Photo above: Conan O’Brien greets enthusiastic employees at Mary Kay headquarters in Addison, Texas, while filming a Mary Kay segment for his talk show. (Photo Credit: Meghan Sinclair/ Team Coco)
While taping his popular late-night talk show in Dallas last week, Conan O’Brien made a stop at the Mary Kay headquarters to realize his dream of becoming an Independent Beauty Consultant.
In the ensuing segment, the comedian undergoes corporate training, dons a black beauty coat and heads to a party in a signature pink SUV, while shouting out the window, “I’m off to sell cosmetics!”
Conan generated that same enthusiasm throughout the taping, observed Pio del Castillo, Manager of Corporate Communications at Mary Kay. When the show’s producers first reached out to Mary Kay, Castillo saw an opportunity for the brand to approach a relatively untapped market. Conan’s viewership skews female and younger than Mary Kay’s established base of consultants.
“It was also an opportunity to be a little more relaxed about the brand,” Castillo told DSN. “We helped them a lot and were very happy working with them.”
After some back-and-forth on a concept, Castillo’s team went several weeks without further communication from the show. Then a call came through late Friday afternoon. The segment was a go, and they wanted to film Monday morning.
“Everyone got on board quickly,” said Castillo. “We had done our homework.”
The team even compiled 1,700 gift bags stuffed with Mary Kay products—for men and women—to distribute to Conan’s audience when the segment aired the following day at the Majestic Theater.
The experience was a positive one for Mary Kay, Castillo said, calling Conan’s producers the “best and nicest” he has encountered in 20 years of experience. To close out the segment, Conan greeted an enthusiastic crowd of employees in the Mary Kay lobby—where he led a chant of “Mary Kay! Mary Kay!”—and took the time to say hello to each fan.
The response from Mary Kay’s salesforce has also been overwhelmingly positive. Asked how his team is going to follow up on the Conan segment, Castillo says with a laugh, “Jimmy Fallon, Oprah—why not?”