One year into her post as President and Chief Executive Officer at Rodan + Fields, Diane Dietz is working to build an organization that can sustain the skin care company’s double-digit growth rate.
“We’ve been growing more than 50 percent a year for the past five years,” says Diane.
The company said it is on track to reach $1 billion brand status, but Rodan + Fields has not shared a timeline for this goal, or its 2016 sales.
In 2015, the company said it reached net revenue of $629.9 million and 90 percent year-over-year growth.
Hitting the $1 billion mark means accelerating the product pipeline, which has been modest, and ramping up IT systems to make it easier for its 200,000 independent consultant to sell.
“We are a full-end consumer experience,” says Diane.
She’s also fine-tuning the brand message to reflect the mission of brand founders’ doctors Katie Rodan and Kathy Fields.
“We are rallying around the idea of ‘a life-changing skin care company,” says Diane.
After meeting with Katie and Kathy, Diane says she became “enamored with the brand.”
“They are very inspiring, yet incredibly humble,” she says.
She came to Rodan + Fields from the more traditional path of retail and consumer products. Prior to joining the company in January 2016, Diane had most recently served as Chief Marketing Officer and Executive Vice President at Safeway Inc., the grocery and pharmacy retailer. She also spent 18 years at the Procter & Gamble Co., where she helped broaden the position of the Crest brand from oral care to beauty as the teeth whitening trend accelerated. While at P&G she also played a role in the Gillette acquisition, overseeing the integration of the Oral-B business across North America and globally.
She says her years at P&G taught her that the end-product has to fundamentally please the consumer. Diane counts Susan Arnold, the former head of beauty at P&G, as a mentor. She says Crest and Rodan + Fields share a common link, as they are both designed as professional-powered products for at-home use.
She acknowledges that prior to joining Rodan + Fields she had some preconceived notions about the direct selling channel. But in her view, technology has enabled Rodan + Fields to be “a disruptive brand.”
“The world is changing. Having spent the last seven years in retail, I saw the changes arising,” says Diane. “How people shop has radically changed.”
Rodan + Fields marries technology with people through its field of representatives, who rely heavily on social media to recruit future team members. They frequently post photos of gifts and luxury trips that they’ve earned as consultants.
“To get great skin care, there has to be a personal interaction,” says Diane. “The world of retail and beauty is changing. Rodan + Fields is a part of that.”
Under Diane’s watch, the company is increasing the pace of product launches, increasing from a rate of a few products every two years. Diane declined to comment on the current accelerated pace, but said new entries will target unmet needs with dermatologist-inspired skin care.
Digital and social media are important tools for the company, with Facebook emerging as a key platform for sales and recruitment particularly as it expands its reach internationally.
The company launched in Canada in 2015, and plans to enter Australia this year.
To meet the attendance demands for Rodan + Fields’ annual convention — a gathering of representatives held each fall — the company introduced a virtual platform in 2016 to allow consultants to view the event from their homes. Still, consultants who attended filled the MGM Grand Las Vegas auditorium, says Diane.
As a mother of two young girls, ages 4 and 7, Diane is also much like many Rodan + Fields consultants who juggle parenting and business, except that she’s tasked with growing a billion-dollar brand against a backdrop of established giants.
But she’s determined to navigate around moguls, even in her spare time. Several visits to Lake Tahoe, Calif., to watch her husband teach her daughters how to ski, prompted her to take ski lessons.
“I’ve only had two lessons, so I am a beginner. Skiing is a great family activity so there are more lessons in my future,” she says.
As for how she measures success, Diane declares, “We hope to be the number-one skin care brand.”
Rodan + Fields CEO & Founder, Amy Errett will be speaking at CEW’s upcoming event, The New Beauty Dynamic, on Thursday, June 1, 2017. The event will take place at Fairmont Miramar Hotel & Bungalows in Santa Monica and will kick off with a pre-event cocktail and networking reception beginning at 6:00 PM followed by the program at 7:00 PM. Event tickets can be purchased online at CEW.org.