While retail sales have been struggling during the pandemic, Peace Out Skincare has seen a growth surge. In June, the brand sold more than it did in all of 2019 on its DTC site, with increases in young customers and bulk buying. During the June 8 Glossy+ Talk, Enrico Frezza, Peace Out’s founder and CEO, and Junior Pence, Peace Out’s creative director and CMO, shared their secrets to growth.
“Our team became very nimble, and we just started monitoring our data every single day and changing as that data came in,” said Pence. Below were some of the factors driving sales.
On shifting imagery from models to ingredients and products
“Our normal consumer shifted once we got into DTC full force, from looking for shiny, sparkly, glow-up sort of imagery to direct benefits, ingredients. ‘How are you going to treat my skin? What’s the result going to be? What type of ingredients are in your products?’ Those types of keywords, those types of messaging points, really were the things that people were looking for. Our imagery, in terms of models applying [products] to the face, were not working. We immediately changed to product-specific imagery: a picture of a dot, a picture of a pore strip, a picture of a wrinkle patch. Those really started driving traffic,” said Pence.
On driving conversion through YouTube influencers
A YouTube video with influencer Fei Yang showing a before-and-after with the brand’s pore strips “became a hit” with over 2 million views. “That caused a three-times increase in the traffic to our website, and pore [strips] saw double growth in conversion. We sold out on our own e-commerce and on Sephora.com. Fei is now in partnership with us as a brand ambassador for our newest launch of the Peace Out acne serum,” said Frezza.
On the importance of TikTok influencers
“It’s been a mix, but right now, TikTok is pretty much the game,” when it comes to driving site traffic and DTC sales, said Pence.
“We started really focusing intently on TikTok in January and putting a strategy together,” said Frezza. “And we started organically gifting and seeding TikTok influencers. We seeded Kaelyn White, who then posted a TikTok video showing the before-and-after using the pore strips again. And Hyram [Yarbro] who is, I believe, the biggest skin-care influencer on TikTok — has 4 million followers — did a duet with Kaelyn showing a reaction video of the before-and-after. Our pore-strip sales grew by four times in 24 hours. We sold 15,000 units in one day on our website.”
On launching a site redesign
“We wanted to integrate it with much more animation, [make it] easier to navigate and [have] more information about the brand,” said Pence. “We built on our blog post section, too, because we do a lot of work with dermatologists, and posting on conditions and explaining education is hugely important for us. We really built out that portion of our site so that we could educate our consumer even more. And we just changed the overall look and feel of it to be more fun, more alive.”
On keeping the supply chain going with increased demand during the pandemic
“[The supply chain] was one of the first things I started working on in February, because I saw how [the pandemic] affected Italy’s supply chain. We worked on three scenarios: “really, really bad,” “really bad” and “bad,” said Frezza.
“We started moving everything ahead, so shipments that would have arrived three weeks later, we just moved everything into high gear and brought it all into the U.S. We started to see that other companies were being affected by the ability to distribute, so we wanted to make sure that we had at least nine months of inventory on hand,” said Pence.