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Mintel Highlights the Beauty in Social Media Engagement

Posted: May 3, 2012

While Britain’s beauty and personal care industries increasingly look to take advantage of the opportunities offered by an increasingly online—and vocal—audience, understanding their behavior while there is crucial to future success. Indeed, with Brits increasingly incorporating the Internet into their everyday lives, recent research from Mintel reveals that almost four in 10 Brits (37%, equating to 15 million consumers) have interacted with beauty and personal care brands online.

The Internet has revolutionized the way that people communicate with one another and social networking sites have facilitated a far greater reach for word of mouth. Every day in the U.K., 59% of Brits log into their Facebook accounts and 13% sign into Twitter. Mintel's latest research reveals Brits increasingly use the Internet to research beauty products before purchase with social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter informing purchase decisions on beauty products for 34% of would-be buyers.

In a new report examining the role of the Internet and online media in the beauty and personal care sector, Mintel finds just over two thirds (67%) of Brits who engage with beauty brands have visited the website of a beauty or personal care brand. Almost 10 million people visit beauty and personal care brand websites with just under nine million resorting to Google when they want to find out more about these products and brands.

Alexandra Richmond, senior social media and lifestyles analyst at Mintel, says, “People use social media to share what they think with many people—not just their friends and family. In fact, sharing their thoughts on beauty products with friends, family or colleagues is a key reason that people talk about beauty and personal care brands both online and offline. This illustrates the strength of word of mouth, and the Internet plays a key role in enabling people to influence other people’s purchases whilst at the same time providing brands with valuable feedback.”

Irrespective of the amount of time that people spend online, Facebook is the preferred vehicle to express thoughts or opinions on beauty brands when online. Almost three quarters (74%) of people who have used the Internet to contact a brand or discuss one have used Facebook to do so. Facebook users are more likely to become a fan or “like” a brand on Facebook than they are to post a status update or engage directly on the brand’s Facebook wall. Almost two thirds (65%) of those who have contacted a brand via Facebook have become a fan or “liked” the brand compared to just one in four (24%) who have posted a status update on Facebook referencing a beauty or personal care brand.