Social Media and the Beauty Boom: ColourPop’s Secret to Success

With everything going on in the world, we've been enjoying a healthy relationship with Netflix (maybe you can relate?) and recently stumbled upon an interesting documentary series, Broken. The series explores how influencer hype and scarcity marketing impact a variety of industries. While we highly recommend watching the entire series, we were especially struck by the first episode, “Makeup Mayhem." It explores the exploding beauty industry, and highlights how ColourPop Cosmetics successfully innovated with social media to create products that sell out in mere minutes

The beauty industry is experiencing a boom thanks in big part to social media. Social media platforms like Instagram and YouTube serve as a platform for customers to share reviews, experiences, and educate one another on best practices. All to say, today’s consumer is more knowledgeable about harmful ingredients like parabens, and they research what is in their products, along with how they are tested, manufactured, packaged, delivered. How the products impact everything from their skin to the environment. Transparency and education has paved the way for independent and clean beauty brands like ColourPop, who prides itself on “on being wallet friendly and bunny approved”, to emerge. 

Social media opened that door for conversation between brands and consumers. ColourPop recognized the power of social media early on, using it as a way of connecting directly with their customers and building relationships with an army of well-known beauty influencers like Safiya Nygaard and Kathleen Lights -- perhaps one of the biggest secrets to their success. As Laura Nelson, ColourPop’s co-founder says, “It’s really about engaging with our customers, and our fans and our followers, so that we’re having a dialogue”.

ColourPop places such immense value on this dialogue that it goes all the way to the company's top, informing high-level marketing and production decisions. Because all ColourPop products are produced in-house, the turnaround is nearly instantaneous, allowing them to quickly react to customer demand. Laura says, “Because we’re able to engage with our customers, we’re able to ask the questions, we’re able to solicit the feedback. They’re truly a part of the formula development process at every step of the way”. This transparent and direct connection with their customers helps ColourPop increase efficiencies and keep costs low. In other words, customers can thank themselves for ColourPop’s wallet-friendly price points.

Thanks to all these efforts, in just a few short years, ColourPop now boasts a mega 9.5 million followers on Instagram, and is arguably one of the most in-demand cosmetics brands in the world. ColourPop’s social-listening-informed success is just one example of how impactful customer conversation can be to a brand. As mentioned in the episode, “Nowadays the customer is the expert, using social media to send a constant stream of valuable information back to the cosmetics companies.”  But the best part is, any brand can seize the same opportunities - it all begins with identifying these influential customers, which is where Gatsby comes in. At Gatsby, we take out the guesswork -- identifying and connecting you directly with your most influential customers. We start the conversation - where you take it is up to you. 

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