Beauty boost: How one salon owner pivoted her business in lockdown and is now using MailOnline to attract new business
When Luci Bruce was forced to close the doors to her beauty salon as lockdown first struck in March 2020, she saw it as a golden opportunity to launch some new products.
The mother-of-two from West Wickham, south east London, was left without an income stream and, with a mortgage to pay, turned her hand to producing an anti-ageing skincare range she was able to sell online.
Like thousands of entrepreneurs across the country, Luci, 40, pivoted her skills. She created her own-name creams and serums, which even gained the interest of TV stars including former reality TV winner, Cara Delahoyde-Massey.
Luci, who runs the Luci Bruce Aesthetics salon in south-east London, said: ‘When lockdown first hit, it was awful, and I couldn’t work. I’ve got two children and a mortgage, and bills to pay.
Mother of two Luci Bruce, 40, pivoted into online beauty product sales after lockdown began
‘All work stopped in March 2020, and everything was awful. I knew I needed to find a second income, and find something I could sell,’ Luci said.
‘I had already had the idea of getting into skincare, so I rapidly went into that and just focused on online sales.
‘I found a company that would make the products for me, using the ingredients I wanted them to.
‘I added vitamin C to brighten the skin, and clear the complexion, and there’s Retinol too, which is good for older clients.’
Luci explained all her beauty products, which she sells via her website and promotes on Instagram, are vegan and cruelty free, and don’t contain parabens.
Ad impressions (how many times the ads were viewed): 1,052,999
Web clicks: 993
Luci says: ‘The brand awareness has been incredible’
And the creams and serums, which range from £22-£40, have also caught the eye of celebrities, too.
‘I’ve had a good client base with reality TV stars, and they’ve promoted it on their Instagram, including former Love Island winners Cara and Nathan Massey, and some of them have millions of followers.
‘I was approached by TopShop to sell in their stores, but sadly just weeks later, the stores closed their doors for good,’ Luci said.
As lockdown eased, Luci re-opened her salon, and was busy with clients who wanted laser hair removal, semi permanent make-up, facials, and dermal fillers.
‘Because I had a six-month backlog of clients, I’ve had 16 clients back-to-back every day, which has been hard, so I haven’t had enough of a chance to promote the skincare range as much as I would have liked.’
Luci has been one of the first business owners to trial MailOnline’s new Ad Manager campaign, which was launched with SMEs in mind to help them come back from lockdown thriving.
It allows businesses to market to MailOnline’s huge audience of 25 million, while targeting potential customers by postcode, interests or life stage – all at an affordable price.
And it’s straightforward to use. Business owners can easily create their own campaign, set the budget and the target audience – and it can be live in less than 24 hours.
There’s also a friendly account manager at the other end of the phone to help you every step of the way.
Luci’s products are vegan and cruelty-free, and don’t contain parabens
Luci saw 993 hits to her website in just one week – with more than one million ad impressions.
‘It’s incredible that more than one million pairs of eyes have seen my products,’ Luci said.
‘I’ve seen a surge in web traffic, and it’s brilliant that almost 1,000 potential customers clicked through to my website.
‘This type of exposure for such a small business is incredible, and I’m hopeful that once they’ve taken a look, they’ll come back and buy Christmas presents or treat themselves too.
‘Being able to showcase my brand on a global platform such as MailOnline is something I never thought I’d have the opportunity to do.
‘I’m so pleased with how it’s raised the brand awareness of my small business!’
HOW AD MANAGER WORKS
MailOnline’s new Ad Manager advertising platform is ideal for SMEs who want to reach a large, but targeted audience of thousands of potential customers.
The system is easy to use, taking just minutes to set up – and it could be live the following day.
Ad Manager enables small businesses to reach more adults across all UK regions than ever before, with hyper-local advertising for relevant, affluent customers.
Not only can you advertise to more people in your area than your local titles can reach, you can also target customers by postcode, interests and life stage, ensuring you reach as many of our 25 million consumers as you choose.
There are no hidden fees and you can control everything, from budget to target and audience to creative design.
Behind the business:
Luci Bruce first started her career by training in semi-permanent make-up, and then progressed into facial aesthetics, including fillers.
She opened her salon, Luci Bruce Aesthetics, where she works with two other people, in 2017, and she has built a loyal clientele and huge Instagram following.
The 40-year-old reveals she’s treated reality TV stars who helped to promote Luci’s skincare brand that she launched in lockdown.
‘I decided to use my knowledge to create a range of age prevention creams and serums, and they took off really well,’ she said.
Luci developed her products with a specialist and trialled them on her friends and family
Using a skincare specialist, Luci worked with them to produce skincare products that included all her favourite ingredients.
‘I created a hyaluronic acid serum, which is good for fine lines, and a Retinol moisturiser, which is mild. Then I added on other products, such as an eye cream.
‘I ordered lots of testers to try different products and gave them to my friends and family too, and everyone really loves them. The serum clears up rosacea, and I’ve been putting it on my son’s eczema too.
‘The company makes them for me and labels them too, and I added them to my website and started selling them using Shopify which has been brilliant.
‘I sent some to Cara and Nathan, I used to do her eyebrows, and they both love the products.
For Luci, lockdown provided an opportunity to further her passion. She added: ‘I love skin and it’s a good foundation for anything. You have to look after it first and foremost to look your best. And if I can help more people to do that, I’m happy.’
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