Hanieh Sigari is an entrepreneur, biochemist, and founder of Qyral, a personalized aging-well skincare and supplement company from LA. The company promotes a personalized relationship with automated skincare.
As the founder/owner of Qyral, Hanieh intends to revolutionize the beauty industry with a groundbreaking range of personalized skincare products. Her dream is to educate others on the secret to living and aging well and empower women to gain financial independence and get ahead through entrepreneurship.
Hanieh’s passion has always been to take care of others. A part-time job in a care home inspired her to begin her own home health business after graduating in biochemistry and gerontology. That first venture inspired Hanieh’s love of entrepreneurship but failed to have the impact she really wanted to make on the world.
She joined her husband’s e-commerce venture, growing the company to a $20M enterprise with multiple international locations, but despite this success, Hanieh felt she had strayed too far from her roots and her desire to make a difference by helping others.
With Qyral, Hanieh has united her passions for the sciences and gerontology with her dream of having a true impact, educating and empowering others. Qyral was inspired by the exaggerated and unreasonable claims made by the beauty industry. We all know there’s no miracle cream that can make someone “appear younger overnight,” however much we might wish there was! However, there is a way to create effective skincare products that really work. In order to have a real impact, we have to unlearn the idea of there only being five skin types (which Hanieh believes is just a trick designed to make it easier to sell products on the mass market) and start treating everyone’s skin as unique — because it is.
Hanieh’s ambitions for Qyral don’t stop at revolutionizing the skincare industry. She also intends to educate others about what it really means to age well, and how to achieve the best possible results, not just for the skin, but for the whole body. And this holistic approach to healthy aging includes empowering others by providing the tools and training to help them succeed through entrepreneurship.
StarCentral Magazine recently caught up with Hanieh to discuss her journey to entrepreneurship and here’s what went down:
What are you currently doing to maintain/grow your business?
What aren’t we doing! We’re really trying it all and trying hard to stay flexible and agile. From TikTok to Instagram Reels, the world of e-commerce and advertising is shifting and changing rapidly, which includes how users interact with brands and content. If COVID has taught us anything, it’s the importance of staying flexible. Right now, we are working hard to invest in our consultants by being guinea pigs, testing various platforms and methods for ourselves so we can build a package we know really works. That way we can deliver our consultants a playbook to guide them in becoming content markers for our brand.
What social media platforms do you usually use to increase your brand’s awareness?
We love to educate so blog posts on Medium and Quora responses have been our primary means of engaging with our audience. As always, technology shifts and moves quickly and the next wave of focus for us will be to educate through the Reels platform on Instagram using short-form videos that are fun, engaging, educational, and made for any demographic (young to old).
What is your experience with paid advertising, like PPC or sponsored content campaigns? Does it work?
PPC works, however it creates a dependency on an external system, mainly Google and Facebook that we can’t control and which can change at any moment, adversely affecting your business. We wanted to have greater control over our marketing spend, therefore we made the strategic decision right from the beginning to avoid paid advertisement as a main source of customer acquisition.
Some paid ads are unavoidable, especially at startup, and we’ve seen success with, for example, boosting Instagram posts to bring wider visibility to the brand. However our overall marketing strategy has been to distribute the money we would have spent on ads back to our consultants, giving them the opportunity to generate wealth and use that expenditure where it can make a real difference, not just add another zero to a billion-dollar corporation’s bank balance.
Affiliates and consultants have the potential to make up to 40% on the sale of every product by advertising through their platforms.
What is your main tactic when it comes to making more people aware of your brand and engaging your customers? How did your business stand out?
Our main tactic for making others aware of our brand is education on longevity and cellular health. In fact, our company motto is “If you interact with our brand and learn something, but buy nothing, then we have done our job.” With so much digital content on health, beauty, and longevity, it’s hard to keep up and sift through what is useful or accurate and what is not. Anyone can start a blog, but consumers need dependable information. That’s why we are committed to providing accurate information that is backed by science and research.
What form of marketing has worked well for your business throughout the years?
If I have learned anything, it’s that a good product or service will sell itself. Organic growth through contests and giveaways, along with word of mouth, has been our number one growth factor, followed by content made and generated by our consultants and users.
What is the toughest decision you had to make in the last few months?
The toughest decision we had to make was to temporarily abandon the idea of introducing our telehealth services and prescription-grade personalized skincare products in order to focus on perfecting our non-prescription grade topical solutions. Of course, we will eventually roll out the prescription-grade solutions, but for now, perfecting our personalized products is key.
What money mistakes have you made along the way that others can learn from (or something you’d do differently)?
We made the money mistake of thinking we could do something ourselves when we needed to hire a professional. Whether it was hiring a design team to bring our product and website design to fruition, or hiring the right consulting firms to guide us on certain business strategies or solutions. They were able to do it much better than I ever could, in half the time!
What new business would you love to start?
It’s hard to say what business I would love to start when my dream business is the one I’m running right now! I believe Qyral has an infinite amount of potential, especially once we incorporate our telehealth services. We are the first personalized skincare brand in the network marketing space. Once we add telehealth and personalized prescription-grade products, we’ll have an even greater advantage over other competitors. I also want to continue our philanthropic giving. So to answer the question, I’m already in the business I love!
If you could go back in a time machine to the time when you were just getting started, what would you do differently?
I wish I would have doubted myself less and stuck with my gut instincts. I wouldn’t have wasted so much time. However, I’d like to think that everything is a learning experience for something greater and better, so who knows, maybe I needed to wander and dabble to be here or go even further.
What is the best advice you have ever been given?
If you have a dream, don’t let anyone talk you out of it. Stick with it no matter what! We live in an instant gratification world where everyone expects immediate results — from swipes on dating apps to plastic surgery, or the millions of products we can order and have shown up at our door in 1-2 days. Never before in history have we had so many options, and the paradox of choice can be overwhelming. Good things take time, patience, persistence, conviction, and deliberate focus. I can’t think of a single person I admire who hasn’t spent a lot of time and effort on their craft. Give yourself five years on average. Malcolm Gladwell calls it the “10,000-hour rule,” but it’s just really the time it takes for ambitions to come to fruition. Stick with it and success will surely ensue.
What advice would you give to a newbie Entrepreneur setting up their first business?
There is absolutely no such thing as FAILURE! Get that word out of your vocabulary.
You don’t fail — you either pivot, give up or learn important lessons you can build on. Also, a (cliche, but very important) piece of advice is to figure out your real “why.” If money is your only source of motivation, you will be left empty, craving more. But if you focus on impact and purpose, an abundance of opportunities will show up. For me, I was in stealth mode, developing my business for almost three years. If my “why” wasn’t the impact I want to have, both in the field of aging and through the empowerment of women, I would probably have given up after six months.