Beauty brands have been at the fore of digital innovation for years. Among luxury brands, beauty is the vertical most consistently pushing the envelope, particularly on social media platforms like Facebook. Whether it’s a global powerhouse like Lancôme or Estée Lauder or a more modest boutique line like Benefit or Bare Escentuals, beauty brands are pioneers at localized pages and geo-targeted content (graphic at left shows how beauty brands lead the way in both these areas), as well as setting the standard for community engagement. In our recently released 2012 Facebook IQ Index report, not only were six of the top 20 ranked brands from the beauty sector — Lancôme (No. 3), Smashbox (No. 6), Estée Lauder (No. 10), Bare Escentuals (No. 14), Benefit (No. 18) and MAC (No. 18) — but several beauty brand efforts were given special attention in our “Flash of Genius” section. Two of these, one from cosmetics line Bobbi Brown and one from high-end skincare line SK-II, are highlighted below.
In February of this year, Bobbi Brown challenged its 200,000+ Facebook fans to become the next face of Bobbi’s “Pretty Powerful” campaign. With a strong global presence (28 local Facebook pages), the brand presented the contest to more than half of these international pages through like-gated applications that were translated into each country’s native language. Through several rounds, fans submitted before-and-after beauty photos as well as personal anecdotes for the chance to win a trip to New York to meet Bobbi herself. The person with the most votes — on each of the 16 local pages — moved on to the final round. During this last stage of voting, each finalist’s face represented a different country, emphasizing the international popularity of the Bobbi Brown brand. By several metrics, the campaign was a big success. Most impressive was that among those pages that participated in “Pretty Powerful,” their engagement increased, on average, by 31 percent–a 22 percent greater uptick than on those pages that did not participate.
With the highest level of Facebook fan engagement in this year’s index, under-the-radar skincare line SK- II has demonstrated that fostering strong social communities in Asia can reap big rewards. Last year, just prior to the holiday season, the luxury line launched a like-gated “Miracle Maker” app on its Malaysia page. There, fans could post and share “Wishes” with the community, entering to win SK-II products and cash. The response to the app was overwhelming. In an effort to maintain the buzz, during and post-holiday, the brand regularly promoted the app contest on its wall and eventually collected 1,000+ fan wishes. Over the two-month course of the promotion, SK-II experienced a more than two-thirds (68.8 percent) increase in page ‘likes’ and added 29,263 new fans.