September was a good month. My intention was to grow my presence on my TikTok page and that’s exactly what I noticed happen. I found September to be an inspirational month. I had the motivation, the content ideas and the time to create content and post on a consistent schedule which I believe truly helped with the success of September.
I began the month with the following statistics.
And ended the month with these statistics.
September saw a brand reach out to me and challenged me to determine what rates I should charge as a new content creator. Although the offer was discussed and rates were exchanged, the brand never ended up reaching out to me to decline or to negotiate. This tells me maybe I had rates set too high. Nevertheless, this didnt deter me, if that brand didnt see my poential, someone else will.
I never set goals on how many followers I wanted to reach but I decided in September to try to reach 800 followers for October and if I stay as consistent as I was in September, October may be even better than before. My fingers are crossed and hopefully I can reach that milestone.
It is pretty obvious once meeting me that beauty & makeup is more than a love or a passion, it takes up the majority of my life. It is what I dream about in my sleep and what I know in my heart will always keep me sane.
As my DA is a continuation of a previous DA, I wanted to continue to pursue this topic because DAs can feel like a lot of straining work when you start an idea you don’t truly love and have the time or ability to commit to. As this DA ended up becoming a hobby of mine from previous semesters, I know that I can commit to creating and publishing content for BCM302 and truly give it more than just a little bit of thought, I can give it my all.
My strategy for this DA is similar to the strategy I use outside of uni. This means staying up to date with all the latest trends and product launches and creating content to reflect what is trending and new in beauty and makeup. Although this will mean purchasing products to review and haul and therefore can be expensive to keep up with, I know I would have purchased these products regardless if they were for my DA or simply to grow my collection. I love trying new products and growing my makeup collection and in the meantime, I’m getting to help others who view my content, letting them know if what is being featured is worth the splurge. Most times it is but its good to have someone tell you if something is worthless to save you your money because beauty and makeup is not cheap.
I am beginning my DA with these current statistics.
Content will be published daily to my TikTok account @oliviajlopez. I’m always experimenting with the best time to post my content during any day to get the best results and will document my results throughout the progress and duration of this DA. I also hope to find the best hashtag combination for the highest results of views, likes and shares on my content. I hope to document this progress and what I’ve discovered monthly to my blog which I will advertise on my Twitter account for anyone interested in my progress.
Though I’m aiming to continue to grow and build my DA, I am focusing on the development of my online presence on TikTok, but also within the beauty realm. With this, I have identified that I am not aiming for a particular number of views on a video or to reach a particular number of followers, though this is a good way to know that I am building my presence, I am more so looking at the comments, recommendations & suggestions viewers of my content are asking to see from me as a big integral part of my DA’s success. Interaction with anyone consuming my content is important to me as it helps to build my presence in the beauty space on TikTok.
For my DA, I wanted to focus on the future of the beauty industry. This meant doing research on topics of interest and explaining them in a blog post while also posting TikTok videos to compliment my blog posts. I initially anticipated creating weekly research with a blog post and a minimum of one TikTok video. This changed as I realised my timeline was overestimated. This was all outlined in my pitch.
My DA’s initial method was to conduct weekly research, complete a blog post and film a TikTok video. Instead, I decided to complete a 3 blog post series but continue to post beauty-related TikTok videos weekly. This new method for my DA allowed me to research the topics that interested me the most but also allowed me to make crucial observations within my niche. Through this, I was able to make predictions of trends by analysing the videos and the products featured showing me what I needed to create in the beauty TikTok space.
From the research and observations made during my DA, I was able to create content that interested me but also saw me grow as a creator on the platform. The weekly lectures on predictions, trajectories, as well as AI technology assisted me in my blog post series development and are further explained in my DA post.
As this DA is centred around the future of the beauty industry, my DA’s utility is not only going to help others learn about the topics spoken about in my blog post series, but also has personal utility for my future. This DA should hopefully show future employers my dedication to the beauty industry to gain an advantage in my future employment endeavours.
The Future Cultures DA Challenge:
The challenge in this DA was to connect how the future can be represented within the DA. In 1 year, my DA will still be active and will become a more active hobby of mine. In 5 years, this DA has the ability to become a part-time or full-time job which would change the trajectory of my life. In 10 years, this DA could not only become my full-time job but also open up many more opportunities that would yet again open up doors and opportunities that I would only have dreamed of, e.g building my own beauty empire or working closely with my favourite brands. In 25-50 years, my DA could be used as inspiration to other students delving into researching the beauty industry’s past to determine its future.
Successes and Limitations:
My biggest limitation was the lack of time. This limited my ability to stick to my initial plan but brought me my biggest success, the growth and exposure of my TikTok videos. During the DA, I also decided to record my growth which can be found in my 3rd blog post. This for me was a major success and a step closer to being able to do what I love every day.
Another major success was having Sephora like and comment on a video and the chief marketing officer of Rare Beauty, Katie Welch also notice my account.
This semester I focused on the future of the beauty industry, with research blog posts published on my blog but also through observational and participatory research on TikTok. TikTok is in the top 3 social media platforms for marketers to watch in 2022 (Bump, 2021) and has been on the rise since 2020. Being that I enjoy content creation and also study marketing, I understand the importance this platform has to the future of the beauty industry.
Since my pitch, I changed my direction and therefore so did the outcome and the results. I must admit, I always get ahead of myself with my DA timeline. Due to my lifestyle, completing weekly research and filming weekly content for my TikTok alongside lectures, tutorials and other assessments, I decided to reduce the number of blog posts but try my best to continue to maintain weekly content posted to my TikTok account. Although I made the change in the way I completed my DA, the research collection didn’t necessarily change.
With this new direction in mind for the majority of this semester, I was able to focus on producing content for my TikTok account at a consistent level. During this DA process, I wanted to record the progress I was making as this DA is not only about the future of the beauty industry, but also MY future in the beauty industry and trying to find where I fit in within the niche.
I began my DA with the intention to research different areas that would impact the beauty industry and create TikTok videos to embed into the blog posts that discussed a topic in the blog post, which is what I did for my first blog post; What’s Trending within the Cosmetics Industry?
In this blog post, I decided to talk about the trends we should see introduced that will impact the future of the industry. Essentially my blog post looked at the predictions that were being named as the new trends to come or look out for. These trends to summarise the blog post include the discussion on the new makeup trend, the “IT girl” makeup, consisting of natural, dewy and fresh-looking makeup.
To go along with this blog post, I filmed a 4 part “No Makeup Makeup Look” video series showing TikTok my take on the “IT girl” makeup look. In these videos, I also tested some of the popular products that have been commonly found within this beauty trend to test how well they work.
I observed my niche and how viewers interacted with my content and discovered that one of the four videos had a significantly larger amount of interaction than any other video from the mini-series. My assumption is because the first video in the series focused on my base routine for the makeup look whilst using some TikTok favourite products. Complexion products are currently the most popular types of products.
The second predicted trend was the identification of skincare or skincare ingredients and benefits to be introduced into our cosmetic products. This trend is something I have not only loved to research but have found to personally impact my purchasing choices already in 2022. This is certainly a predicted trend that is coming to fruition due to the demand from consumers.
It was after this blog post I decided that I would reduce the number of blog posts and change the focus to TikTok as this is inevitably where the future of most industries will be found for industries to reach their audiences.
Having been part of this industry since 2014, having seen the youtube era grow and fall and grow again, I have noticed youtube take a significant hit and lose its viewers. This is because of the introduction to shorter form videos such as those found on TikTok which show us how the attention economy has truly begun to take over where it is evident the attention of users using the platform is the product. Attention has become the wanted commodity (Bhargava & Velasquez 2020) by the beauty brands and therefore these brands are ensuring that ads are in direct contact with potential customers.
This realisation led to the second blog post; Who is Changing the Game in the Beauty Industry? My interest peaked as to who has my attention when it comes to the beauty industry? This post delved into the companies who own our beloved beauty brands, social media influencers and social media. To summarise, influencers and social media have grabbed our trust and therefore our attention, ultimately influencing our purchasing decisions. This second blog post had a 2-part TikTok video consisting of the beauty products that influencers influenced me to purchase over the years because I trusted their opinions and reviews and hadn’t been let down.
In my third and final post of this series of blog posts, I wanted to mention my future within the industry. For me, my involvement in the beauty and cosmetics industry is inevitable. Working in some form whether that is in content creation, marketing for a beauty brand, product development, or even just as simple as supporting my favourite beauty brands through my purchases, I will always be involved and will continue to be an active part of the beauty industry.
This blog post saw me show my growth results since beginning my DA and staying more consistent on my profile. Where do I fit in the beauty industry? Will I be a part of it in the future? was my most personal post of the set of 3 posts for this DA. All my DAs have a personal element and for me, this specific post felt the most personal. I felt free enough to open up and speak my truth about what I have always felt was my calling, that is content creation. For me, I hope my future can see me grow in the beauty content creation world.
Through this DA I wanted to be open and honest and be myself. I didn’t want to care about other people and low key in my heart, I knew I wanted to grow my confidence through creating content. Being able to see those who view my profile is nerve-racking but interesting. It showed who supported me through my DA but also made me realise those who simply do not believe that the future is in their hands and through social media. It was during the time that my account had significant growth, that I realised the power I could have with consistency.
Power is always in your hands and the future can change or remain on its course through the power you give to it. For me, this DA was helpful to give me the opportunity to not only observe the future of the industry but also observe the interactions occurring. It is safe to say that although youtube consumption has seen a decrease in the beauty industry, it has certainly seen a large increase over on TikTok.
My DA has helped me this past semester realise that most of the future of this industry is based on predictions that trends and consumer demands either become permanent changes or are a short term trend that comes and goes as quickly as they began. The beauty industry is thorough and planned out. Beauty brands know when and what they will launch to consumers and influencers months if not years in advance and with the continuation of technological improvements in this industry, it is likely that what we know as the “beauty standards” of today as the ideal, will inevitably change as brands grow and so too their audience.
The lecture content this semester had a few key areas that had a connection or a connection could be made to the weekly topic. The trajectory of the industry is evidently focused on new innovations and the continued use of social media for brand awareness through the observations I made as an active member of TikTok.
All beauty brands have a unique calendar for their product launches, something only a futurist would be able to assist in its planning. Predictions and assumptions are made in a way that almost every brand in the industry will launch a similar style of product around the same time. I cover this in my second blog post. The future of the beauty industry will also see and has been predicted since 2020, the more common use of AI technology, colour matching foundations to our faces or simply applying lipstick without having to physically apply the lipstick. This is seeing significant growth since the beginning of the pandemic as consumers were unable to go to their local stores to test the products.
Although our futures don’t always go as we plan them, one thing I know for sure is my involvement in the beauty industry. Some way or another, I hope to find myself in a position where I am able to do what I love each and every day within this industry. The future of beauty is one to certainly watch out for.
The beauty industry has evolved at such a tremendous pace that it can become overwhelming and expensive to keep up with. It is important to know who is in control of the industry to understand how this will affect the future of the beauty industry. Are consumers in charge of the beauty products that are released? Is social media? How about influencers? Or more interestingly, are the brands the ones with all the control?
The importance of social media for the beauty and cosmetics industry is undoubtedly crucial for a beauty brand. One negative review can cause rippling effects throughout the entire beauty community and influence the purchasing decisions consumers make. I know I have been thoroughly influenced by many influencers and their choices but the marketing of a product, from the campaigns, photoshoots and even the packaging of a product, has had an impact on my consumer purchasing decisions.
Is it cute enough? Does the brand align with the collective consumer wants and needs? Will everyone have a perfect match with the shade range options? These are all questions that influence my unique purchasing decisions.
Global sales of health and beauty products are expected to soar 73% from 2016 to 2024, from $432 billion to $750 billion, according to Inkwood Research, a Boston-based research firm (A HEALTH AND BEAUTY COMPANY’S GUIDE, 2020). Currently, the industry is worth $287.94 billion dollars, and with each year to come, an additional $100 billion is to be brought into the industry (Howarth 2022). But really, who controls the industry? And why is this important to know?
Let’s get into the specifics. There are 9 megacompanies that own the majority of the beauty brands we know and love.
Estee Lauder Companies
Procter & Gamble
Johnson & Johnson
These mega-companies are the ones with the ultimate control. They fight for sales and of course, each brand under their company is set to compete with each other but also with the brands from other mega-companies.
Ever wonder why all of a sudden every brand has a similar product? For example, from January- to the current day of April we have seen multiple versions of serum or lightweight, natural coverage/ skinlike foundations and in general a large influx of complexion products? Most likely because these megacompanies have acquired or developed a formula and have made changes to the formula to ensure that their brands can keep up to date and compete for market share.
Consistent launches of the same product have been consistent since these megacompanies acquired these beauty brands. Don’t get me wrong, it’s nice to have variety and options, but when is enough?
Beauty launches happen almost every day and with these consistent launches of new products, new reviews of a product from influencers are released to the public to decide if a product is worth purchasing. Not to mention, the continued desire to discover and test new products to up your beauty game is unbelievably expensive to keep up with.
It is in my opinion that the consumer has no control over what beauty brands launch because the power of marketing from beauty brands has created the wants and needs the consumer is looking for. Now I’m in full understanding that this is the point of marketing but shouldn’t we, the public who spends their hard-earned money be the ones whose voices are heard when we request a particular type of product?
On the other hand, social media influencers are the ones who hold the most power with purchasing decisions because of the impact they leave their audiences. Social media influencers drive brand engagement and brand loyalty (Lim et al. 2017). The trust a consumer places on an influencer directly affects if they trust the beauty product in question. This trust can consequently increase product sales of the product (Cooley & Parks-Yancy 2019). Studies have found that social media and influencers drive almost an equal amount of online and in-store sales (Barnes 2015).
Myself, I’m most influenced by social media beauty influencers. There are a particular few who I trust so wholeheartedly and have not yet let me down or made me regret purchasing a product. Why do I leave my trust in these people? The simple answer is that have yet to recommend a product I’ve not loved and therefore a solid foundation of trust has been built. If Jaclyn Hill, Kathleen Lights, Shaaanxo, Mikayla Nogueira, or Allie Glines has not mentioned the product, would I purchase it? Honestly, it would depend on my personal interest in the product if I will seek out reviews. If I find enough positive feedback from other influencers, then I may or may not be inclined to purchase the product, but if any of the women I trust mention the product is incredible, you can pretty much count on me to purchase the product at some point. It’s truly their personality and if I feel they’re genuine in their reviews that allows me to trust their opinion.
Loyalty and trust are always qualities we look out for in our daily life why wouldn’t you look out for them when it comes to your beauty products?
Below are a series of videos posted to my Tik Tok account showcasing the products influencers have influenced me into purchasing as well as the marketing of a product that influenced me to purchase.
The future of the beauty industry is truly heading towards influencers and beauty brands collaborating further. This collaboration whether it is paid or not does and will continue to influence purchasing decisions. In turn, this will affect the popularity of a beauty brand and in my opinion will continue to showcase us who in the beauty industry truly has the ultimate control.
Lim, J., M. Radzol, J. Cheah, and M. Wong. 2017. The impact of social media Influencers on purchase intention and the mediation effect of customer attitude. Asian Journal of Business Research 7, 21–30. [Crossref], [Google Scholar]
Barnes, N. 2015. EWOM drives social commerce: A survey of millennials in US and abroad. Journal of Marketing Development and Competitiveness 9 (2):36–46. [Google Scholar]