So I have a bit of an obsession with red lipstick. I also have a bit of a loyalty towards my cosmetic brands. However, the way I found my very first red lipstick was a little less routine than how I usually find my cosmetics (word of mouth/reviews). It was about this time a couple of years ago, and I wanted a bright red lip for the holidays. So, I waltzed right into a Sephora and took a stranger's word as to what was THE BEST red lipstick.
Paired with a waterproof lipliner I also fell in love with that day, I have never strayed way from the two brands --> until now.
For whatever reason, tons of people ask me what lipstick I use. From Twitter followers, to people in Walgreen's, I get asked what brand of red lipstick I rock. Being a social media strategist, I found this was the perfect scenario for a lipstick brand. Here you have a girl who wears your lipstick all of the time, calling you out on Twitter on a regular basis to her 100K + followers. Perfect opp, right?!
Here's the kicker -- that little lipstick brand NEVER responded to me. They did not even do as much as favorite one of my Tweets. WTF. I have been an advocate for their brand over and over again through Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. and NOTHING. Nada. While a little put off, it didn't mean the world to me that they didn't respond, because I still loved their lipstick, so whatevs.
Then a little brand named Red Burlesque made a genius social media play --> They sent me a spicy, energetic Tweet about loving the red lipstick I wore, and said that if I DM'd them, they'd send me some of their own to try. As if that wasn't enough to pique my interest, they found me on Instagram the SAME day and left non-salesy compliments on some of my Instagram photos. How could I ignore this brand that was complimenting me and not pressuring me into buying something? I wrote back that I'd love to try their brand, but could not decide on a color. They chose two for me right away and asked me for an address.
Now, this was when I was in the middle of my massive move to NYC, without an address. So, I completely forgot about it. However, during this time, they continued to leave tactful comments on my Instagram photos and respond to some Tweets. When they saw I was finally in NYC, they sent a friendly reminder DM and gave me their CEO's email to send my address to. Once I had my address, I emailed the CEO, who quickly emailed me back, and within a FEW days I had two lovely lipsticks from AUSTRALIA.
A week later, let me tell you, I will NEVER go back to that old brand. Not only am I super impressed by the social media prowess of Red Burlesque, I am SUPER SUPER impressed by how long their lipstick stays on compared to the other one AND how much better of a red it is!
With a few simple steps and the cost of two lipsticks (and shipping from Australia ;) ), Red Burlesque gained an influencer relationship that already has provided them numerous genuine Tweets, Instagram posts and now this blog post. Genius, am I right?!
I completely get that not all of you wear red lipstick, but here are some incredible lessons to be had from Red Burlesque's cheeky interactions with me:
- Do your research.
- Red Burlesque must have searched hashtags relevant to red lipstick on Twitter and Instagram. I use #redlips frequently in Instagram posts. Instead of searching through followers, or basic old hashtags, Red Burlesque did their research to find users using any and all hashtags pertaining to red lips. Research allows you to find new consumers that might not know about your brand in the first place, but use a product similar to what you sell. This narrow targeting can help you gain followers and consumers on a huge level.
- Be genuinely interested.
- Red Burlesque did not just chat with me about red lipstick. If they had, I would have been turned off about them just trying to sell me something. Instead, they liked other photos on my Instagram and kept a friendly, non-salesy conversation going with me through comments and Tweets. Being genuinely interested in potential consumers helps build trust and cultivates their interest in you, as well.
- Don't ask for anything.
- Red Burlesque was not pushy with me about trying their red lipstick. They obviously suggested that I did because that was their end goal, but they did not keep pushing the subject. On top of that, once I provided my address, they did not beg me to Tweet about it, or Instagram a photo of it. This is SO crucial, especially when dealing with influencers. The more forced an influencer feels about talking about your brand, the less they will. By not asking for anything, my social media posts about the brand were able to be more genuine, and that probably felt better to Red Burlesque, too, that I was genuinely a new fan of the brand.
- Provide security.
- When I didn't respond with my address at first, Red Burlesque was smart by offering the CEO's name and email address to send my address to. Providing your consumers with a credible name and face will help you get their address and secure info you need to send them products.
- Be confident in your product.
- As my mother said, "They had to be 100 percent secure in their product to just up and send it to you like that, knowing you already had a red lipstick fave." --> She is absolutely right. Red Burlesque knew they had a good product, so they weren't afraid to offer it to someone already in love with their lipstick. As I mention in a previous post (https://marjijsherman.com/im-calling-bullshit-social-media-≠-magic-bullet/) you have to have a STRONG product before you can have STRONG social media.
Another lesson to be had here? INTERACT with your brand advocates --> especially the ones that naturally gravitate towards your brand! My previous lipstick brand made it SO EASY to switch by never responding to me, and, luckily for me, the thief provided a product so much better than the original.
Next step: Eventually get a new profile pic on Twitter with a Red Burlesque lipstick in it, so I can start proudly answering those numerous questions about what lipstick I wear.
- Marji J. Sherman