I recently had the pleasure of interviewing Filippo Polizzy. Filippo runs a lean Facebook marketing agency that caters specifically to beauty brands. Filippo is the current managing director of Ares Advertising, an international digital marketing agency serving the United States, United Kingdom, Australian, Canadian and Italian markets.
Having studied behavioral economics and marketing at top educational institutions around the world including the University of Cambridge and Cass Business School, Filippo boasts a wide array of skills that have allowed him to establish Ares Advertising as a top ad agency for the beauty industry.
I spoke to Filippo to learn specific strategies he’s implementing that are getting beauty brands amazing results.
Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us your origin story? Who is Filippo Polizzy?
It’s my pleasure to! I love the content you guys have been putting out. If I had to try and sum up who I am, I’d have to say international. I moved a lot as a kid due to my parent’s jobs. I ended up living in four different countries by age 18: Egypt, Italy, Spain, and the United Kingdom.
It was definitely not easy, but I would never trade the interpersonal skills that I developed from constant exposure to new cultures and people. I definitely would not be where I am today without having the childhood that I had. Eventually, I found Marketing through my dad and fell in love with it. The rest is history!
What problem does your business solve? What is the main value people get from working with you?
With the coming of the digital age, the beauty industry has become progressively competitive. The barriers of entry are getting lower everyday and consumer patterns are shifting. New consumer trends are also accelerating boutique smaller brands to rise, flooding the online space. It’s never been more difficult to get exposure and to get your product in front of the ideal customer, there’s just too much noise to do it organically.
That’s where paid traffic comes in: the ability to target with pin-point accuracy a specific consumer with a specific message and cut through the noise. Rather than putting out a product and hoping for sales from anyone, Facebook ads allow you to choose who you want your consumer base to be. It’s the true difference between a brand that wants to dominate the market and a passion project.
Beauty marketing is a space that has become more associated with women and we don’t see as many men marketing this. What made you choose this niche as a male founder.
I think it was my ability to have an outside perspective. It’s an industry as established as gold. Dictated by old practices and dusty strategies. I was able to see further than what had already been done in the industry, giving our clients an edge and helping them create a distinction between them and the thousands of other beauty brands.
Based on your experience, what attributes make a beauty advertisement sell better?
There’s a general rule that must be followed. Digital marketing has given us so much but has also taken away a crucial factor in beauty sales, the ability to feel a product in your hands before purchasing it. In a store, a consumer can smell the fragrance, feel the weight of the product, and truly understand the level of detail that went into a product, online, however, that can’t happen.
In order to combat this, you need to focus your advertisements on the product itself. Application videos, unboxing videos, testimonials, reviews. All of these are essential forms of advertising that a beauty brand needs to carry out in order to fully reward the consumer with a complete shopping experience.
This is especially true when the product costs are above £100, and the purchase stops being a habitual one, but that needs a certain level of trust.
Can you share any suggestions for newbies who have no experience with running marketing agencies? Are there potential obstacles or issues they should be prepared for with this lifestyle?
There definitely are, but I’d say that no obstacle or issue is a problem if you’re passionate about what you’re doing.
Thus, I’d recommend for them to really be passionate about marketing and running a business, 85% of marketing agencies I’ve seen fail have always been because the owner wasn’t passionate and thus even the smallest challenge seems like you need to climb a mountain.
What are your 5 secrets that you are willing to share that most business owners don’t know about Beauty marketing on Facebook?
Haha well, I can’t give my best ones away but if I had to give some advice on Facebook advertising for a beauty brand I’d say that to focus on the consumer.
- Take time to read the reviews and see what the consumers like or dislike about your product. You need to be able to handle their doubts and objections even before they are presented with the chance to purchase the product.
- This is a simple but often overlooked tip: answer questions on the ads! It’s so simple, the comment section of an ad can be used to further sell your product and convince consumers to purchase.
- Focus on authentic reviews. I carried out a small consumer research project where I asked whether consumers would be more inclined to buy a product after seeing a 5-star review with a simple line or a 4 star review with a more detailed account of the purchasing experience.
- Don’t underestimate the power of UGC (user-generated content). You don’t need a fancy photoshoot to run a profitable Facebook ad. A simple testimonial video run as a retargeting ad to help strengthen your brand image, awareness, of course, result in sales.
- Facebook ads aren’t easy. It’s a common misconception. Business owners see a connotation with Facebook the social platform and promoting/boost and think that’s all there is to it! 80% of our inbound leads all say the same thing: “We tried running ads ourselves and lost ‘x’ amount after we realized we needed professional help”. Save your marketing budget and let somebody with experience handle it!
Finally, can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?
Great question. It’s hard to pick one! I’d have to say, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you might just miss it!” I think this is something that resonates with all business owners, regardless of the industry. We are so focused on building and improving our business, ourselves and aspects of our lives, sometimes we need to take the pedal off the gas and just admire the view!
Thank you for these great insights!
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