Niche beauty brands have cleverly used online channels and social media to outsmart industry giants and build huge followings of loyal consumers. Here, Mintel’s Sarah Jindal, Senior Innovation & Insights Analyst, Beauty & Personal Care, shares three lessons digital marketers can learn from indie brands, including innovative case studies that highlight brands in action.

Lesson #1: Share your brand story

An endearing aspect of many indie brands is their willingness to ‘bare their souls’ and connect with consumers on a personal level using stories and profiles that put people and places at the forefront.

Case study: Glossier

US Skincare brand Glossier was born out of a very popular blog with a high level of engagement. Founder Emily Weiss started Into the Gloss as a place for storytelling and as a way to connect with the beauty community in a personal way. That idea carries through into Glossier as a brand where telling meaningful stories is a way to stay connected to the consumer.

With a current social media audience of over 830,000 and an ever-growing level of engagement, skincare brand Glossier has perfected the art of launching and marketing a brand through social media. Glossier’s latest launch, Invisible Shield, happened online before it happened anywhere else.

“This is a company built just as much around our community as it
is by us.” – Chief Executive, Emily Weiss

With packaging designed with Instagram in mind, Glossier relies on the selfie generation to get the message out, and has even integrated user comments into its product development. The Instagram post that launched Invisible Shield garnered over 35,000 likes and comments in the first seven days alone. Mintel’s report on beauty retailing reveals that 7 in 10 of the heaviest beauty buyers in the US say that social media posts have encouraged them to buy particular products. With such a heavy reliance on peer-to-peer recommendations, Glossier could be creating the next generation of door-to-door selling.

Source: Glossier Instagram

Check out Sarah’s other post in this series here and here.

Sarah Jindal is Senior Innovation and Insights Analyst, Beauty and Personal Care, at Mintel. In her role she regularly interfaces with key beauty clients and lends her expertise developing ingredient technologies for beauty and personal care.

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