PROCUREMENT

Beauty Brands Get Up-Close and Personal with D2C Marketing

Feb 17, 2021

Social Commerce

Beauty Brands Get Up-Close and Personal with D2C Marketing

For years now, YouTube and Instagram have been the go-to social media platforms for beauty lovers and brands. Both platforms provide brands with a means of increasing their reach with ease through the use of influencers and other community-building tactics. Many consumers actively look to social media to discover new beauty products and brands, so it is no surprise that beauty brands continue to spend more and more on their digital marketing methods. However, as with any industry, social media is constantly evolving with new platforms gaining popularity every year. Over the past couple of years, we’ve seen a dramatic increase in popularity for TikTok, Twitch, and Amazon Live within the beauty community. 

These three platforms allow influencers to react to their followers and audiences significantly quicker than Instagram or YouTube as they allow for more natural, unedited content. This has helped these influencers develop extraordinarily close and trusting relationships with their followers; which, unsurprisingly, is a great asset for beauty brands wanting to target a new platform and audience. 

Twitch

Twitch is the world’s leading live streaming platform and is primarily used by gaming live-streamers. However, over the past year, we have seen fashion and beauty brands alike begin using Twitch for fashion shows or product launches and promotions.  In September 2020, Burberry live-streamed its SS21 London Fashion Show on Twitch and was hosted by Erykah Badu, Rosalia, Steve Lacy, and Bella Hadid. The hour-long show achieved 42,000 concurrent viewers. 

In addition, Michelle Phan (who is credited to be the “original” YouTube beauty guru) began using Twitch in 2020 to promote her beauty line. She launched a new foundation product during a live stream where she played League of Legends. During the stream, Phan had programmed bots to add links-to-purchase in the chat, while the ad for the new foundation played in breaks. The choice to promote and launch on Twitch proved successful in driving sales, as the foundation sold 278% more units on launch day compared to previous launches, and nearly 50% of traffic for the brand’s site that day was generated from the Livestream. 

The appeal for Twitch comes from the ability to easily and authentically interact with viewers. Brands and influencers are able to talk about products in a more authentic way and respond to viewers’ questions in the moment. Twitch allows influencers and brands to be involved within their community, rather than just viewers chatting together. In addition to this, the customizable ad bots mean influencers and brands can direct their audiences to specific products or websites, creating a seamless buying experience.

TikTok

TikTok’s popularity soared throughout the pandemic, and we have seen numerous beauty brands, both designer and high-street, take to TikTok to promote their products. Initially, brands began trending on TikTok due to organic content created by influencers who shared beauty tips and tricks with their audiences (for example, The Ordinary’s Peeling Solution). To keep this success going, brands began using popular TikTok creators, creating their own content, or paying for ad spaces within the app.   

Brands that use TikTok are creating opportunities to reach a global audience. The app is available in 150 countries and has 1 billion monthly active users, 34% of whom upload content daily. The content created on TikTok is quick, creative, and authentic. Due to the nature of the videos, brands and content creators are able to quickly respond to trends and can update their followers with news or promotions incredibly quickly. Many have created their own TikTok filters or hashtag campaigns, where paid and unpaid creators can create content within. 

Revolution Beauty launched a challenge in December under the hashtag #iamforeverflawless, where TikTok creators were encouraged to share their creations using the brand’s Forever Flawless palettes. The brand also created its own custom sound which has nearly 1,000 videos using it. 

The brand sponsored popular TikTok beauty creators to begin the trend before general TikTok users began creating their own content. Videos included full glam transformations as well as “get unready with me” videos. The dedicated hashtag has amassed over 1.8 billion views since it began. 

TikTok allows brands to experiment with challenges and trends in a lighthearted and creative way. It helps create a sense of community for the brand, and influencers using products on the app has proven to be a great use of influencer marketing. Brands are able to track user-generated content with ease and can see how much website traffic comes from TikTok. They can respond quickly to TikTok trends by creating content themselves or re-posting user-generated content. 

Amazon Live

Through the pandemic, we have seen multiple beauty brands begin using Amazon Live. The appeal comes from the shoppable Livestream format, which includes a live carousel under the video. This carousel contains all the products discussed in the Live, and customers can click and purchase any instantly. 

Beauty brands have used celebrities and popular influencers to attract viewers, alongside special discounts. We have seen Neutrogena host an Amazon Live series called Glow at Home, where popular influencers explained and demonstrated various skincare products. 

Furthermore, NYX Professional Makeup hosted a Livestream with beauty influencer Karen Gonzalez, who created an autumnal makeup tutorial using the brand’s products. The use of Amazon Live allows brands to create engaging content that directly supports learning and connecting to multiple audiences from various backgrounds. Brands using the feature can directly direct customers to their Amazon store or to specific products available to purchase on Amazon. In doing so, they can track the conversion rates of viewers to customers. 

Amazon Live has developed into its own social platform quickly, with some beauty streamers already having a good following. Carla Stevenné, of Beauty by Carla, streams two to three times a week and is able to earn affiliate revenue through purchases made during her live streams. 

Brands can use Amazon Live and Amazon’s influencers as a standalone marketing tool, or to support their wider marketing efforts and goals. They can promote their live streams on other social channels, which creates a full online ecosystem and smooth customer journey. 

The Takeouts

With consumers moving online, the competition for their attention is tougher than ever before. A way to gain this attention is to adjust your brand’s strategy to be more direct. While Instagram and YouTube will undoubtedly remain a great way to create content, the three rising platforms allow quicker, authentic, and creative responses to audiences. In addition, they provide metrics and conversions that are easier to track. Twitch and Amazon Live both provide click-through affiliate links to products or storefronts, while TikTok allows brands to track customer trends through user-generated content. 

The main perk is the ease at which these platforms help nurture your brand’s community. With live streams, you or an influencer is able to immediately respond to customer questions, and TikTok content is significantly more natural and authentic than the content on Instagram or YouTube. Fully utilizing all these platforms help brands make a seamless customer buying journey, something that is vital in order to stay relevant online these days.

Our Influencer marketing agency and Social agency are located worldwide, with our agency network based in the USA, UK, UAE and China.

If you want to receive our industry insights, visit our Influencer Marketing & Social Media blogs here.

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Author

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James Hacking

Writer

Socially Powerful, founded in 2017, stood as pioneers of the influencer marketing industry. Today we are a global social marketing agency and technology company.

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