What ‘creates’ mojo? Is it an amazing scent? Beautiful hair? Gorgeous skin? All of the above..?
If you fear that you’re slightly lacking in the mojo department, or you’re concerned about maintaining – or growing - your ‘mojo level’, then you’ll be happy to hear that the secret to it has been bottled. Yes, bottled!
To find out more, we caught up with Paul Adrian; he’s the man behind Mojo Hair, the new premium men's pro salon styling and grooming range that, after only 3 months, is already on sale in the UK, USA, Canada and India …
Marketing Pandas (MP): What inspired you to create Mojo Hair?
Paul Adrian (PA): I’ve spent 20 years working in the advertising and marketing industry –including owning my own agency developing and launching major brands – I began to develop a strong interest in the product side of the business. When Will King, the owner of King of Shaves, approached me to help grow his brand, I jumped at the chance.
My role as Global Sales & Marketing Director King of Shaves focussed heavily on international expansion. After 4 years with the brand, I couldn’t help but be inspired by the booming male grooming market. As I began looking into the feasibility of creating a skincare brand, I became aware of just how dynamic the hair business was. And then the idea for Mojo Hair was born.
MP: What makes your products so special?
PA: Combining pro salon products with luxury fragrance is what makes Mojo Hair products different. A compliment from my wife – about the smell of my hair after I’d been to the barbers – opened my eyes to the fact that nice smelling haircare products weren’t readily available for men. I visited a luxury fragrance house, combining the scents I loved most, and added them to the hair range. Addressing this unmet need is what takes Mojo Hair a step above the rest.
Mojo Hair is all about style and helping you define your individual style therefore branding plays a huge role in making our products just that bit more special too. The packaging needs to reflect the premium positioning of the product range; I've always believed people buy with their eyes - black and gold packaging makes it look powerful and masculine, while housing the haircare goods in premium glass jars gives it even more of a luxurious – and unique - feel.
I’ve incorporated the things I love most in all branding efforts – the design of Blue Note record covers, Cuban cigars, Jaguar cars, rock’n’roll, guitars … This is the Mojo Style ‘feel’. It’s really turning heads and resonating with the target audience.
MP: … and we noticed that you even offer beard care. Can you let us know a little more about this? (NB: neither of the marketing pandas have beards)
PA: The hair on a man’s face is no different to that on his head. You can get dandruff or irritations with a beard too. This hair needs to be looked after, nourished and of course styled.
MP: Ahh, we see! So, tell us – ecommerce seems to be incredibly important when it comes to Mojo Hair. Why’s that?
PA: We are a challenger brand and the Internet gives us instant access to the global market overall. We take a multi-channel approach to getting our products out to the global market.I don’t intend to have my products stocked in every high street store, but everything needs to be available to all of my potential audience. I’m taking the digital approach to selling; early adopters are already buying into the brand online. It’s slower growth, but better margins.
In the last 18 months, the digital marketplace has changed so much, and there’s a lot of competition out there. Rather than compete with the big guys, I’ve partnered with them. You can find my products on Amazon and also on Mankind (Hut Group). Our website (a Shopify site) is used primarily for brand building purposes.
MP: International expansion seems to be where it’s at for you – what drove you to tackle this so early on?
PA: A lot of brands don’t have a global perspective, but if you do have one, you can do anything. Skills are transferrable, and thanks to my previous roles, I already had great contacts in key markets. We already have distributors in the USA, Canada and India . What’s more, there is a demand for premium British brands – products that are made in Britain have instant gravitas and a positive, luxurious association for audiences abroad.
MP: Does demand for haircare products differ between countries?
PA: When it comes to international demand for haircare products, the need is driven by the media’s portrayal of men. All over the world, celebrities are endorsing beautiful skin and picture perfect hair; men worldwide want to have access to products that will help them polish their look and individual style.
The biggest difference in terms of demand is in the types of products that perform well. Best-selling products, for example, differ by country. In the UK and India, the natural look is in, whereas in the States, it’s all about the slicked back look. Both styles require unique products. This means that our product offering has to meet each geographical segment’s needs. When it comes to international adaptation, there’s no one size fits all.
MP: Other than hair style preferences, how else do the countries you sell in differ?
PA: One of the other main differences is where people buy their products. In the US, for example, a lot of people tend to buy premium hair products from salons and also online. In India, mobile shopping is where it’s all at. Taking differences like this into consideration when reviewing your international strategy is key to success.
MP: What are the biggest obstacles or difficulties that you’ve faced when creating and launching Mojo Style?
PA: Manufacturing is definitely one of them. Having been in the agency world, you get used to coming up with a great idea, pitching it to a customer, winning the pitch and then just doing it. In manufacturing you have production time, longer lead times and lots of risk when it comes to investment. Will the product work? How can you effectively manage stock levels to meet demand?
The cost of growing the business is another obstacle that all new businesses face. It’s not cheap and there’s always the risk that it won’t work.
That said, it’s exciting. I’m in the process of extending the brand, offering new skincare products, an aftershave, a scented candle … the key thing to keep in mind when you’re expanding your range is that once your brand is out there and strong, you need to make sure that everything hits the bullseye.
MP: What advice would you give to others looking to launch a new brand globally?
PA: Make sure that you’ve got the right experience; have you worked in the industry before and have you got a vision of how your product/ service is different , is it innovative does it add value above and beyond the current market offering , can you say so what?And of course ensure that you have plenty of funding too!
When it comes down to it, there’s a lot of risk involved, but you really just need to do it; you don’t want to wake up in 20 years’ time and regret anything.
Also be aware that there’s no one thing that can predict or guarantee your success,it's still very early days for us.. Ultimately, it comes down to a lot of hard work and luck.
MP: What makes everything so worthwhile?
PA: Knowing that people love your products and the brand that you’ve created makes everything worthwhile. Getting repeat orders and realising that you have loyal customerswho are really getting something from your creation is amazing. I recently had an email from a salon in Chicago, writing to tell me how great the product is. It’s that kind of thing that makes you feel really good.
As well as that, the opportunity to meet loads of interesting people and sell something you are passionate about around the globe!
Big thanks to Paul for taking the time to chat with us. Head over to his website and discover more about the brand, its products and where they're stocked online. Go on - reclaim or maintain your mojo!