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Sephora promotes nationwide social impact initiative through mobile channels

Beauty retailer Sephora will soon expand its complimentary Classes for Confidence program to more than 85 Sephora stores nationwide, partnering with various non-profit organizations to help spread a message of attainable workplace beauty and confidence.

The Classes for Confidence program, one of three programs that constitute the retailer?s social impact initiative, Sephora Stands, has been in the works since its pilot program in 2015. The classes include instruction from Sephora-approved educators in every step of the beauty process in order to promote a natural and professional appearance and to inspire confidence in life?s transitions.

?It is very helpful for brands to launch initiatives that stick and become a lasting helpful component for their consumers to better themselves and learn like the one Sephora is launching with a long lasting goal and timeline,? said Marci Troutman, CEO of SiteMinis.

?Sephora Stands could prove to be one of the great social events that's talked about through social media for years to come. If you help even one person live a better life you are accomplishing a great good.?

Education for a cause
The expansion of the Classes for Confidence program will officially begin on Saturday, October 1. Those interested can learn about the program through Sephora Stand?s mobile-optimized Web page, which also contains information other social initiatives: Sephora Accelerate, a program promoting female entrepreneurship in beauty; and Sephora Stands Together, which provides support for Sephora employees affected by natural disasters or unexpected life changes.

Because much of the Sephora Stands social media presence focuses on the Sephora Accelerate unit of its social impact campaign, the expansion of the Classes for Confidence program offers an opportunity to diversify its social media offerings in an organic fashion through user-generated content. The program also gets consumers into Sephora?s physical stores and gives them access to a selection of the products used in the classes, both of which create more opportunities for social media sharing.

Perhaps most importantly, the Classes for Confidence program allows Sephora to align itself with the successes of young women in a transitional period in their lives, increasing both brand engagement and brand empathy while engaging with the communities it works within.

The brand is promoting its cause through both of its social media handles, @Sephora and @SephoraStands, as well as with the hashtags #SephoraStands and #ClassesforConfidence.

Inspiring confidence
Sephora is already in the business of offering free classes, but Classes for Confidence is different in that it promotes an altruistic face for a brand that is concerned not just with business, but also with the welfare of its local community.

Sephora allows users of its app, Sephora to Go, to sign up for classes via mobile. It also hosts exclusive mobile-only classes such as the Pocket Contour Class.

Sephora has made it clear that education is the cornerstone of its social strategy. Its latest Android application enables users to shop its inventory, scan products in-store to access how-to tutorials and watch videos, underscoring the beauty giant?s efforts to drive commerce with education-based content (see story).

Miu Miu?s latest campaign also celebrates women?s empowerment and community with the release of a narrative film that investigates the female skating subculture and the support systems created within it (see story). 

?Millennials aren't just receptive to social initiatives in the mobile space, they are demanding them,? said Ms. Troutman.

?If a brand can produce an initiative that last through time as Sephora's goal with their program 'Sephora Stands' promises, then their brand becomes embedded into the hearts of their consumers, and that is how loyalty is built.?