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#BBMoment: 3 Successful Brand Stories in Response to COVID

Akta Bavalia

During Covid-19, the majority of the global industries took a hard hit as the world came to a standstill; stores closed down, production and manufacturing paused and sales decreased. The beauty industry, in particular, was heavily affected according to our latest report Marketing Reset: A Data Snapshot of the Beauty Industry, suffering the highest year-on-year decrease during the first trimesters of 2019 and 2020 (-17% in Media Impact ValueTM). During the lockdown period, as retail stores faced temporary closure and the primary way of communicating with the outside world shifted to digital platforms, brands were forced to rethink their strategies and how they connect with their consumers in order to adapt to the new normal, and the change in consumer demands.

When looking specifically at the beauty industry data, the luxury segment saw an increase in MIV® of 9% while mass-market and premium beauty decreased by 8% and 29% respectively, highlighting the impact for premium brands. However, despite the decline, when breaking it down brand-by-brand there were a large handful of companies that continued to see positive growth throughout the first trimester in comparison to 2019. We saw a large number of brands launching campaigns and initiatives that provided consumers with educational and reliable content to keep them entertained during the crisis, as well as allow them to be self-sufficient whilst they took up at-home beauty treatments.

In our most recent #BBMoment, we take a look at some of the highlights of Nivea, KKW Beauty, and Clarins’ strategy and what they did during these unprecedented times that helped continue to drive brand performance.

#BBMoment: 3 Successful Brand Stories in Response to COVID

Luxury Beauty – Clarins

Throughout the first trimester of 2020, Clarins’ Media Impact ValueTM saw an evolution of 34% YoY, generating a total of $41.4M in MIV®. In particular, during the months of March and April, not only did the brand gain a lot of momentum from top tier publications that focused on the brand’s decision to use their production factories to produce hand sanitizers to donate to hospitals in France, but @clarinsofficial Instagram account also launched a #StayHomeWithClarins campaign. This involved a series of wellness and beauty content with pro-consumers such as their employees and industry professionals, sharing tips, tutorials, and feel-good rituals on topics that consumers could relate to. An example of this was an exercise to allow your eyes rest & recharge from those who suffer from ‘screen fatigue’. 

In addition to this, although overall the Influencer Voice for the beauty industry decreased significantly, Clarins successfully leveraged Mega and Mid-Tier Influencers through their Owned Media channels to drive further impact and provide their customers with value-adding content. Collectively, both influencer tiers accounted for 78% of the Influencer Voice. The beauty brand invested in IG Lives with these key opinion leaders as a way of providing product reviews and recommendations but in particular, the results of their ‘28-day serum challenge’.

Premium Beauty – KKW Beauty

As previously mentioned, the brands within the premium beauty sector suffered significantly more with respect to luxury and mass-market beauty. However, KKW Beauty was one of a few names that saw a spike in MIV®. The brand generated a total of $71.3M in Media Impact ValueTM during the first trimester of the year – a 32% growth from 2019 to 2020. Looking at the data, KKW beauty, owned by Kim Kardashian, had an average MIV® per post of $46K which is one of the highest averages for a premium beauty brand. The majority of the top posts in our KKW Beauty analysis came from Kim herself, with the number one post generating $1.1M in MIV®. The Instagram video featured a step-by-step guide of her work from a sneak peek at her home beauty routine using KKW products only. This not only provides a real testimonial from the founder of the beauty line but also demonstrates how valuable leveraging the face behind the brand can be, and in this current landscape fans really look to ‘real’ content provided by these authoritative figures. 

Mass Market – Nivea 

As a segment, mass-market beauty saw a decrease of 8% YoY, but a brand that was really able to capitalize was Nivea. During the first trimester the brand’s MIV® increased by 22% in comparison to 2019, however, when we look closer, the data indicates that during April Nivea drove the most value, with an increase of 78% YoY. Whilst the majority of mass-market brands opted to leverage their owned media channels during the pandemic, Nivea drove a phenomenal 26% by leveraging their longstanding partnership with the football club, Real Madrid, which was a key driver in their evolution during the month of April. To put that into perspective, the industry segment average for Partners is 3%.

Real Madrid created content that generated awareness for the beauty brand through entertaining and engaging posts for fans of the football club. The top post for Nivea – the second top post overall for this segment during April 2020 – generated a total of $826K in MIV® and was a competition posted on Real Madrid’s Instagram, encouraging fans to send in their current T-shirt collection in order to not only win an official t-shirt but also a selection of Nivea products. Understanding that consumer interests had shifted to entertaining content whilst in lockdown, this initiative proved to be extremely successful for the brand as it also allowed them to engage with a wider audience through Real Madrid.

As the markets continue to recover, what will be key for brands is to closely monitor the changing behaviors and values of consumers, otherwise, they will risk alienating those that are already loyal to the brand. Moreover, the beauty industry will need to consider implementing creative campaigns and initiatives that align with values that are at the core of each individual consumer but also the brand itself, if they are to maintain a positive outlook on how their image is perceived. Ultimately, those who understand that this recovery period is not a short-term process but rather long-term, will be the brands that we see build brand equity.

For further analysis of the beauty industry’s data, download our latest report below:

 

beauty industry data

 

Akta BavaliaGlobal Marketing Coordinator

Akta is a London based marketing professional, as well as a beauty fanatic, currently working at Launchmetrics. She graduated from the University for the Creative Arts with a BA (Hons) in Fashion Media and Promotion and has since then specialized in the fashion, luxury and beauty industries.

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