Rapid NPD: CTK Cosmetics’ new digital platform enables contactless collaboration for beauty brands
Launched at the beginning of March, CLIP allows the company to collaborate with beauty brands on new products through a contactless digital experience.
“[CLIP] is a digital platform for you to create your own beauty products, which is incredibly fun and amazing. The idea is that you can go into the platform and get inspired by all the different things we have done,” said Chirstine Ansari, VP EMEA division, CTK Cosmetics.
The platform will look familiar to anyone who has browsed through Pinterest, except with listings of cosmetic packaging solutions, ingredients and product concepts. Currently, the platform has over 5000 listings, and the company is aiming to add 30 to 50 new listings every month.
Customers will be able to ‘clip’ any of the listings in the virtual showroom and simply send a request with a click of a button.
“Our goal is to empower our clients and inspire them to create endlessly virtually via CLIP at their fingertips without any physical constraints,” Shane Lee, director full-service division, CTK.
Furthermore, the platform’s internal structure has been reinforced to enable quick response, allowing brands to speed up product development.
For instance, inquiries are sent to the new product development team and the customer can expect to be connected with the CTK team within 24 hours and products can be ready in just a few months.
“Speed to market is extremely important in this current climate. Yes, we're having an unusual business moment because of COVID-19, but I think at the end of the day there is a lot of business happening,” said Ansari.
The CLIP platform would allow it to connect with more independent or emerging beauty brands, which is a point of focus for the company.
“We are not discerning, we don't just work with big global brands for giant quantities, we love to work with small independent brands as well. We've always seen ourselves as a real nurturer for small brands,” said Ansari.
As CLIP is an open platform, it would expose the company’s many innovative concepts to competitors. However, the company seemed unfazed by any copycat attempts that may happen, emphasising that its true strength was its expertise in the market.
“It shows the confidence in the company, the confidence we have in our ability. Taking ideas – that’s happening all over the place. But people understand that we are super reliable and there’s still a lot more behind CLIP that’s going on,” said Ansari.
Since 2019, the company had been on a path to digitalise its business. This need was brought to the forefront when the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted businesses and economies globally.
“We saw how the COVID-19 crisis brought about years of change in the way companies in all sectors and regions do business,” said Choi Cheeho, VP full-service division, CTK.
Choi said the firm accelerated its digital transformation to be able to react in a more agile manner and stay competitive in the new business and economy environment.
In July 2020, the company began developing the CLIP platform and was able to get it up and running in seven months.
“We have been working on a more convenient way to develop products from the customer’s point-of-view and we have been focused on digitising the development of cosmetics. This process was accelerated by the current world situation, so when Korea went on lockdown last year, we kicked this project into high gear,” said Lee.
With CLIP, the company intends to build its global reach and expand its influence in Europe, the Middle East and China.
Moving forward, it will be adding new features to the platform, such as a customisation tool, which is expected to hit the platform in April.