How the circle beat the stick: The Total Domination of EOS Over Chapstick

It takes a lot to get my attention online. Web browsing for me is pretty rare as a pastime. For me, online = work, so I make my entrance and exit as quickly as possible. One story that will always catch my eye is what makes innovative companies succeed and exactly how that spells demise for their antiquated competition. Trending news stories capture the death of retailer after retailer. Are companies losing because their products are inferior? Or are the tastes of consumers just changing?

Being a lipstick daily user, I rarely use a lip balm, hence rarely purchased lip moisturizers. Many consumers do include lip balm on their shopping lists- men, women, children, and my mother. A few years ago, while visiting my mother, she pulled out a pink round ball out of her purse and begins to apply it to her lips. This is surprising and stands out in my mind because my mother barely washes her face or bathes regularly. (She did not grow up with running water, as she firmly likes to explain.

I have seen EOS advertised here and there and have also seen it at checkout aisles. I always wondered how it was doing- and who was possibly buying it(besides the mother). I stumbled upon an article, by Elizabeth Segran, that details the fascinating tale of industry innovation at work. “The Untold Story of How Lipbalm Upstart EOS Out Did Chapstick” is an article that explains the rise, motivation and ultimate success of EOS.

The article begins describing Chapstick and lip balm history. Chapstick is the “Jello” of the cosmetic world. Everyone calls gelatin, by a brand name, JELLO. This made other brands insignificant because people would associate JELLO with just one product, and they would go to stores looking for JELLO and not gelatin. JELLO had a monopoly on the gelatin market, partly branding, partly consumer habits. Before the advent of EOS, lip balm options were limited. Red chapstick or black chapstick. Single or Triple Pack. Every now and then a consumer might mix it up and go with a Carmex. Chapstick reigned supreme in the simple, portable, lip-care department.  Check this on

Details abound regarding the early days of the EOS founders- the companies they went up against, their target audience, and decision-making behind packaging and aesthetic appeal. One of their focuses was ergonomics, handling appeal and design of the case itself. Interestingly enough, EOS was first marketed towards women, millennial women in particular. Sanjiv Mehra, company co-founder, received enthusiastic responses from female buyers who agreed to give EOS a chance. One female buyer, in particular, let EOS grace her shelves. Where was this buyer from….Walgreens.

Advertising strategies chronical how EOS gained popularity via a variety of channels, for added details, click on   As with any product, especially cosmetics, positive reviews will do a world of wonders. Glowing praise combined with social media marketing, an affordable price point, and staple health care item status- equals financial success. EOS had additional marketing plans up their sleeves. Partnering with shoe brands, fashion designers, and even Disneyland- EOS grew to dominate the market and shred competition.  For more, visit EOS here.

Mehra has plans to add spin-off products, such as shaving cream, to their brand. How well does EOS do? A million globes of EOS lip balm fly off the shelves per week.

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