RUSK Deepshine Color was introduced to the market in 2006. MODERN SALON interviewed VP and General Manager of Conair Pro, Alan Stockman, on the development of Deepshine, on RUSK's commitment to education and the brand’s plans in this anniversary year and moving forward.
MS: Please describe the search for a color line to add to the RUSK portfolio and what qualities you were looking for in a color system.
AS: The haircolor space has been growing, getting progressively more crowded, and is obviously so competitive. We knew we needed to bring the iPod into an mp3 player world. We were taking the heritage of RUSK and this extraordinarily well-defined business and broadening it to offer a true and complete portfolio. If you are going to serve salon professionals, you need to be in the color space.
Everyone seeks the same holy grail but few are able to define it. We were looking for the world’s most extraordinary haircolor, offering amazing color, clarity, condition, shine, excellent grey coverage and accuracy in level and formulation. We literally looked throughout the world. Conair is a substantial, multi-national company and we believe we found the finest haircolor product available anywhere.
MS: What are the challenges that any company will face when launching a color line?
AS: Unless you have the stomach for investing, you have no business being in haircolor. As a business and manufacturer, you must have people to do education, you must have the time, as this is a door-by-door exercise and you must have the resources and commitment to invest in the business for the long-run.
You also need to understand the local dynamics. European companies have come to the US and expected their success at home to cleanly translate to success here. An effective business and market plan is a local, living and breathing one and succeeding is based on execution at the grass roots.
MS: What was your launch strategy?
AS: We weren’t going after anyone’s business. We just wanted to put out the best Rusk color line possible and support our salons and hairdressers creatively and financially. It was a comprehensive approach, bringing to bear all the unique component elements that Rusk offered.
MS: Your educators were instrumental in the launch of DeepShine Color 10 years ago. How do you continue to educate around DeepShine Color?
AS: It’s sort of goofy but it’s walking the walk. You have to have people, and enough of them, in the right places. It was a piece of how we grew from the beginning and how we do it now. Haircolor is so consultation and education intensive, education support isn’t something that a manufacturer can stop. Hair color is a journey we’re on with our salons; there’s not and endpoint (except happy customers).
We need to provide knowledge, technique, newness, excitement, relevance on an ongoing basis. If you’re not educating with respect to haircolor then you are not in the haircolor business.
MS: Final words?
AS: We entered the haircolor business with purpose. Looking ahead, it is our responsibility to discover what is next and best for our salons and our hairdressers. I look for the next ten years to make the first ten, which were really successful, look like just the beginning.