Featuring Guest Guru, Melisse Shaban, CEO, StriVectin Operating Company
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June 2011 - Featuring Guest Guru, Melisse Shaban
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May 2011
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  Guest Guru
Melisse Shaban, CEO, StriVectin Operating Company

Q: What's the biggest risk you've taken in your career?
A: More than my time at the helm of Frédéric Fekkai, The Body Shop USA or Aveda, the biggest risk I've taken is this work of revitalizing the StriVectin brand. But the risk is paying off. StriVectin is now the largest independent prestige anti-aging skin care brand in America.

Q: You just helped StriVectin-SD Intensive Concentrate for Stretch Marks & Wrinkles and SD Eye Concentrate for Wrinkles go through a complete revamp of formula and packaging, why the need for the change?
A: We acquired StriVectin from its previous owner not quite two years ago. At that time, StriVectin had a successful business, name recognition and commercial buzz, but we knew we had the opportunity to upgrade the technology significantly to make the product performance even better. For example, we also owned a remarkable skin repair technology called NIA 114™ that was discovered through 30 years of skin cancer research by our chief scientists, Drs. Myron and Elaine Jacobson of the University of Arizona and the Arizona Cancer Center.
This technology, which is an exclusive, multi-patented niacin molecule, is clinically proven to rebuild healthy skin layers and improve the overall integrity of the skin. So we spent a year completely reformulating the new StriVectin-SD Intensive Concentrate for Stretch Marks & Wrinkles and StriVectin-SD Eye Concentrate for Wrinkles with four times more collagen-boosting peptides than the original formula, in combination with the NIA-114, to make what we believe to be the most effective age-fighting products ever. Then we backed it up with significant clinical proof including evaluations by expert physician graders, digital photography, and even skin biopsies so we could actually see what was happening in the skin. Ultimately, we were so happy with the results, we printed them right on the front of our packaging so users will know up-front what to expect from using these new StriVectin formulas.

Q: When it comes to revitalizing a brand with updated products and formulas, what is most challenging?
A: I think the biggest challenge when you are revitalizing a brand is understanding what needs to be changed and why. It's not good business sense to change something just for the sake of change.

Q: After 25 years in consumer applications, what do you find most strikingly different about marketing products to women today?
A: With the increasing influence of the Internet and social media, it's much more about a conversation today. It's no longer about just putting out a product and telling women they need it. It's amazing how much consumers depend on one another for recommendations and feedback on which products to buy. It's about engaging them and listening to them, and the feedback is much more immediate.

Q: How is StriVectin using social media and the Internet to revamp the brand?
A: We use social media to communicate directly with our consumers. StriVectin's Facebook fans are very active and seem to enjoy engaging with our brand and each other. Weekly on Facebook and Twitter, we offer skin care tips, an opportunity to pose questions to our chief scientists, Drs. Myron and Elaine Jacobson, and give away samples of our most popular products. We developed a skin sensitivity quiz, and also a new Virtual Anti-Aging Results Tool that allows you to upload a picture of yourself and see your projected results from using StriVectin twice a day for 8 weeks. Our social media team continues to find ways to activate and engage our online communities.

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