Mally Roncal’s namesake brand has come a long way since its 2004 inception, growing from about $10 million in sales in 2008 to an estimated $75 million at retail in 2011. And it’s about to get a new element: this week, the makeup artist is launching her first infomercial nationally.
The infomercial, which will appear on affiliates of ABC, CBS, FOX, NBC and CW in Baltimore, Los Angeles, Atlanta and San Francisco, as well as nationally on cable channels including MTV, Lifetime and Bravo, is designed to deliver Roncal’s down-to-earth makeup advice to a wider range of consumers. She describes it as unlike other beauty infomercials, with a “show vibe and a cinematic, sophisticated touch.” It has 19 segments where Roncal addresses the top beauty questions women ask her — including creating a smoky eye, how to apply concealer, etc. — and drives traffic to trymallybeauty.com, an offshoot of her main Web site, mallybeauty.com. Roncal also plans to post each of the vignettes on mallybeauty.com, where she has created what she calls “Mally TV” — videos with topics ranging from makeup application to how to have a successful marriage.
“I have three kids under the age of 5, so clearly I didn’t have enough to do,” cracked Roncal.“And besides, I’ve never gone the traditional route with anything. When I launched, I didn’t go to traditional outlets, I went to TV. And basically, what I’m doing for my celebrity clients, I’m also doing for Susie in Oklahoma.”
Roncal sees the infomercial project as complementary to QVC, Facebook, Twitter, Ustream and her Web site — on each, she is evangelical about education. She appears eight to 10 times a year on QVC for shows that average about one hour apiece — a venue she has been selling in since 2005. “I tend to get motivational speaker-ish, but I have to — that’s what it’s about for me,” said Roncal. “That’s why more and more people are attracted to us.”
The brand’s chief executive officer, Don Pettit, noted, “We’re inviting new people into the brand with the infomercial, and connecting them to Mally not only through that, but on Facebook, Twitter and Ustream as well. Mally Beauty products tend to be items that need the component of expertise. For instance, two-step concealer, where if you invest the extra two minutes in the morning, you won’t have to touch it again all day. But we’re trying to deliver excitement and education rather than dictating to consumers.”
The brand has steadily increased its use of social media since its founding, Roncal noted. “It’s happened organically and early, which is why I think it’s going so well,” she said. “Everyone is part of the Mallynista (what Roncal calls her die-hard fans) family. I know these people by name — I was blessed with the memory of an elephant. I know their stories. I do things from my heart. Yes, I know it’s just makeup, but it’s also about creating a family with lots of love and support.”
While the bulk of the brand’s business is done with QVC and qvc.com — Roncal appears on the U.K. and Italian editions of the channel, as well as the U.S. version —and on her Web site,Roncal also sells on Amazon.com, Beauty.com and in Henri Bendel and Fred Segal.
Pettit said that the brand’s concentration on non-brick-and-mortar sales allows “much more of control of the brand as we grow.”
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