A salon app creator knew exactly who she wanted to help her business. But she didn't know how to reach him. Enter one timely Facebook post.
Kathleen Jennings' BeautyNow app, created in 2013, helps book appointments for blowouts, manicures and massages. Jennings was based in Houston and signing up salons and spas in Texas. But she wanted help to grow her business nationwide.
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She had certain expectations for an investor — someone "who was also a brand name in the beauty industry and would bring instant validation, connections, marketing expertise and distribution channels."
She thought John Paul DeJoria would be a good match because of his connections. He is the co-founder and chairman of John Paul Mitchell Systems, which has products in more than 100,000 salons in the U.S.
She wasn't sure how to reach him, however.
"I did not consider contacting John Paul directly. I knew someone at his level is inundated with requests," Jennings says.
Instead, she tried her luck on Facebook. In a post, she asked her friends if any of them would be able to get her in touch with DeJoria.
It worked. A mutual friend got her a phone call. She prepared by perfecting her pitch and researching DeJoria.
"Basically if it has been written about him on the Internet, I know it," she says.
DeJoria became a BeautyNow investor and adviser. In an emailed statement, DeJoria says he's excited to work with BeautyNow on new products and marketing.
Jennings won't disclose how many consumers use the app or its sales, but it now works with more than 5,000 salons and spas across the country.