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Leveraging Social Media to Grow Your Beauty Brand

By: Donna C. Barson
Posted: October 5, 2009, from the October 2009 issue of GCI Magazine.

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During the first week of her company launch, Kleinman secured an interview with ChicGalleria.com, which was then picked up by a major daily newspaper’s Web site. Within three months, she had an additional review, a radio interview and a product feature on a television show. “[Social media] allowed me to add credibility to my skin care line quickly and with no investment, and it continues to be a great resource,” she says. Angie Parlionas, president and founder of Yoyo Lip Gloss, has used social media platforms in addition to blogging to help increase her sales, connect with customers and create hype about products.

She says it is important to know the people who are following you, and has leveraged Twitter and MySpace to get women to attend casting calls, participate in giveaways and respond to surveys—which have been a very valuable tool to determine which products her customers want and love.

Not only do these campaigns add a different dimension to advertising and marketing, they add direct contact to the consumer. “Social media allows the public to speak freely and honestly about your product and company,” says Parlionas. “What better way to create a reputation then to let the public build it for you? If you give your target audience something to talk about, it will.”

With all the praises being sung about social media, you have to wonder: Is there anything bad about using social media for your business?

Honestly, not really, says Kathleen Hogg of Bath-a-holic, a line of bath and body products, who has used Facebook and Twitter to promote her products and connect with existing and prospective customers. However, she says it is difficult to gauge the results of all her social media efforts. “I have not found conclusive data that confirms social media used is generating solid sales,” she says.