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The appeal of cosmetic products for the millennial consumer lies in the fact that they are relatively accessible goods in monetary terms, and only last for several months of use before the product runs out, keeping consumers constantly on the lookout for the next beauty must-have.
Here are 5 successful examples of how cosmetic brands have capitalized on this social media marketing trend and influencer marketing to generate hype and boost sales.
1. ColourPop x Jenn Im
Of clothesencounters Youtube fame, Jenn Im is a fashion influencer who produces fashion, make-up, and lifestyle video content weekly.
With her quirky personality and fashion-forward style, Jenn Im has amassed more than 1.7 million loyal subscribers on her Youtube channel, and more than 1.3 million subscribers on her Instagram account.
Jenn Im’s collaboration with ColourPop Cosmetics features vibrantly coloured lipsticks and playful eye shimmers that are reflective of her cheerful personality.
The eyeshadow quad from the collection is affectionately named “Jenn Ne Sais Quoi”, while two of her lip products are named “Jenneration X” and “Dohee”, Jenn’s Korean name, respectively.
Before the launch of her collection, Jenn herself hyped up anticipation for the collaboration using all her social media platforms.
Even the launch party was well attended by many of her influencer friends who vlogged footage and uploaded it to their own channels.
Other beauty vloggers too created beauty tutorials using products from Jenn’s collection, with several of them listing “Dohee” in their monthly favourites, helping to affirm that it was a good quality product with high colour pay-off.
The collection was well-received by many of Jenn’s followers, several of whom took to Twitter to express how excited they were to receive their products.
2. Becca x Jaclyn Hill
A photo posted by J A C L Y N ? (@jaclynhill) on May 25, 2016 at 6:24pm PDT
With over 3 million Youtube subscribers, Jaclyn Hill is a professional makeup artist from Florida who produces beauty related content on her channel.
Known as a “glimmering goddess” for her artist sculpted cheekbones and on point highlight, Jaclyn Hill sure knows her makeup.
Becca and Hill first collaborated in 2015 to release a limited edition highlighter known as “Champagne Pop”. The product was widely popular because of its proclaimed suitability towards a wide variety of skin tones.
Girls everywhere hoping to achieve Jaclyn Hill’s signature highlighted look flocked to their nearest Sephora counters to pick up the product.
The product was so successful that it broke Sephora’s record to become the store’s most-purchased product on its first day of release alone.
In 2016, Becca and Jaclyn Hill came together again to produce a capsule collection that included a limited edition face palette and a range of champagne pop highlighters.
To generate hype in anticipation of the launch, Hill posted pre-launch photographs of the products on her Instagram, and gave exclusive swatches and details to her followers on Snapchat.
The collaboration between Becca and Jaclyn Hill doesn’t look it’s going to end any time soon.
Just today (2 July, 2016), Hill posted pictures of a new blush-highlight duo on her Instagram, telling followers to sign up for email updates regarding the release of this new product.
3. Tarte Cosmetics x Grav3yardGirl
Bunny Meyer, more widely known by her Youtube handle, Grav3yardGirl, is a Youtube sensation with over 7 million subscribers and more than a billion views on all her Youtube videos collectively.
Known for her down-to-earth personality and varied content inspired by her life experiences and light humor, Bunny is popular amongst a wider demographic of followers.
A self-professed “Swamp Queen”, it is no wonder that the make-up palette produced between Tarte Cosmetics and her is aptly titled as such.
To let her followers know about her upcoming make-up collection, Meyer posted a sneak peek of the palette's packaging on her Instagram, affectionately addressing it towards her loyal “SWAMP FAM!”
Social media personalities like Meyer constantly share their personal experiences and life stories with their followers, always letting their followers know how important they are to them.
Followers are thus made to feel like friends to these social media influencers, and who wouldn’t like to support a friend in their new endeavor?
Products from the collection sold out at Sephora stores but were promptly restocked, with Meyer herself keeping her fans up to date with the latest information of course.
4. Makeup Geek x MannyMUA
MannyMUA is a male beauty vlogger who believes that makeup is genderless and hopes to fight for equality between men and women when it comes to all things makeup.
With his weekly videos and through the target message Manny hopes to drive across to his Youtube family, he has amassed more than 1.3 million subscribers on his channel.
Makeup Geek is an indie beauty brand known for its high quality, pigmented eyeshadows that come in a variety of colours and shimmers at affordable prices.
How the idea for the collaboration first started was when Manny first raved about the Makeup Geek eyeshadows on his channel, and how it would be a dream if he could one day collaborate with the brand to create a palette of his own.
Makeup Geek definitely picked up on this comment because the brand then approached Manny to do a collaboration and the rest of course is history.
When the palette first launched, it sold out within 20 minutes.
According to Manny, “This palette can be worn by anyone and everyone regardless of age or race — I wanted to make sure of that! I worked hard on this palette and couldn’t be happier with the results!”
5. Too Faced x NikkieTutorials
NikkieTutorials is a 22 year-old Beauty YouTuber from the Netherlands with close to 4 million subscribers on her YouTube channel.
Known for her constantly on trend make-up tutorials and ability to make any makeup look on fleek, NikkieTutorials is the go-to beauty source for many millennial female consumers who take her beauty advice very seriously.
Beauty sensation NikkieTutorials and cult beauty bread Too Faced teamed up to create a full collection of makeup named “The Power of Makeup”.
The collection just launched and we are willing to bet our money’s worth that this too will take the beauty world by storm, judging from the number of articles and tweets we’ve seen online talking about how exciting the collaboration is going to be.
To generate hype for the launch, Too Faced Co-Founder Jerrod Blandino himself uploaded a shot of the packaging from the collaboration on his Instagram, to the ooohs and aaahs of thousands of commenters.
On May 26, Nikkie took to her Snapchat to show her followers exclusive sneak peeks of the products in the collection, inclusive of swatches and product information.
Judging from the dedicated hashtag to the collaboration, #nikkie4toofaced, this collaboration will sell out at Sephora stores faster than we can say “Too Faced x Nikkie Tutorials”.
Conclusion: Social media influencers have become a mainstay in the marketing industry.
By constantly sharing not just their beauty and lifestyle advice, but also their personal experiences and life stories, these social media influencers make themselves relatable to their millions of followers, and interact with them like friends.
This personal touch makes consumers feel more involved in the lives of these influencers that they respect and look up to, and this is exactly what drives consumers to want to purchase makeup products recommended or produced by these influencers.
Consumers trust that these makeup maestros know their stuff, and to them, it’s almost like getting makeup advice and tips from a friend, or supporting a friend in their passion!