Jennifer Walsh, CEO of Behind The Brand Media
Jennifer Walsh has been a true pioneer in the beauty business. Behind the Brand Media is a business advisory firm offering services including brand positioning and retail expansion.
What prompted you to start Behind the Brand?
I started Behind The Brand Media after I sold my first company in 2010. I founded and created what became one of the first beauty boutique chains and websites in the USA called The Beauty Bar in 1998. At the same time in 1998, I began going on TV to talk about make-up, skin care, cosmetics, etc. I have now been on TV showcasing beauty brands longer than anyone else in my field. After I sold my company, I realized that all of those years that I had my chain of stores, I was never actually selling products to customers, I was telling the stories behind the brands that lined my shelves. Whether it was La Mer, Stila, Frehs, Kiehl’s ~ I was a story teller of how each of the products was created and why.
There is no typical day in the life of an entrepreneur. Please share with us a sample of your day, start to finish.
There certainly is no typical day. I consult for many different brands (all beauty) and each client’s needs are different. A day usually consists of a long early walk in Central Park with my dog, then off to do a TV segment. Then I meet with my producers at different TV stations to work on upcoming shows. I meet with brands to work on projects that I am doing with them. My work day could be anywhere from 10-16 hours. At night there are usually beauty launch events I go to or work dinners with clients. I usually get up at 5:30 am and go to bed at midnight.
What are your ‘can’t live without’ Smartphone or desktop applications?
I LOVE my IPad! I’m truly an Apple girl, and also a gadget girl through and through! I love twitter more than anything else and use it more than any other application I have. I find so many interesting stories through the people that I follow.
What are your tricks for time management?
Since my time is usually spent everywhere and not necessarily at one desk, it is important that I prioritize my days. I create lists on Sunday night and then create one every night for what needs to get done the next day.
What was the best advice you received when you started your career?
The very best advice I received was that I can’t be everything to every body. Be great at something and make that your platform. This is why I have always said that I am a beauty expert. I have never sold or talked about anything but beauty. I see people today who state that they are experts in a myriad of things which I find rather amusing – not many people are experts in everything!
Given the current economic climate, what has been your strategy for building awareness of your business for short term and long term growth?
I am continuously networking, always. I broadcast what I am doing nationally and internationally through Twitter, Facebook,etc. to show people that I am actually an international brand and what I do truly has no limits. I build the infrastructures for multi million dollar companies.
What is your proudest achievement as an accomplished entrepreneur?
My proudest achievement was listening to my heart when I started my first company in 1998. There was no Sephora, there were no other stores that I knew of that were doing what I envisioned. People thought I was crazy and said, no one is going to buy beauty outside of a department store or let alone a website. Amazon.com now owns the company I founded.
How do you achieve balance in your life?
Being aware of my moments and to take in the things going on around me are two of the best ways for me to stay grounded and be appreciative of the little things in life. Not to mention my family!
Your top 3 book recommendations?
- [amazon_link id="0143114042" target="_blank" container="" container_class="" ]The Art of The Woo: Using Strategic Persuasion To Sell Your Ideas [/amazon_link]by G. Richard Shell
- [amazon_link id="1401302599" target="_blank" container="" container_class="" ]Words That Work: It’s Not What You Say, It’s What People Hear[/amazon_link] by Frank Lutz
What are your most rewarding charitable involvements?
All of them! Special Olympics and supporting those with disabilities.
Who has influenced your career the most?
My family has influenced me the most. I have been through quite a bit since beginning my career in beauty in 1996 and receiving a business degree in college in 1993. They said I could do anything and be anything I ever envisioned for myself.
What is your advice for someone interested in entrepreneurship?
Don’t be afraid to take a risk – I created a statement in 1998 when I was about to open my first store – I wrote on my wall:
Risk Is What You Take To Encounter Possibilities
I have lived by this ever since. I have also had my fair share of failures along the way but have been able to learn and pick myself up to keep going.
SOCIAL MEDIA FOR BEHIND THE BRAND
JENNIFER WALSH’S BIO
Jennifer Walsh has been a true pioneer in the beauty business. Her role within the industry began more than 15 years ago and has involved everything from being a celebrity make-up artist, a freelance beauty writer, a book contributor, producer of photo-shoots, a guest speaker, a veteran TV beauty expert, the founder and creator of what became a chain of beauty boutiques, the CEO of her own beauty company, and most of all her experience has made her a well respected beauty and skin care expert.
Jennifer Walsh has been noted as being the Queen of Beauty TV for her reoccurring presence on air as a beauty expert longer than anyone else in the country. Jennifer can be seen on TV 8-12 times a month across the country and has been doing so since 1998. She is the only TV personality that showcases and talks about the beauty and skin care industry, most others are lifestyle experts.
What makes Jennifer TRULY unique is her sheer knowledge of the industry, her longevity on TV as an expert, and her relationships with so many beauty brands. As the founder and creator of a chain of beauty boutiques, Jennifer was trained by more than 100 + brands and then had to educate and train her staff and her customers. She understood what it took to run a successful multi chain business. She was featured in a 30 day video diary and blog on Entrepreneur Magazine’s website in 2007.
Over the years, she has learned her craft through hands on experience. She has traveled around the globe to learn and experience the beauty business first hand. She has formed close alliances with some of the most sought after brands as well as getting to know the new kids on the block. This close rapport with industry insiders made Ms. Walsh not only a sought after retail partner, but also a strong media insider as well. She has been featured in countless magazines across the country throughout the years.
Since the late 1990’s, Jennifer has been on TV showcasing products, their ingredients, and telling the brands stories to her viewers. As an on-air TV expert nationally in the beauty industry for over a decade on ABC,CBS, NBC, Fox, Better TV, Daytime TV, etc., she is known as the one to go to educate others on their brand. As a long time make-up artist, Jennifer has had the pleasure of working with celebrities such as Jessica Simpson, Mandy Moore, John Travolta, top models, top athletes and others. Jennifer has also been an accomplished freelance writer for over a decade for books, magazines, and blogs.
Jennifer is also a small business expert on Fox Business News and Fox News. She is often asked to discuss branding, retailing and to lend her advice on what others can do to achieve success within their businesses.
Jennifer likes to be involved in all aspects of her business and the beauty industry in general. Motivated by her love of skin care products and make-up, Walsh made it her mission to learn all that she could about the industry and share that knowledge with people she met throughout the country. She continues to work closely with skin care and cosmetic companies on TV, on advertising campaigns, market research, trend forecasting, and PR. She even works with international governmental agencies on harvesting and selling their natural resources and conducting long term case studies for these agencies.
Ms Walsh’s story is one of true perseverance and passion for what she does; she is an educator and a true pioneer within her field and continues to be a serial entrepreneur in the beauty arena.