Luxury Brands Not “Off the Table” for Soko Glam

While it’s unlikely to happen in 2018, Soko Glam’s expansion into the luxury space is not “off-the-table,” co-founder Charlotte Cho told Jing Daily during the Women’s Wear Daily (WWD) Digital Beauty Forum yesterday.

“Some of our members have asked if we would like to sell more high-end skincare brands. We’ve been really thinking about it,” she added.

Soko Glam is a US-based beauty and lifestyle site aimed at women aged 24-40. Its emphasis is on Korean beauty products, popular among Chinese consumers both in the United States and in China.

What makes a luxury skincare brand different from a less expensive one? “It’s all about the experience,” Cho said. Luxury K-beauty brands like Sulwhasoo, for example, often incorporate ginseng and traditional Korean medicine in their skincare products.

At the forum, Cho discussed how she brought K-beauty to the West, building the site from a modest startup. With an increasing number of luxury beauty e-commerce platforms emerging in China, Jing Daily asked Cho if she had any suggestions for running a successful site.

Digital Beauty Forum at WWD. Photo courtesy: Jing Daily/Huixin Deng

In retrospect, she said the key to running a successful e-commerce platform was taking the time to build relationships within the community. That meant providing information and opportunities to try different products rather than giving them a hard sell upfront.

She said including product experts during the sales process was also really helpful, though Soko Glam doesn’t hire KOLs for its marketing. Instead, it approaches influencers who “really want to see a difference in their skin, and who really want to go on a journey with us.” KOLs will then voluntarily recommend the best products and promote their discoveries to their followers.

“My takeaway is that you don’t chase revenue; you chase the mission,” she said. “It really is about building trust and offering experience.

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Beauty & Health, E-Commerce