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Sephora complements Estée Lauder?s millennial-centric push via Snapchat

Sephora ramped up excitement for Estée Lauder?s new Instagram account and cosmetics line by bringing its Snapchat followers behind-the-scenes with brand ambassador Kendall Jenner as she prepared for an appearance and modeled beauty products.

The beauty retailer, which consistently rolls out new content on its social media channels, featured supermodel Kendall Jenner in a live Snapchat story this week, designed to further Estée Lauder?s push to connect with younger consumers. Ms. Jenner, who is the current face of Estée Lauder, was shown getting pampered prior to an event in Times Square?s Sephora store and modeling various Estée Edit cosmetics, which were later showcased to viewers of the public Snapchat story.

?While Sephora?s brand advocates span a broad swath of age demographics, the brand rightly places significant focus on its emerging legion of loyalists,? said Scott Forshay, senior mobility strategist of mobile product strategy and innovation at IBM. ?To connect with millennials and up-and-coming Generation Z audiences, Sephora understands that authenticity and a willingness to address advocates on their own terms reigns supreme in developing meaningful connections.

?Addressing advocates on their own terms requires an understanding of the archetypes that speak to the addressable audience and a utilization of the proper platform through which to deliver its message,? he said.

?In this campaign execution, the brand effectively utilizes Snapchat to chronicle a curated behind-the-scenes of a day in the life of a pop culture figure in real-time to create a unique connection with its coveted audience.?

Appealing to new audiences
Snapchat users following Sephora on the photo-sharing application were privy to an extensive collection of pictures and clips on Tuesday. The brand first unveiled several images teasing viewers about the identity of the well-known personality set to star in its live story, before showing Ms. Jenner sitting in a makeup chair.

Sephora then shadowed the supermodel as makeup artists applied Estée Lauder cosmetics to her face, in preparation for an event at Sephora?s Times Square store in Manhattan. 

Additional individuals were also seen filming Ms. Jenner for live streaming app Periscope, ensuring that consumers could join the action on whichever social channel they preferred.

Interspersed between Ms. Jenner?s emoji-heavy selfies, Sephora displayed the mountain of cosmetics available to the model?s glam squad. In one Snap, the retailer tagged Estée Lauder?s new Instagram account, @TheEsteeEdit, for users wanting more than a glimpse at the company?s latest beauty products.

Ms. Jenner was later seen modeling on the balcony of a New York building for an impromptu photoshoot before doing press interviews with InStyle magazine.

Snapchat followers tagged along as the Estée Lauder beauty ambassador made her way through Manhattan to the Sephora store on Fifth Avenue, the official launch spot for The Estée Edit product line and Instagram account.

Ms. Jenner was seen riding in an elevator and stepping out of her car, only to be greeted by a slew of paparazzi.

The Estée Edit?s new Sephora geofilter was also emblazoned across the screen.

The Snapchat story then featured the cosmetics used on Ms. Jenner, including The Estée Edit by Estée Lauder's Flash Illuminator as well as The Edit Eyeshadow Palette. Consumers could view the exact shades of makeup worn by Ms. Jenner, in case they wanted to purchase those products and replicate her look.

The Estée Edit is Estée Lauder?s millennial-friendly cosmetics line, encompassing 72 makeup and 10 skincare items. The packaging features brighter colors meant to appeal to younger customers.

Lastly, the Snapchat story panned to an event attendee taking a selfie with Sephora?s new geofilter, now available in stores. The geofilter celebrates the debut of The Estée Edit makeup line, using the tagline ?Killin? It.?

Viewers of the Snapchat story may now be inspired to visit their local Sephora store to peruse the new cosmetics and take photos with the branded geofilter.

Lacquering up social media
The day-long Estée Lauder takeover on Sephora?s Snapchat channel was also used to boost followers for @TheEsteeEdit, the cosmetics brand?s newest Instagram account. The social account heavily features Ms. Jenner, the face of the line, posing with a variety of products, some of which have her name on them.

?While the brand?s primary Instagram account is an effective platform for creating desire across its broad demographic target audience through high-production quality still imagery and video vignettes, having a dedicated account for its young beauty ambassadors allows for a more authentic connection with its younger demographic,? Mr. Forshay said.

Estée Lauder first signed Ms. Jenner as a brand spokeswoman in 2014, signaling a desire to market its items to mobile-savvy, younger consumers who did not previously belong to its main demographic.

Consumers who purchase some of the beauty marketer?s new items are encouraged to upload photos to Instagram via the #beautyattitudes hashtag for a chance to be featured on @TheEsteeEdit feed.

With the support of Sephora?s massive social media following, Estée Lauder is poised to continue on its upward trajectory of millennial-centric marketing.

Revealing exclusive content on Snapchat, such as news of secret sales, has long been one of Sephora?s favorite mobile strategies.

Sephora drove mobile app downloads last holiday season by taking to Snapchat to advertise exclusive first looks at doorbuster deals that were visible to app users several days before sales hit stores (see story).

Additionally, the beauty giant first previewed the 2016 birthday gift for members of its Beauty Insider rewards program on Snapchat, driving further interest in loyalty memberships (see story).

?Mobile devices have come to exist as means to a greater end: the role they play in helping users achieve a desired experience,? Mr. Forshay said. ?Marketers would do well to remember that experience is not a product of technology, it is a product of emotion.

?Technologies and products can be commoditized, but experiences cannot.?