Building up any company from nothing is hard enough, but starting a company in an industry with several large and deep pocketed competitors is particularly challenging. That is the challenge that EOS lip balm encountered when it Entered the lip balm market but in less than a decade it found itself dominating the industry with many of its larger competitors emulating them.
From the very start, the focus for EOS, an acronym for Evolution of Smooth, was on the customer. They found that women were the major buyers of lip balm and that they were not particularly enthralled with the lip balms on the market for them. Specifically this is because the lip balm brands had a strong medicinal flavor, were not long lasting, and it was easy for them to lose the applicator tubes in their purses.
EOS decided to combat this by using organic and natural ingredients that had flavors that women responded to and were in applicator orbs that were harder to misplace. Ingredients were higher priced than others and EOS charged a premium amounting to $3 a lip balm. In order to create a sustainable advantage, EOS had their machinery custom built for their needs thereby making it harder to copy their products. This strategy worked and EOS lip balms expanded immensely.
EOS’ products are available in a wide range of retailers and online , on ULTA and eBay (http://www.ebay.com/bhp/eos-lip-balm) also they are one of the largest lip balm makers in the world with $250 million of revenue, they have spread into other lines of personal health care products and have a varied line of balms that customers enjoy and respond to. All of this happened in such a short period of time and is a great study in the success a small business can have when they connect with their customers and listen to what they want from a product. Read the full EOS story on Fastcompany.com.