Ipsy.com case study

Topics: YouTube, Revenue, Income Pages: 5 (1490 words) Published: April 19, 2015
“Exclusive beauty finds by our stylist just for you”

What’s Ipsy.com?
Ipsy.com is a fashion website about makeup. On the website, you can read about makeup trends, watch makeup tutorials, share makeup experiences and buy makeup products. The website was started in 2011. Ipsy is the world’s fastest growing and most passionate beauty community. What will happen if you click on the website? Firstly, an online survey will pop out, asking about your skin condition, hair color and preferred makeup brands. After completing the survey, makeup news and tutorials that match your survey will appear on your home page. According to the type of stories you read, Ipsy will prepare a “Glam Bag” with full makeup samples only for you. The “Glam Bag” costs 10 US$ and can be shipped to your home. Later, you can create your own makeup tutorials, blog about your own makeup experiences and chat with other “ipsters” on the website. The contents you create would appear on the lower half of the home page. What’s the problem solving?

“What are the right products for me?” and “Can I try this product before buying it?” are the two problems solved by Ipsy. “Choosing the best makeup items for needs” is a challenge to most women. Females have to choose products among “follow the fashion trends”, “look good on me”, and “provide efficient skin care”. Ipsy.com solved the problem. Ipsy’s professional stylist team would choose unique products for different users to try by analyzing these users’ survey results and page viewing histories.

Michelle Phan, 2015 Forbes 30 under 30, co-founded Ipsy.com. Before starting the website, she was a self-made YouTube celebrity by uploading makeup tutorials. Phan’s YouTube channel has over 7 million subscribers. The question Michelle gets asked the most is “What are the right products for me?” “Full-sized and not expensive makeup samples” provided by ipsy solved another problem. Phan witnessed young women being depressed after spending a lot of money on makeup products that were later found not suitable for them. She also saw women fighting with each other to purchase very expensive makeup samples. She then decided to launch Ipsy to provide full-sized makeup samples for women to try before buying them. The price of the samples in Glam Bags is lower than market price. Where does the content come from? How the website communicates news, gather data and engage discussion? The website has two sources of content creation: “stylists” and “ipsters”. The stylists are company employees who upload makeup trends news, makeup tutorials and makeup blogs daily. The contents created by stylists appear on the upper half of the home page. Ipsters are the active users of the website who create makeup looks, tutorials and stories. Contents of ipsters appear on the lower half of the home page. (Appendix A) “Extreme targeted” is the feature of the contents provided by stylists. They communicate news to their audiences by analyzing data. Stylists, or more accurately, the computer systems, analyze survey results and page viewing history of ispy users, and then deliver news and tutorials to the audiences’ preferences. For example, if I put “I prefer natural look makeup” in my survey and read contents only related to this topic, the news and tutorials I get on my home page would be “the latest natural look trend” or “makeup tutorials of natural look”. The website would later prepare a “Glam Bag” with natural look makeup products for me to purchase. “YouTube style engagement” is the feature of the contents created by ipsters. Firstly, each ipster could create “a look-a picture”, “a tutorial-a video” or “a blog-text”

and post them on the home page. Other ipsters could comment under the content and chat with the creator. The home page and comment format are the same as the YouTube format. “Ipsy points” stimulate and engage discussions. Every time a user creates contents, comments on other contents and reviews...
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