How User Generated Content is Changing Beauty Advertising

April 16, 2015 | Blog | By Lightbox

As your standard twenty-something Millennial, it may surprise you to hear that I own a television. Actually, truth be told, the majority of the time I just fast forward through the commercials. The one thing that does get my attention is make up and beauty products. I’m a girlie-girl and I can’t help it. Most of these glamorous products frequently advertise on National TV but how are they reaching me? Keep reading to find out!

Traditionally, mass-market cosmetic brands such as Revlon, Maybelline, and CoverGirl are the top names you see advertised most often on National television. Their ads fall into one the following categories:

  • Celebrity Endorsements – Think easy, breezy, beautiful CoverGirl’s such as Katy Perry and Sofia Vergara.
  • Specific Product Benefits – Most commonly seen are Anti-Aging or a “Natural Look”.
  • New Products – Usually these ads feature product differentiators such as a state of the art mascara wand or a new and improved formula.
  • General – You’ve probably seen Carrie Underwood swaying in the countryside promoting the Almay American Made campaign.

Beyond these advertisements on National Television, cosmetic brands are becoming more and more focused on the online communities. Using YouTube in unique ways, brands are spreading their products like wild fire through special content featuring famous online personalities. These online personalities, aka “YouTube Beauty Gurus”, are the experts that Millennials trust to tell us which red lipstick lasts the longest and which moisturizer is the best in the winter. The strategy of using YouTube attracts not only the digital-savvy Millennials, but also the loyal followers of these Beauty Gurus to the brand’s YouTube channel. For example, CoverGirl features Ingrid Nilsen and Aspyn Ovard – both Beauty & Lifestyle Gurus with over 1 million subscribers each on their personal channels! These YouTubers support CoverGirl in multiple ways: they create content for the official CoverGirl YouTube channel, they feature CoverGirl products on their own personal posts, and they are also ‘Glambassadors’. Glambassadors attend events while speaking of the products they are wearing in support of said brand. This is becoming a huge trend with advertising in the cosmetics industry – reaching audiences through YouTubers, bloggers, and other forms of social media sponsored promotion.

An example of a CoverGirl Special Content Video featuring Ingrid Nilsen

An example of a CoverGirl sponsored post on Ingrid’s personal channel

Let’s take this one step further. Another growing trend in cosmetics advertising is the use of Instagram. In terms of the Beauty Gurus, they are using Instagram as an extension of their own personal brand and as a glimpse into their everyday lives. Their posts can range from the photogenic fruit salad they ate for breakfast to teasers for their most recent videos. Brands themselves are also posting wonderful content on Instagram, because let’s face it – a picture is worth a thousand words. What twenty-something make-up addict doesn’t want to see behind the scenes (#BTS) photos where you catch a glimpse of what goes on at the office of their favorite beauty brands. Or take a look at an event with a celebrity endorser. Between comments and “reposts” Instagram is a great way brands can connect to their followers.

Now what does this have to do with Adspace? Well here’s the thing – we’re in the midst of launching one of our most-fun features to date: “Who We’re Following.” Here we will be featuring influential Instagram users, as well as content from some of our favorite brands on the Smart Screen!

Here at Adspace, we know what Millennials want and how to reach them, and coming from a Millennial herself, this carries some weight. Don’t believe me? Let these numbers speak for themselves: In the past month 64% of Millennials have visited a mall, and Adspace ranks #5 compared to 117 TV Networks in reaching Millennials.

Well that’s it for now! Be sure to check out the Smart Screens, you don’t want to miss “Who We’re Following.”