Enjoy the wins- It’s important to recognize the wins even when they are small. Early in my career I was extremely hard on myself / my team and I had trouble acknowledging the milestones. This was very frustrating for my team members and ultimately self-defeating.
I had the pleasure of interviewing Jamie Glassman the Chief Executive Officer of MUBIC, a makeup brand incubator dedicated to launching innovative, inspirational, high-quality brands to market. With an extensive marketing and business development background, Jamie’s robust expertise is cemented by her ability to adapt and execute strategy in a rapidly changing marketplace.
Shortly after graduating from University of Wisconsin-Madison, Jamie leveraged her passion for beauty to begin her marketing career at L’Oréal USA where she built global, sales-driving campaigns for powerhouse brands such as Maybelline, Essie and Garnier Skincare. Mostly recently, Jamie served as Senior Vice President of Marketing & E-Commerce at Rituals Cosmetics before joining MUBIC in her current role.
MUBIC accelerates beauty brands through non-traditional channels of distribution by providing a single access point for deep category knowledge and manufacturing relationships. Jamie led strategy for MUBIC’s debut brand launch with Amazon: ONE CLICK b.EAUTY, a digitally-driven line that celebrates positivity through color cosmetics.
Born and raised in New York, Jamie lives in Manhattan with her husband and two children, Charlie and Miles.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Before we dig in, our readers would love to learn a bit more about you. Can you tell us a story about what brought you to this specific career path?
I grew up with a lot of exposure to beauty marketing, from my mother who was a beauty executive. She was really great at exposing my sister and me to both the glamorous sides (model and celebrity shoots, product and shade range development, advertising) and operational sides (merchandising, pricing, distribution) of the business. Every time we walked into a drug store beauty aisle she would say “what do you see?” and we would spend time talking about what was working, what wasn’t and why. I started my career in finance and media but ultimately I couldn’t get away from the passion I’d cultivated for consumer marketing and beauty.
Can you share a story about the funniest marketing mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?
This was not funny at the time but I can certainly look back on it and laugh! When we acquired essie at L’Oreal there were a million things to do to bring the product to market in a short period of time, and one of those things was approving artwork for the nail color bottles. I am a terrible speller to begin with and some the essie names are very quirky. Well I released 200k pieces of a nail color with a completely misspelled name and no one realized until it was in market across 20k doors! The lesson was details mater, take the time to pay attention even when there is no time.
Are you able to identify a “tipping point” in your career when you started to see success? Did you start doing anything different? Are there takeaways or lessons that others can learn from that?
Some of the high points certainly included launching essie into the mass market and establishing it as the #1 nail color brand, and more recently driving exponential growth of Rituals digitally in the US. For me the key takeaway is maybe the view is better from the peaks but you always learn more in the valleys. If you want the view again you have no choice but to push through.
What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?
MUBIC was started about a year ago as a Makeup Brand Incubator dedicated to launching high quality, innovative, accessible brands into alternative channels of distribution. We are unique in that we provide business management, manufacturing relationships and partnerships all under one umbrella, and we’re here to help influencers, celebrities, and other innovators redefine the space.
Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you think that will help people?
ONE CLICK b.EAUTY is the first brand we’ve developed and we aim to bring ease, quality and accessibility to people for every moment of their lives. It’s exclusive on Amazon.com.
We have more exciting projects in the works. We aren’t ready to talk about them yet but watch this space!
What advice would you give to other marketers to thrive and avoid burnout?
Having a creative outlet outside of your day job helps taper them (at least for me). I have always had side projects, hobbies and activities to turn to when things start to get overwhelming. For me sewing, skiing, climbing and creating strategies for new business concepts or existing businesses that are suffering (that I have nothing to do with) are good ones. For example, I like to think about if I was CEO of X company that is about to go out of business what I would do to revive it.
None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?
There are so many people who have been advocates, advisors and friends along the way, I know how lucky I am in being able to say it is almost impossible to single one out. With that said Wendy Charland has played a particularly important role in my career. I reported to her for much of my career at L’Oreal and she taught me a lot of what I know about how to write a strategy and build a brand. She let me have a voice and a seat at the table when she could have easily left me out of the conversation. She is a fabulous mentor and now a close friend.
Ok super. Let’s now shift to the main part of our discussion. There are hundreds of memorable marketing campaigns that have become part of the lexicon of our culture. What is your favorite marketing or branding campaign from history? Can you explain why you like that so much?
Some that still really resonate with me are the ‘Got Milk?’ campaign and the Absolute vodka ‘Cities’ campaign where they put the shape of the bottle in different world landmarks. Both of these are timeless in their own way, instantly recognizable, simple and very easily understood. I think the Chanel fashion show strategy has been absolutely brilliant for the brand — apart from creating a lot of buzz and driving a lot of traffic it really showcases the tremendous creative power behind the brand — really inspiring.
If you could break down a very successful campaign into a “blueprint”, what would that blueprint look like? Please share some stories or examples of your ideas.
A good campaign should evoke some kind of feeling that might be aspiration, relatability, envy or desire. It has to be memorable and simple to understand but most of all it should provoke in some way, that can be by asking a question, driving an interaction or surprising its audience. I am not sure there is a blueprint or formula — the fun is in evolving with the consumer and adapting to the changing conversation in our culture.
Companies like Google and Facebook have totally disrupted how companies market over the past 15 years. At the same time, consumers have become more jaded and resistant to anything “salesy”. In your industry, where do you see the future of marketing going?
I think in beauty marketing will be even more about hyper-micro influence and word of mouth referrals. In some ways its going backwards but I think the role of a trusted opinion is going to become even more important.
Can you please tell us the 3 things you wish someone told you before you started? Can you please share a story or example for each.
They all fall under the same theme:
1-All in due time- I was so eager to start my career after college. I was worried if I didn’t get off to a running start I would fall behind my friends and peers. I wish I had taken time to be a ski bum for a year or two but I was convinced I would fall behind and never achieve anything if I did. Not doing it is one of my few regrets.
2-Stay humble and do the work./ early in my career I was passed up for a promotion and told it would happen 6 months later. I was devastated! I huffed around, grumpy and miserable for the entire time….what a waste of time!
3- Enjoy the wins- It’s important to recognize the wins even when they are small. Early in my career I was extremely hard on myself / my team and I had trouble acknowledging the milestones. This was very frustrating for my team members and ultimately self-defeating.
What books, podcasts, documentaries or other resources do you use to sharpen your marketing skills?
I call my husband my research department he sends me tons of content from literally everywhere to help keep me sharp. I also only read non-fiction and while it is not always about modern business it’s almost always about innovation or leadership in some way. Some of my favorite authors are Erik Larson, David Grann, David McCullough and Adam Bryant. Fast Company and WWD are also on my reading list.
Who is your hero? Can you explain or share a story about why that person resonates with you?
I really admire Richard Branson. He had a vision and has built an empire around it. He has had to pivot many times as consumer needs have changed but has always risen to the challenge and found new ways to make Virgin successful. He has a people-first approach and an adventurous spirit both of which resonate really strongly with me.
How can our readers follow you online?
They can follow us @oneclickbeautykits on Instagram/ facebook or me @jmginthecity