For over fifty years, Mary Kay, Inc. has been empowering women around the world to make a difference in their community, conveying this message with an over three million-strong corps of Independent Beauty Consultants. This decentralized business model poses unique challenges for Mary Kay, Inc. CMO Sheryl Adkins-Green, who has to create marketing plans that appeal not just to Mary Kay customers, but also to the people who sell Mary Kay products.

Even though Adkins-Green says that “the ultimate influencer is the Independent Beauty Consultant herself, and this is consistent with how Mary Kay began this business,” she doesn’t intend for her consultants to do all the work. In fact, between standardizing global messaging and breaking the world record for the highest number of makeovers, Adkins-Green and her marketing team have excelled in reaching out to women from all walks of life. But how do you manage and market such a decentralized brand? According to Adkins-Green, the keys to success lie in letting the consultants personalize the brand, instilling company pride and integrating customer loyalty deep into the company itself.

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