Balm Chicky Balm Balm. Just say the words, and people of a certain generation get images of over the top, 1970's porn movie soundtracks. This is just the vibe entrepreneurs Liz Moskow and Abby Schwalb are going for with their sharable lip balm that they pitch in episode 616. Their entire brand is based on double entendre, 1970's, free love sexuality.
The hook with Balm Chicky lip balm is what they call the “friend end.” Basically, one end of the lip balm is like any other product out there; the friend end flips open so a friend can grab a gob of lip balm with a finger without contaminating the “personal” end. The packaging is patented.
The lip balm flavors evoke more of the sexual branding the Balm Chicky gals are going for: Juicy Melons, Sweet Baby Ginger, Huge Cucumber, Wild Mountain Honey, and Chocolate Love. Each flavor has graphics with a definitively 1970's look that glorifies the pornish double entendre of the flavor's title. Their package deals allow you to bundle three flavors (for a reduced price) in the menage a trois or five flavors in the flavor orgy.
The Balm Chicky gals have certainly achieved the off color branding they set out to create. With tongue firmly in cheek (I hope), the women found a way to use the best sales tool ever invented (sex) to sell a very ubiquitous product (lip balm). The product is available in over 50 retail locations nationwide (including all of Hustler Hollywood‘s Stores) and online. They are likely looking for a Shark's help for cash to fund orders and/or help with broader distribution. Whether their unique and patented packaging, coupled with their steamy and off-beat branding nets a Shark remains to be seen.
My Take on Balm Chicky Lip Balm
When I first read the press release announcing Balm Chicky Balm Balm, I found myself verbalizing the name in my head over and over. I think that's their intent and it's seedy genius. Using this product is a way to be a little bit naughty while protecting chapped lips. I'm not sure if this product will have a life other than as a novelty item, but I admire the Balm Chicky gals' irreverence and inventive branding. How can you NOT admire a woman (Mosckow) who says she likes “to jump my man's bones” to de-stress after a long day?
Sex and double entendres aside, the Balm Chicky gals are having fun with their business. It appears they have good initial market (no pun intended) penetration and a loyal following of naughty fans. What they really have going for them is the packaging. It's patented and it is functional, even without all the grimy 1970's porn references. The ladies must think so too: they've rolled out some “less porntastic” packaging, probably to appeal to a broader audience. I think they have a winner. Balm Chicky Balm Balm!
Will Sharks Like the Friend End?
This pitch promises to be entertaining, and I am sure the Sharks will have some double entendres of their own, but the discussion and interest from the Sharks will likely focus on the packaging, not the brand. Even with all the Sharks capable of getting consumer products into national chains, I am not sure the Balm Chicky brand and flavors like Huge Cucumber would go over well in WalGreens.
The Sharks are going to like the patented packaging. Kevin will want to license it to every lip balm manufacturer on the face of the earth. Mark or Barbara could get involved as they already have lip balm products in their Shark Tank portfolios (Kisstixx, Nardo's Natural). Either one of them could merge the packaging to their brands while still retaining the Balm Chicky branding.
I don't think Lori would want to be singing “Balm Chicky Balm Balm” on QVC, so I don't think she bids. Robert likely sits out, too. Mark, Kevin, or Barbara are the only Sharks that should be interested, but I'm not sure they'll do a deal. Whatever happens, a lot of people are going to be repeating the company name on Tuesday night!