How prescient for a guy who never heard of Instagram or Tik-Tok.
The consumer-led nature of social media continues to have a significant impact on the beauty category. Social media once amplified the latest beauty trend and educated via tips and tricks about how to achieve it. Now, these trends are born on these platforms. While brands traditionally tapped into Influencers and Micro Influencers for authentic content, today we see beauty and fashion subcultures emerging like VSCO girls and E-girls, who are gaining massive influence.
An August 3 New York Times article highlighted the social media phenomenon around VSCO, a video editing app that has become a “thing” thanks to influencers, such as VSCO girls, who use the app to post videos to Instagram and Tik-Tok. The article cites one fashion brand, Pura Vida, a maker of inexpensive stackable bracelets, who leveraged the VSCO-girl that resulted in a photo that had six times as much engagement as the company’s average post.
Bottom line: People see it, get excited by it, buy it and share it. Whether you like it or not, co-creation between brands, influencers and consumers is here to stay and it is a powerful way to expand your brand and reach on social media.
But really affecting someone’s purchase decisions takes more than wishful thinking that a particular influencer will make a video spotlighting your product that then goes viral and leads to a groundswell of attention and sales. The truth is the smart brands take a holistic approach—orchestrating seamless connections across advertising, shopper, consumer promotion, social, PR and digital engagements. Social plays a key role in amplifying these efforts within a brand’s marketing ecosystem. Brands that take a wider view and create synergies across activations enjoy a multiplier effect from their efforts.
Consider the benefits Covergirl has reaped in recent years with its holistic approach to messaging surrounding social issues; specifically, the decision to become Leaping Bunny certified by Cruelty Free International, as well as its decision to lead on LGBTQ issues with transgender models and positive messages about universal beauty and self-expression.
Both are clearly points of pride for Covergirl and are rooted in a deeply felt social responsibility—people can sniff out inauthenticity in a New York minute—but equally as impressive from a marketing standpoint is how well Covergirl integrated those efforts across marketing channels from broadcast to packaging to print and outdoor. Perhaps most notably, was how Covergirl facilitated this conversation with consumers in social.
Another good example of a social-centered marketing approach is Glossier. The online retailer has found a perfect balance between the right products, modeled on real but aspirational people, creating an authentic shopping experience. You have to love how Glossier creates stories with products that draw in viewers in a powerful way.
If Warhol were here today he might have modified his quote ever so slightly—“I never read, I just look at videos on social media.”
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