Skin care brand, Hey Honey, is extending its global reach thanks to a community-focused strategy based on active listening to customer reviews, and developing and evolving products based on their wants and needs.
Hey Honey is keeping it real. The skin care brand infused with honey and propolis, founded by former advertising executives Katerina Yoffe-Larden and husband Nisso Larden, is laser-focused on learning from customer feedback and making product decisions based on these insights.
“Our model is real life, real skin care,” said Katerina. “We are a fast-acting brand, not gimmick. We want real people, real reviews. We listen to the good and to the bad. And we know how to support a brand.”
Since Hey Honey was founded in 2014, the brand has generated over 650,000 reviews, with an average rating of 4.7/4.8 out of 5. The brand has also won industry awards, and doubled its sales since it launched. “From year one, we have been profitable,” said Katerina.
This June, Hey Honey will be debuting at Douglas in Germany, the specialty beauty retailer with more than 2,400 stores in Europe. The brand will then be rolling out in five additional countries in Europe by the end of the year, including France, Spain, Italy, Portugal and Austria.
Hey Honey is also available on Ulta.com, Dermstore, QVC, Look Boutiques in New York, and on the brand’s own website.
With so much brand rollout taking place in 2018, managing momentum is Katerina’s top priority. “We are self-funded, and it is a challenge to allocate our money wisely, launching in-store and online. So many good things are happening, we have to focus on doing things right.”
Hey Honey places huge emphasis on creating and engaging with its community. “A big part of the success with Douglas will be creating a community that gives us real reviews, real feedback.” Hey Honey’s 24-SKU facial and body care range includes bestselling products such as Good Morning Honey Silk Facial Serum (over 200K online reviews), 24Seven Day and Night Revitalizing Cream (over 60K online reviews), Take It Off Exfoliating Peel Off Mask (over 70K online reviews), and Besame Mucho Shea Butter and Propolis Lip Balm (over 250K online reviews).
Honey contains more naturally-occurring antioxidants than almost any other botanical or naturally derived source, and propolis accelerates rapid cell generation.
The brand manufactures all its products in Israel and Europe. “We choose the right labs that really know how to work with these delicate ingredients. Not many brands have propolis in their skin care,” said Katerina.
With their joint backgrounds in online advertising, Katerina and Nisso are focusing their marketing efforts almost wholly in the digital realm. “Managing our online presence is all done in-house. Our experience shows that you have to be there, in your head, invested in the digital space. You have to be fully involved.”
“We are trained to give customers every possible reason to come back and purchase the products because the product delivers. We don’t pay influencers.”
The brand has had huge success with its sampling efforts to date, especially with subscription boxes. It created ongoing buzz with just 200,000 samples of Good Morning Honey Silk Facial Serum at Glossybox Europe. “We have a very high return on sampling: 35 percent,” said Katerina.
Hey Honey also has a special relationship with Ipsy, with whom they do sampling three to four times a year. “They are the community that helps people get to know our products. Customers give specific reviews about texture, scent etc. We learn what product is good for which kind of customer.”
“We’re putting our products into the hands of people, so we listen.” For example, when the brand received feedback that the texture of its lip balm was too greasy, it tweaked the bestselling balm to make it softer and smoother.
“If we have two million followers or just 20, we will listen,” said Katerina.