Social influence driving beauty brands—who’s building the most buzz?

Agility PR   by Richard Carufel | Oct 31, 2019 | Public Relations If you’re not building your brand on social media these days, you’re not doing it right. Industries across the board are having huge success with social and influencer marketing, and beauty and personal care brands are no exception. On the other end of the spectrum, word of mouth remains the best metric for offline conversations—the other kind of “social.”   Social data and analytics firm Engagement Labs recently released its latest TotalSocial® ranking of the top beauty and personal care brands in the U.S based on social influence, a ranking that continuously measures the most important drivers of brand social performance.   Ulta is the top ranked brand, up from third in the previous ranking, thanks to leading all brands in terms of offline consumer conversations. The ranking is unique in that it combines offline and online consumer conversations. The brands in the top 10 have earned the highest TotalSocial scores in the category for the last six months, compared to the company’s previous ranking published June 2018.   Ulta edged out Bath & Body Works and Sephora among beauty and personal care brands, based on the quantity and quality of conversation engagement by consumers. The brand’s recent high point was in March when YouTube sensation Jeffree Star drew a massive crowd to a Houston Ulta store to highlight his Morphe brand collaboration. The impact could be seen in both social media and face-to-face conversations.   Read the full Agility PR article, here.
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Ulta Tops Consumer Online and Offline Conversations

BeautyMatter   By Kelly Kovack Posted October 30, 2019 In Insight, Marketing, Trend Research shows that both online and offline customer brand conversations drive purchase decisions, but they require separate marketing strategies. Data and analytics firm Engagement Labs released its TotalSocial ranking report of the top beauty and personal care brands in the US based on social influence. “Leadership in social influence requires brands to embrace a holistic strategy, emphasizing both online and offline conversations,” said Ed Keller, CEO of Engagement Labs. “The top TotalSocial beauty brands are what we call Conversation Commanders because they excel both online and offline. That’s important because online and offline conversations are equally important in driving sales.” Key Highlights:
  • Ulta is the top-ranked brand, up from third in the previous ranking, thanks to leading all brands in terms of offline consumer conversations. The brand’s recent high point was in March when YouTube sensation Jeffree Star drew a massive crowd to a Houston Ulta store to highlight his Morphe brand collaboration.
  • Bath & Body Works held steady in the number two position, one of only two brands scoring above 55 on both online and offline conversation (the other such brand is Lush).
  • Sephora was third-ranked, followed by Dove Men + Care, which jumped up five ranking points to fourth overall thanks to extremely high sentiment scores, both online and offline.
  Read the full BeautyMatter article, here.
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What People Say About Booze Online Differs From What They Say In Real Life, Report Finds

MediaPost by J. Bednarski @pjbtweet A new report from Engagement Labs  makes the interesting point that what consumers may say about liquor, wine and beer brands “offline” — that is, in face-to-face conversations — may be very different from what they say on social media sites online. “Indeed, there is reason to believe that for the beverage alcohol industry, social media may be a particularly poor predictor of offline behavior,” says a new Engagement Lab report. One reason, it says, is that some marketers may hold back on social media because of complicated rules within their industries. But another reason is that “many social media users will be wary of sharing too many posts about alcohol, for fear of implying they have a drinking problem, or simply to avoid the risk of offending friends and family who are confirmed non-drinkers.” The subject comes up in an Engagement Labs blog because a new report out this month from a competitor, Social Standards, warns brands that consumer interest in alcoholic beverages is down, based on tabulation of online mentions on social media. But Social Standards is only measuring online attention. Engagement Labs’ tabulation of both online and offline conversations — basically, those are “word of mouth” chats — reveals that over the last four years, the volume of conversations has held steady for the biggest beer, spirits, and wine brands.   Read the full MediaPost article, here.
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Millennials Are Talking About These Brands the Most

MarketingCharts October 23, 2019 … A few brands made some noticeable improvement between 2018 and 2019 in the US, with JP Morgan Chase ranking #1 as the top W-O-M Improver with a score of 56.1 (up from 39.2 last year). The financial services brand is followed by Mattel, which improved by 16.1 points to reach a score of 50.7 this year. Mitsubishi (up 15.1 points), Utz (up 14.2 points) and Patron (up 14 points) round out the top 5 W-O-M Improvers.  

Top Global W-O-M Brands

Per YouGov’s global rankings, Facebook was the clear leader for Millennials’ W-O-M, leading in 20 markets. Instagram placed high in 14 markets while WhatsApp and YouTube were in the top 10 in 13 and 12 markets, respectively. While #1 in the US, Netflix made the top 10 in 17 markets. Another streaming contender, Spotify, was in the top 10 in 9 markets, though it didn’t crack the list in the US.

Conversations About Brands Differ Online and Offline

Separately, research from Engagement Labs indicates that social listening may not be enough to determine word-of-mouth sentiment about brands. In measuring online and offline conversations about brands for a recent study, Engagement Labs found that there is virtually no correlation at all in net sentiment, noting that “online and offline discussions are two entirely different conversations, generally unrelated to each other.” This means that by limiting analysis to social listening, brands may be missing out on key data to inform marketing strategies. The full research is available for download here.   Read the full MarketingCharts article, here.
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Ulta Takes Top Spot in ‘Online and Off-line’ Social Engagement

Engagement Labs’ TotalSocial ranking assessed the top beauty and personal-care brands.

By Arthur Zaczkiewicz on October 22, 2019   Ulta, Bath & Body Works and Sephora took the top spots in Engagement Labs’ ranking of the top beauty and personal-care brands in the U.S. The “TotalSocial ranking” by the data and analytics solution provider is based on each brand’s “social influence.” Ulta’s position on the list was due to a live activation earlier this year. The brand moved up from third place in the prior year’s TotalSocial ranking. Researchers at the Engagement Labs said in their report that Ulta lead all brands “in terms of off-line consumer conversations.” “Ulta edged out Bath & Body Works and Sephora among beauty and personal-care brands, based on the quantity and quality of conversation engagement by consumers,” authors of the report said. “The brand’s recent high point was in March when YouTube sensation Jeffree Star drew a massive crowd to a Houston Ulta store to highlight his Morphe brand collaboration. The impact could be seen in both social media and face-to-face conversations.”   Read the full Women’s Wear Daily article, here.
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Listen to Your Customer Wherever They Are

Research Live   FEATURE 17 OCTOBER 2019 – this article also appears in Market Research Society’s Impact Magazine

Jane Bainbridge

Social media means people’s views on brands – from customer service to product design – can be shared in seconds. But marketers must be careful not to assume this is the only valid platform for understanding people’s sentiment. 

  There’s nothing like a Twitter storm. The indignation of the individual, ideally involving a few carefully crafted sentences, eagerly jumped on by others – perhaps with the benefit of a hashtag – and, before you know it, you have a full-on public relations crisis for a brand comms team to try to avert, calm and resolve. With social media offering such a public platform, easily shareable and able to rack up ‘likes’ and ‘shares’ in minutes, not just days, it’s not hard to see why companies spend so much time monitoring their online sentiment. Just because social media is easy to measure, however, doesn’t mean it’s the only, or most important, platform for customers’ opinions. Last year, Kantar signed a partnership deal with social intelligence and analytics firm Engagement Labs with the aim of analysing all aspects of consumers’ conversations – online and offline. The TotalSocial platform collects data from social networks and Kantar carries out continuous surveys of a nat rep sample of the British public, to achieve a more balanced view. Sometimes, online conversations will mirror offline ones, but word of mouth often follows a different trajectory. Both sides matter to businesses, but just paying attention to one can give a skewed picture.   Read the full Research Live article, here.
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Teens’ Changing Tastes – And Lower Spending – Drive Retail Innovation

PYMNTS.com   By: PYMNTS Posted on October 17, 2019   Teens have been big drivers of commerce for going on a century now, and that’s even more prevalent as marketers find more precise ways to target those young consumers – who, in turn, are experts with their mobile devices. Engagement Labs, the data and analytics company that assists marketers, says the group of people born between 1997 and 2016 are 86 million strong, and influence $600 billion of spending by families. This group is also big on conversations – both online and offline – with Engagement Labs finding them to drive 19 percent of purchases. “You see an advertisement, people know it’s a paid endorsement,” says Brad Fay, Engagement Labs’ chief commercial officer. “It’s only got so much credibility … the most powerful messages are ones that come from someone you know.” Engagement Labs surveyed 6,736 teens during the course of 12 months about what they talked about in the previous 24 hours, and found that those topics included gadgets, drinks and snack foods. Fay noted that they found Generation Z to be a very social group of people. As a result, digital devices from the likes of Apple and Samsung will be popular with this group, as are food and beverage brands.   Read the full PYMNTS.com article, here.
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Joining the dots of online and offline WOM

  WARC   News, 12 September 2019   When it comes to word of mouth, brands have been quick to focus on online engagement via social media and to then assume offline conversations are the same – but research shows brand conversations across different channels have almost no relationship to one another. For a comprehensive view, brands need to measure the full conversation both on and offline, its volume, sentiment, who it is shared with and how influential the speaker is, says Matt Dodd, MD/Analytics, Kantar. Writing for WARC, he explains that “not only do people tend to discuss different types of brands [across different channels], but their sentiment for the same brand may differ vastly between online and offline channels.” Kantar and Engagement Labs analysed online and offline consumer conversations for 400 UK brands and looked at the four key metrics outlined above, with each weighted to their correlation to sales, to compare digital and offline chatter. When the weekly averages for online and offline conversations for the brands in the study were compared, across all measures there was low correlation; only in the case of volume did the correlation level reach double digits, at 13.7%. (For more, read the full article on WARC: Getting the full picture: Understanding the link between online and offline brand chatter.)   Read the full WARC article, here.
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Talk Triggers: Using Word-of-Mouth Marketing to Promote Your Self-Storage Facility

Inside Self-Storage

When it comes to word-of-mouth marketing, self-storage operators can’t just stand by and hope people talk about them. Instead, they should develop a “talk trigger” they can share with every customer.

Steven Jeffers | Sep 03, 2019   If you’ve ever stayed at a DoubleTree hotel, the warm, gooey cookie handed out during check-in probably stands out in your mind. At Five Guys eateries, you know to order a small batch of fries because they always overload you with extra. The experience at The Cheesecake Factory is always unique due to the massive menu. All these are examples of business “talk triggers.” When it comes to digital marketing, many self-storage operations have a social media strategy, a local business strategy and a Google-review strategy. However, when it comes to word-of mouth, they come up short. We tend to trust that if we provide good enough customer service, tenants will surely talk about our facility with others. At least, that’s what we hope. And there’s a good reason to want this kind of promotion. According to a 2018 study by data and analytics firm Engagement Labs, 19 percent of purchases are caused by word-of-mouth and almost 90 percent are at least influenced by it. Marketing firm Convince & Convert found that recommendations from friends or family members rank third in consumers’ decision-making process, coming in behind only personal experience or familiarity with a brand. The same study found that 83 percent of consumers have given at least one word-of-mouth recommendation at some time. As self storage operators, we all care about word-of-mouth marketing but don’t seem to know what to do about it. Enter the talk trigger.   Read the full Inside Self-Storage article, here.
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There’s Almost No Correlation between Online and Offline Conversations

Loyalty360   Customer Experience McDonald’s Will Expand Food Delivery Nationwide McDelivery service will no longer be limited to major cities. “McDonald’s deal with DoorDash partnership illustrates how Americans are changing their dining preferences. Millennials, for one, prefer to cook at home or order in, which can save money compared with eating at a restaurant. Offering home delivery may help McDonald’s target those younger consumers who want quarter pounders delivered to their doorstep.” There’s Almost No Correlation between Online and Offline Conversations New research shows that what consumers are saying online isn’t indicative of what they’re saying offline. “The general proposition here is that ‘monitoring social media cannot reveal what is happening in terms of offline conversations.’ This may sound counter-intuitive because ‘everyone’s online except people over 65, right?’ But this is what Engagement Labs’ data show. It’s also what location intelligence company Gravy has shown in other contexts.” Walmart and Nordstrom Are Building Stores That Don’t Sell Anything The two retailers “are creating small hubs in big cities and dense suburban areas for shoppers to retrieve their online grocery and clothing orders. These new locations give them access to shoppers who want their stuff in a hurry without schlepping out to regular big-box stores or waiting around for home delivery.”     Read the full Loyalty 360 article, here.
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