Kitsch is determining how you can showcase its genuine on a regular basis branding by a brand new content material studio-slash-residential dwelling.
The 11-year-old model sells hair and physique merchandise like hair towels, scrunchies, brushes, and sleep merchandise like silk pillowcases and eye masks. Over the final three years, Kitsch has skilled 13x income progress, reaching $87 million in 2020 earnings, in keeping with Fortune journal. Beyond its DTC web site, Kitsch merchandise are present in over 4,000 shops, together with by Walgreens, CVS, Target and Ulta Beauty, amongst different retailers. Over the previous decade, the privately-owned and self-funded firm has constructed up its personal vertically built-in enterprise mannequin, which incorporates proudly owning its means of achievement and delivery. This enterprise mannequin is extending itself by Kitsch’s inventive facet, with the buy of a property in Malibu in July 2021 as a content material studio and occasion hub.
The L.A.-based model has over 2 million e mail subscribers, with clients concentrated in the Midwest. Approximately 50% of its gross sales are direct-to-consumer, mentioned Cassandra Morales Thurswell, founder and CEO of Kitsch.
“The Kitsch buyer is somebody who’s extraordinary, however who additionally places their underwear on inside out — [they’re] charmingly flawed and relatable,” she mentioned.
She pointed to the Malibu dwelling, known as the “Kitsch Beach House,” as half of an ongoing content material strategy demonstrating the integration of Kitsch merchandise into on a regular basis life and clients’ dwelling environments. The home steadily serves as a backdrop to photoshoots and IG Lives from the model, and as an area to host influencer dinners, occasions and weekend getaways. It will probably host consumer-facing alternatives in the future. Thurswell declined to share the buy worth of the Malibu dwelling. According to actual property itemizing web site Zillow, the common Malibu dwelling worth is presently $3.7 million.
“We need to invite folks in our [influencer] neighborhood who know our merchandise to come back to the home and see how Kitsch suits into their life,” she mentioned. “We don’t need to solely ship merchandise and have them publish it on Instagram. We need them to see what a weekend seems to be like when you will have Kitsch merchandise with you all day.”
Kitsch has 467,000 Instagram followers and works with macro-influencers like Jamie Kidd (@JamienKidd; 830,000 Instagram followers) and micro-influencers like Steph Alleva Cornell (@CreatingSteph; 1,354 Instagram followers). Morales Thurswell mentioned the model works with over 100 influencers at any given time, however declined to share how efficient influencer and affiliate internet marketing are at driving gross sales.
Of course, Kitsch just isn’t the first model to personal a property as an area for content material creation and occasion internet hosting. As far again as 2016, Revolve had a splashy, summer-long activation known as Revolve in the Hamptons, which gathered some of the season’s most outstanding “it” ladies like Hailey Baldwin Bieber and Nicole Richie. Then there have been the plethora of properties and flats that served as content material studios for particular person influencers. More just lately, TikTokers have taken to renting mansions to have the ability to work collectively to create movies. Morales Thurswell mentioned the Kitsch seashore home just isn’t a celebration spot however as an alternative a “reset home,” pointing to the location of Malibu as a respite for climbing, seashore actions and basic unplugging.
“What Kitsch is doing may be very good, particularly as we get again to actual life after quarantine. There are so many variables with regards to in-person experiences. A brand-owned dwelling provides a extra managed surroundings, guaranteeing security and luxury for all,” mentioned Bilal Kaiser, principal of inventive and influencer Agency Guacamole. “[The house] permits a model like Kitsch to supply extra alternatives to attach and nurture relationships with influencers and editors on an ongoing foundation… The draw back to that is that the newness and pleasure might dissipate as influencers are all the time searching for the subsequent new factor.”
Morales Thurswell mentioned she was cautious about talking on the long-term strategy for the Beach House, citing the volatility of occasions of the previous two years. She mentioned that for at least 2022, Kitsch will think about utilizing the home to solidify influencer relationships past the transactional nature of gifting. But she additionally mentioned she felt the alternatives had been “countless.”
“Any model can ship free merchandise [to influencers]. But assembly them face-to-face and creating these alternatives for connection [is important]. Kitsch just isn’t a founder-based model; it’s about our neighborhood and [other] folks speaking about it,” she mentioned.