Within 18 months, frank body had hundreds of thousands of fans on social media, and distribution centres across the globe, making it one of the fastest (and most successful) startups in the country.
With this in mind, when the opportunity came up to chat exclusively with one of the co-founders, we jumped at the chance.
Here, Erika Geraerts shares her secrets to success, best advice she’s ever received and what to expect from frank in the future.
What inspired you to start frank body?
Bree, Jess, Steve, Alex and myself had been looking to launch a product online for quite some time. Our experienced was varied but we saw potential to utilise social media in advertising to a young female demographic, particularly in the health, fitness and beauty space.
The product itself was discovered when Steve, who owned several cafes in Melbourne at the time, had two women continually come in and ask for the leftover coffee grinds to use as a body exfoliator. When we did research on coffee scrubs we found that they were in fact a DIY recipe for treating skin conditions like cellulite, stretch marks, acne, and psoriasis, but no brand had packaged them up cleverly and marketed it online.
We made the product ourselves using fresh coffee grinds, by hand and tried it out – and our skin felt amazing. The boys led production and logistics while Bree, Jess and myself worked on the brand name, tone of voice and social strategy.
What do you think is the secret to your success?
Hard work, relationships, and a little bit of luck. We entered the market at the right time and right place, with the right product, and our research and brand development and execution was all based around our customer’s profile and needs. This continues to evolve today.
What does a typical workday look like?
A million emails and meetings across our businesses, frank body and Willow & Blake. Whether we’re meeting new clients, workshopping a tone of voice and social media strategy, editing copy, deciding on new product launches, rolling out campaigns regionally, or assessing the results our customers get from using our products.
What has been the best advice you’ve ever been given?
#1 If you don’t ask the answer will always be no.
#2 The world is full of assholes, including you.
#3 Be kind.
What are your top three tips for someone who is looking to start their own business?
#1 Choose your business partners carefully.
#2 Risk it for the biscuit.
#3 Do your research.
What would you say is the best and worst part of your job?
Best: claiming beauty products as research. Drinking wine, beer and whisky as research.
Worst: A never-ending influx of emails, messages, meetings and deadlines.
Who do you look up to and admire?
Baddie Winkle. Going out with a bang.
How important for you is it to have vegan products? Why?
Our scrubs are 100% vegan and our face range uses ethically sourced beeswax. Our ingredient philosophy is informed by both our customers needs and wants and our company values.
What is your favourite product from the range? Why?
E: Coffee-based body balm
B: Coffee-based lip balm
J: Cacao Body Scrub
What’s next for Frank Body?
Maybe you’ll see a new product in a new place. Stay tuned on snapchat: frankbod and Instagram @frank_bod
First thing I do in the morning:
Check phone. Check sky. Exercise. Coffee. Go to work.
Last thing I do at night:
Write down three things: something that worked, something we learnt, and something we noticed.
Workout I’m currently obsessed with:
Boxing, Yoga, Meditation, Running.
Most people probably don’t know this about me, but:
We like quiet.
My coffee of choice is:
E: Long Black
J: double espresso
B: 3/4 latte
If I were a fruit or vegetable I’d be:
E: Brussell Sprout
If sugar were a superfood, my diet would consist of:
I never leave home without:
A place to be.
I’m inspired by:
Each other’s heads.
My favourite emoji is:
My pet peeve is:
Frank Body is involved in Architects of Beauty at Highpoint (6-22 May).
Enjoy 15 inspiring beauty workshops and masterclasses, book your place now via www.highpoint.com.au