How Indie Beauty Brands Are Using Video To Maximize Their Marketing Reach

In this edition of Beauty Independent’s ongoing series posing questions to beauty entrepreneurs, we ask 12 founders and executives: Do you use video to market your brand?

Ben Smith Founder, Disco

Yes, we absolutely do, especially as a digital-first brand. Our Instagram page is usually the first point of contact with potential customers, so our content has to be diverse in terms of medium, while still holding an authentic brand voice. The video and imagery content we share tends to be light, humorous and engaging as we want to be a brand that men can relate to, while simultaneously normalizing self-care. 

This is something that I felt strongly about from the start. We launched with an irreverent video. At its core, it’s an education tool that teaches men about our product offerings: how to use the products and their benefits, but presented in a format that is engaging, and something you’d want to share with your friends. The video has proven to be very effective in attracting new followers and customers.

Jessica Jade Founder and Artisan, SunKiss Organics

Video marketing is my secret weapon to reach clients in new and innovative ways. As the founder of an organic skincare line, I find that clients crave informational, inspirational and funny videos about my brand and crafting process. My go-to videos are informational how-to videos that explain how to use the products in our line. 

I also create funny behind-the-scenes videos that give them a taste of my brand and who is crafting their products. Creating video content for your brand doesn't have to be a chore. It can be as simple as grabbing your iPhone and capturing raw clips of the moment and sharing them via Instagram Stories.  

For videos that require a little more effort, I set up lightening equipment or use natural light, and I grab my Sony or iPhone to capture the video guides that help my clients understand my product line. For editing purposes, I use the iMovie feature on my Apple computer, which is extremely user-friendly, to add subtitles and fun graphics. 

My greatest tip for creating original video content is to stay true to your brand, and let your clients get to know you. That is your greatest asset when capturing video footage. To further spread the word and maximize reach upload your video content to Facebook as videos were the top 81% of Facebook posts in 2018.

Brian Oh CEO and Co-Founder, Venn Skincare

We recently created an ASMR (autonomous sensory meridian response) brand video featuring our new products. For skincare, unless people can test the samples, it’s very difficult to understand how the texture feels, etc., through photos and descriptions. So, we felt that the next best way would be to convey information through both visuals and sounds.

Tara Mattera VP of Product Development and Marketing, Body Barrier

We started using video as a trade show tool at IBE Dallas 2019. With a custom edgeless screen as our backdrop and short throw projector, we displayed video vignettes of our key products to create a dynamic and engaging experience. For future shows, we can use the same setup and still customize the animation to tailor it to that specific audience and also include any packaging updates.

Beyond the backdrop, video is also a key tool to recreate the tactile experience of our products. Unlike typical body washes, Body Barrier Soap Jel has a viscous and serum like consistency that allows for topical actives to have more contact with your skin. To really bring this to life beyond photography, we are creating video vignettes to show the liquid flowing out of the bottle and how it activates with water and lathers on the skin and, more importantly, how it stays on your skin until you’re ready to rinse off instead of just slipping off.

Gautama Swamy Founder and Partner, Perfect Locks

We truly love capturing and telling inspirational hair journeys through video. We’re able to document the transformation experienced by women who have experienced life-changing hair loss from natural causes, surgery or other medical conditions. Capturing those exact moments when the customer realizes who they are and where they are going is what we’re passionate about. It doesn’t stop there. We also love capturing tutorials, product demos and videos that show customers what our brand is passionate about.

Our brand is able to share these experiences with others using YouTube and Vimeo primarily. We use YouTube for maximum exposure online. It’s the best platform to show daily hair transformations, how-to videos, celebrity sponsorships, influencer collaborations and national media features. For our website, we use Vimeo to seamlessly and elegantly stream media. The world of hair extensions and hair loss solutions can be intimidating for newcomers. With video, we’re able to show people how simple and easy the experience can be for them.

Amber Fawson Co-Founder, Saalt

Video let us set the tone on how to talk about periods. Show people it's OK to talk about periods, and it is. We had to break the stigma of the awkward fourth-grade health class, the idea that only people that talk about periods also burn bras and, lastly, that period companies actually have no clue what it's like to have a period. (Finding the right period care does not make you automatically want to put on white pants and go clubbing.) *Cringe. So, we created our campaigns showing totally normal cup users answering people's real questions we've received on social media. No inspirational flower fields or twirling. People on their periods don't twirl.

Mandi Nyambi CEO, Baalm

We make informative videos that help educate our community on different skin care techniques. This allows us to showcase some of the products we carry in the context of real skills that people can implement at home. We have a lot of knowledge to spread about taking care of your skin the right way and using techniques that are scientifically-backed, so videos have been an incredible way to harness that information.

Videos live on YouTube, which make them more discoverable; on Instagram, which makes them more shareable; and on our platform, which helps to inform the shopping experience. By putting a face to the Baalm name and creating content that is actionable and helpful, we extend our reach and impact.

Dave Wongk Founder and CEO, Pure Tropix

Videos tell a story. I love it! We use them in most of our paid advertising. A one-minute video is worth 1.8 million words. Whether it’s to generate sales, launching a new product or services or growing your overall brand, a sales video does exactly what it implies, it introduces your product or service to your customer base and convinces them to buy. You should think of your sales video as the equivalent of a sales page or flyer.

VALERIE OBAZE Founder and CEO, R&R Luxury

In a planning meeting for 2019 marketing activity, we decided that video content would be used more often on our social media platforms throughout the year. We found that video posts on our channels got more engagement than photos, so we intentionally set out to increase the amount of video content on our page. It is more interactive and fun for customers, and it allowed us to tell our brand story in more ways than one. We have customers all over the world so a video is a more engaging way of reaching everyone and getting across messages that would usually be posted as captions to images. 

As a brand, we try to focus on the behind-the-scenes aspect for our video content showing what goes on at R&R HQ, at our factory, campaign shoots and following me around some days, too. Most of the videos we post ourselves are shot on our iPhones and edited using the free iMovie software, which is on most Apple computers. We are certainly not experts at video editing, but choose to do it ourselves instead of outsourcing as we find that that our followers really connect to that style of authentic content. 

UCG (user-generated content) is also very important to us. We love to repost video content that we have been tagged in by influencers and customers that feature our products and shows how regular people choose to use them. That content is very relatable and translates to our followers. As well as posting video content on our social media platforms and sending to our customers directly via mailers, due to Instagram algorithm changes, we started using IGTV to post our videos as Instagram is pushing content posted on its own video platform.

Melissa Reinking Chief Marketing Officer, BioClarity

Video is becoming essential these days. It’s a much more experiential way than a static image to immerse consumers in the brand, engage and tell a greater story. For example, our proprietary Floralux ingredient is a fairly dark green. Video allows us to not only show off that ingredient, but also show how it applies and then connect that ingredient story to our larger brand story and the product benefits. So, in essence, we’re able to show the product characteristics as if that person were applying it themselves with educational elements.   

I’d also say video is a powerful way to share what people think and the results they’ll see with our products. Today’s market landscape calls for brands to speak to individual consumer needs and to also be able to speak to an increasingly savvy and knowledgeable consumer. As a brand, we are fortunate enough to have a deep set of video and imagery that highlights our consumers’ individual journeys with our brand and products. This goes way beyond old-style tactics of before-and-afters. After all, what better way to get to know the brand than from people who are using the products?

Lastly, video doesn’t and shouldn’t cost a ton in production and post editing. Be scrappy. Use the tools you have at your disposal to weave the video content and the story you want to tell together. You may surprise yourself, sometimes the video clips that you were the scrappiest at putting together perform the best.

Graydon Moffat Founder, Graydon

We have made some YouTube videos. Some are more professional than others. I'm always in the test kitchen whipping up a new concoction, and there are so many times I'd love to shoot the sequence on the spot, but using your iPhone rarely gives the quality you need for anything more than an Insta Story.

Sona Gasparian Founder, Pérsona Cosmetics

My love for beauty began when I was a little girl spending countless hours watching my mom work in a salon. After years of honing my skill as a makeup artist, I realized that social media offered me a powerful tool to connect with people around the world. I started my own YouTube channel so I could share my tutorials and beauty tricks. Having this platform, I was able to learn exactly what my followers wanted from the beauty world. I then launched Pérsona Cosmetics in 2016 to create beautifully packaged and high-performance products that I felt the space was missing.

If you have a question you’d like Beauty Independent to ask beauty entrepreneurs, please send it to [email protected].