Turning queens into junkies – how the beauty industry is using social media to captivate its audience

Beauty fanatics have been around a long time. From the days of American soldiers queuing outside Coco Chanel’s Parisian boutique at the end of WW2 to take home a bottle of No. 5, to Maybelline’s Great Lash Mascara still managing to sell one tube every 1.7 seconds in the US alone – obsessing over beauty is a global trend.
It’s the intrinsic nature of the 6.6 million beauty Enthusiasts in the UK that makes the social media revolution and its platforms a great way to take your conversation with customers to a whole new level and, even more importantly, get your followers positively influencing others.
Mintel’s latest industry report, “Social Media: Beauty and Personal Care” published earlier in April this year, highlights some key findings. Brits are increasingly using the internet to research beauty products before purchase, with social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter informing purchase decisions on beauty products for 34% of would-be buyers. It also reports that Facebook is the preferred vehicle to express thoughts or opinions on beauty brands when online and almost two-thirds of those who have contacted a brand via Facebook have become a fan or ‘liked’ the brand.There is a great case study on beauty powerhouse Sephora – here – which shares how, through social media platforms Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest – combined with a web re-design – they managed to increase mobile shopping by 300% and boost iPad traffic by 400% in one quarter. This is a beauty brand that knows its audience and is using customer engagement to the fullest.

Social media is giving beauty brands a great opportunity to maximise the power of key purchasing factors in the industry, including word-of-mouth recommendations, sharing tips and advice, providing customers with a sounding board and the ability to share and discover inspiration from other users.
This is an audience who wants to talk – so make sure that you’re listening.


Social Media: Beauty and Personal Care – April 2012, Mintel

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