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Digital Marketing Trends Overtaking The Beauty Industry

5 minute read

Rosanna Ryan

Digital marketing trends on social channels, and even in stores, are changing the way the beauty industry interacts with and lures consumers.

In this new, digital-first age consumers are increasingly inclined to shop for clothes and accessories online, knowing they can easily return purchased products if they’re unsatisfied. Cosmetics and beauty products may seem like a whole different ball game, but there are some leaders in the industry proving that wrong. With a strong marketing and PR strategy – including creative collaborations with influencersconsumers are just as likely to shop for beauty products online and conversely, digital media can be used to attract them to stores.

These are the digital marketing trends overtaking the beauty industry:

Curated Social Content

These days having great, engaging content on your social channels is a no-brainer. According to an ATKearney study on Digital beauty in Europe, other than price and promotions, consumers want:

  • Convenience
  • To purchase products online regularly
  • Inspiration for makeovers and beauty ideas

Social media channels are the perfect tool to provide this inspiration. Beauty companies should make the most of their already existing customer base to gather curated content for their channel, inviting followers to post images of how they wear their products. The same way fashion brands use product placement, like Manu Atelier sharing images of their customers wearing their leather bags.

Beauty brands should also take advantage of these social channels to entice customers to come to their stores. Phygital – the marriage of physical and digital – can also be used in the beauty industry. L’Oréal-owned Brand NYX invited customers to use their phones in-store, scanning barcodes to see product descriptions and view how other consumers had used their products under their hashtag via Instagram. Consequently, NYX “doubled its global store count” in 2016.

Online Virtual Experiences

For those who refuse to make the trek to purchase a product in-store, websites have to be better equipped to tackle doubts and issues normally handled in-store. Want to find out how a particular shade of lipstick will look on you? Trying to find the perfect eyeshadow? Beauty brands are constantly improving the virtual experience feature on their sites.

Sephora’s Virtual Artist provides a fun and easy tool you can use from your laptop or mobile to digitally try on different shades. While this may not be as realistic as trying on makeup in person, Sephora is providing an interactive experience and nowadays, to attract customers, it’s all about the experience.

digital beauty trends

Utilizing New Channels + Influencer Colabs

Obviously being present on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter, among others, is an absolute must nowadays. But to keep up in the beauty industry, it’s important to take it a step further and do influencer colabs on these new-ish platforms, such as #InstaStories and YouTube via Vlogger videos. Collaborating with influencers who review your products on video or do makeup tutorials feels much more authentic than traditional advertising.  In fact, “Millennials are 44% more likely to trust experts (who happen to be strangers); but they are 247% more likely to be influenced by blogs or social networking sites.”

Elle Fowler teamed up with All Things Hair, which is partly sponsored by TRESemmé and Suave Professionals and Nexxus in this vlog episode which received 62,578 views and 1,000 likes. 

Optimizing Product Launch Schedule

Another way to use social media to your advantage is to adjust your product launch schedule according to trends you see on social media or gaps you can easily identify in the market when your followers ask you for products. You can build up expectation announcing launch dates to your community, no longer relying on Christmas or Valentine’s Day for peak sales. However, unlike with the “see now, buy now” strategy in fashion which is all about the speed, surprise and limited quantities, in beauty, it’s about determining “When the timing is right”. Drunk Elephant claims that retaining flexibility to think through their actions is key to their success. For ColourPop, a key launch date was Kylie Jenner’s birthday.


Digital marketing trends are revolutionizing how the beauty industry markets and projects to customers. Much like the fashion industry, there’s lots of new hurdles and new territory to be conquered, but there are plenty of ways to come out on top of the marketing game. Several brands in the beauty industry are already succeeding with digital marketing, so when in doubt, take a look at the competition. It’s time to put your best digital foot forward.

What other digital marketing trends are you seeing in the beauty and cosmetic realm?

Rosanna RyanContent & Social Media Specialist

Rosanna is the author of The Fashion English Bible, an English guide for Spanish-speaking fashion professionals. She studied fashion at SCAD and has worked in the industry in NYC, London and now Madrid. She is passionate about design, creativity and innovation.

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2 Responses > join the discussion... “Digital Marketing Trends Overtaking The Beauty Industry”

  1. Asra

    I think the writer is new to this industry. All the above tips had been practiced in this industry for the last 7 years. I don’t find anything as a new trend in this article.

    • Samira Hersom

      Hi Asra, Thanks for your comment. This article is focused on trends that have taken over the industry, so is not necessarily new. If you have any new trends in mind, we would be happy to hear your opinion so we can watch out for them.

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