowledge, passion and experience of our Fusion Brands team.”
“We’re not just testing for safety, compatibility and consumer acceptance. We’re clinically testing our products to substantiate the performance claims we make. We just don’t test it through self-evaluation but also through a third party independent. It’s rare to find color products that are tested to this level.”
According to Ms. Pieper-Vogt, FusionBeauty® invests in rare and scarce ingredients, and no expense is spared in the percentage of these ingredients that are used. “That’s why LipFusion® Micro-Injected Collagen Lip Plump always worked, and why
consumers continue to purchase it over and over again.”
“We are keeping up the tradition of [using] intensive ingredients at very high levels with superior clinical testing. It is what Eugene Melnyk completely understands. That’s why we now call our brand Fusion Beauty ColorCeuticals®,” she explains.
“We have been in a position where we had incredibly successful products, but they were all individual successes. To take these single hero entities to become a true brand—products that speak to each other and create a complete beauty experience—is the concept behind FusionBeauty ColorCeuticals®. We’re pushing both FusionBeauty ColorCeuticals® and CLEAN™ to becoming complete beauty routines—products that synergize, complement, work together and talk to each other.”
“It is a wonderful merging of beauty and pharmaceutical concepts with sex appeal. We don’t baffle you with science; we make you beautiful and desirable with science. We make it feel like fun.”
Fusion Beauty® combines clinical testing with statements from women about the performance of products with objective measurements by computers and independent laboratories
and Dermatologists as well as tangible before and after result photos. “It is with objective and subjective evaluations that we measure and prove clinical results to our customers,”
Ms. Pieper-Vogt added.
She further explained that Fusion Beauty ColorCeuticals®’ collection of hero products are now repositioned, rebranded and even expanded. “It will appeal to a broader audience. It might be about preventative care as well as resolving an issue. The customer wants to maintain a healthier lifestyle, so we’re in the business of providing the best possible beauty products and beauty solutions using the best technology that is available to us today.”
“Caroline and I are the ultimate beauty consumers,” confides Fusion Brands’ Roslyn Griner, Senior Vice President of Marketing and Product Development. “When we brainstorm around the table, we think about what products we want to use to improve our looks and our lives. We are different women with different skin types and different age groups creating products that we want to use based on clinical testing.”
Ms. Pieper-Vogt reported that along with Fusion Brands’ two current companies—FusionBeauty ColorCeuticals® and CLEAN™—they will be exploring other categories such as the multicultural market in the months ahead. “The sky’s the limit. FusionBeauty ColorCeuticals® and CLEAN™ fragrances have become lifestyle brands, but there are many other possibilities to create new brands as well as eventually acquire businesses and distribute brands. There are a lot of opportunities for us, which is why Mr. Melnyk has brought our company to New York City (444 Madison Avenue) so we can be at the center of it all.”
Because of Fusion Brands’ innovative beginnings and its big success in its first few years of business, it is frequently approached by suppliers, Ms. Pieper-Vogt said. “We are presented with a lot of ingredients from suppliers and even universities, which come to us because they trust and know we can formulate well, launch well and can be quick to market. Even before my time, our culture has been to encourage innovation and creativity from every corner of the company. We have a unique culture based on passion, transparency and respect. We share ideas that bring a lot of fresh thinking and out-of-the-box concepts. There is no fear in this organization. Our product development team that reports to Roslyn works with outside sources that make themselves available to us because they believe we’re very innovative.”
Ms. Griner noted that Fusion Brands’ Director of Research and Development, Tammy Yaiser, has a product development background and is a marketer, “a combination that makes her creative in terms of this industry. When a vendor comes here with a raw material, Tammy sees the potential of how you can exploit that material as a product that will have meaning to the consumer.”
For example, FusionBeauty ColorCeuticals® uses Amplifat™ technology, a concentrate suspended in calcium-based microspheres that mimic the results of injectable facial fillers as an ingredient in products to promote increased density and volume in the face. Currently, Amplifat™ is used in FusionBeauty ColorCeuticals®’ SculptDiva™ Contouring & Sculpting Blush and IllumiFill Line Filling Luminizer™. “We have the ability to see the potential of these raw materials and use them in creative ways to basically satisfy key consumer benefits,” Ms. Griner commented.
The same strategy that Fusion Brands brought to FusionBeauty ColorCeuticals® is also applied to CLEAN™
with intelligent ways to improve a person’s life and be clean. The newest SKU in the CLEAN™ line is alcohol-free
Anti-Bacterial Moisturizng Hand Cream. Ms. Griner calls it a breakthrough innovation in the hand sanitizing category that incorporates SafetyDerm® technology to protect hands from 99.9% of germs continuously for up to four hours after application. She pointed out that alcohol has no persistence, so there is a constant need to apply alcohol-based sanitizing formulations.
Fusion Brands is actualizing what Ms. Pieper-Vogt defines as a transformational beauty technology to enhance the consumer experience. This technology incorporates a computer application where, for example, the consumer can see how she would look with an application of Infatuation™ Liquid Shine Multi-Action Lip Fattener, and how she would look four weeks later with plumper lips. “It shows a realistic portrait to the customer of the end benefit.” This technology will be introduced first with a bricks-and-mortar partner, but she noted that eventually it will be available online.
As a beauty marketer, Fusion Brands exercises smart sourcing for its suppliers in order to keep its price points competitive. “We are able to source efficiently, which allows us to put our money into the actual formulations,” Ms. Griner commented. “We are able to pass those savings along to our consumers.” Without compromising on the presentation of the products, she noted, “We are able to find the right package at the right price point that still satisfies the customer’s expectation of a luxury product. If you don’t deliver those benefits and the customer doesn’t see results after using your products, she’s going to move on.”
Ms. Pieper-Vogt declared that FusionBeauty ColorCeuticals® and CLEAN™ were born largely at Sephora. “Sephora has been one of our most important partners and is known for having very educated Cast Members who are fully trained on FusionBeauty ColorCeuticals® and do a great job of representing us. We have a full gondola and space/location at Sephora. As we
transition from FusionBeauty® to FusionBeauty ColorCeuticals®, you will see the gondolas start to morph as they communicate the new branding positioning.”
Fusion Brands has been successful, she commented, because [its products] deliver results. “Now we are coupling those benefits with exciting marketing materials and advertising. We have signed Kim Kardashian as the face of the FusionBeauty ColorCeuticals® collection,” she revealed, “and she will represent the LipFushion® franchise as well as the launch of IllumiFill Line Filling Luminizer™. Kim will help us get the word out, and people will want to learn more about the brand.”
Ms. Griner reported that market research revealed that consumers are very interested in
getting information about Fusion Brands online. “Over 42% of the consumers who
purchased LipFusion® went to our Web site to find out about our other products. Today’s consumer does her research online. She likes to hear testimonials in terms of product reviews on blogs. We are on Facebook and Twitter. Social media allows you to educate your consumers and have a dialog with them. You get reviews and realistic portrayals of your brand. It’s also a way to entertain and have fun with your consumers. Over Valentine’s Day, we ran a XXX Kissing Guide. We had a sex columnist online who addressed questions one-on-one about achieving the perfect kiss.”
Over 14,000 fans have signed up on Fusion Brands’ Facebook page to learn more about the products. “We are getting traction in online purchases directly from our ecommerce Web site,” she added. “Due to our social media, we are getting double digit growth in the number of purchases generated on our Web site.”
In the spirit of giving back as exemplified by the many charitable causes supported by Mr. Melnyk, Fusion Brands is continuing that altruistic tradition by its commitment to kiss away poverty with the launch of the limited-edition FusionBeauty ColorCeuticals® LipFusion “Luxe Boudoir” Capsule Collection. It includes four new LipFusion® Radiant Shimmer Color Shine shades, and $1.00 from its sale as well as $1.00 from the sale of every LipFusion® Infatuation and LipFusion® are donated to the Seven Bar Foundation’s “Kiss Away Poverty” campaign.
Ms. Pieper-Vogt maintains that the DNA of Fusion Brands is transformational beauty through the use of high science and clinical testing. It is completely believable and can be trusted. “That has been the key to our success, and we will continue the tradition. We want to bring out products that are needed, wanted, desired and loved by the consumer. We will only bring out products that have a point of difference. They have to be innovative and to deliver results. Both with FusionBeauty ColorCeuticals® and CLEAN™, we believe we are fulfilling that mission.”