Professor of Communications specializing in Non-Profit | Professional | Social | Sports | Strategic à Reinhardt University
For years, fans of BB have used traditional and social media to lobby for the return of lip colors that are no longer in production. In February 2012, BB launched a Facebook campaign to let fans do just that.
1. Marchant, Stephanie
IMC 619 Week 7
As a cosmetics company, Bobbi Brown’s (BB) website has to appeal to two types of
consumers: the consumer making an impulse buy; and those looking for that perfect
purchase. The first woman wants to complete her transaction as quickly as possible,
spending a minimum of time on the site; the second will spend up to weeks researching,
comparing, and testing products before she settles on one that satisfies her. (Morgan,
2012) BB has done a beautiful job of accommodating both with a keen understanding
of the different modes of shopping taking place in their market.
To pique the curiosity of the browsers and digital window shoppers, BB’s website is
stocked with an enormous amount of content, including before-and-afters, YouTube
videos, and “How Tos” from a carefully selected team of makeup artists. What sets
BB’s site apart from its competitors is the successful translation of its brand values and
how they apply to their customers. With copy and imagery that play off the BB aesthetic
perfectly, the site invites site visitors to see how the products align with their and
personalities, and even how they can participate in the promotion on their own. BB also
has a healthy number of regular customers who want to replenish their supplies quickly,
a customer need reflected in the website. While their website is expansive, and text-
heavy, BB’s Facebook page is much more visual, highlighting a product and including –
even encouraging – reviews and questions from fans.
Figure 1 Bobbi Brown Website
2. Marchant, Stephanie
IMC 619 Week 7
For years, fans of BB have used traditional and social media to lobby for the return of lip
colors that are no longer in production. In February 2012, BB launched a Facebook
campaign to let fans do just that. The campaign kicked off with a video message from
founder and CCO Bobbi Brown, inviting fans to vote for their favorite from a list of the 10
most frequently requested colors. Voting was opened to consumers in the six countries
Bobbi Brown Cosmetics sells to online — the U.S., UK, Korea, Japan, Germany and
Australia. (Indvik, 2012) Adding to the fervor was the fact that the winning products
would not be available in stores. Wine, the shade of Bobbi Brown lipstick that had the
most votes in the United States, was available only online via a Facebook link in
October. (Boncompagni, 2012) The company also plans to reintroduce other
discontinued products, including blush and eye shadow, in the future.
The campaign was a great example of how to give fans ownership, engaging with them
in a place they already gather to discuss the brand, and then rewarding their input with
a chance to buy something exclusive. Currently the BB Facebook page has over
930,000 likes, with over 35,000 individuals “talking about” the page. Their holiday
promotion - “Gift of Glam” – has been shared by close to 1,000 fans on Facebook.
(Bobbi Brown, 2013)Their Twitter page has over 214,000 followers. (BobbiBrown
Figure 2 Sample Posts from Facebook Page
BB wants to teach and inspire women to be their very best. Whether through video
tutorials or quick tips, the coach is always teaching, and giving her community
something. The BB Facebook page is a lot less about their specific products, and much
more about how to apply amazing eye makeup, or tips for a perfect "beach look."
3. Marchant, Stephanie
IMC 619 Week 7
There is measurable value in using Facebook to acquire fans, engage fans and drive
traffic between Facebook and a company’s website. Studies show significant increases
in website traffic once customers became a fan of their Facebook page and in the
frequency of visits to their website by these fans. These fans are more engaged than a
typical website visitor.
The difficulty arises from the fact that the world is a very heterogeneous place, where
social technology provides end customers with a near endless combination of ways to
consume information about products and services.
Building a successful marketing framework revolves around four key steps:
1. Listen — By utilizing both internal data as well as third party data sources, there
is a plethora of information available to help understand specific, evolving
customer preferences. In this case, BB heard their fans roar about their favorite
products being discontinued, and took action.
2. Analyze — With the customer-centric vision in mind, segment the consumer
base to understand how channel preferences differ by individual. Knowing that
the largest segment of social media users are women, BB employed Facebook
(and other channels) to reach them.
3. Plan — Use this understanding along with marketing best practices to build
coordinated campaigns and strategy. For instance, creating a promotion built
around saving a favorite product as well as demonstrating how to use these
4. Speak — Interact with your customer by customizing your strategy specifically to
channel preferences, leveraging state-of-the-art tools to provide a seamless
cross-channel experience. BB monitors their Facebook page and regularly
answers questions from fans.
It’s easy to obsess over the latest social media craze or technology, but in doing so it
also becomes easy to lose site of the end-goal: making a lasting, meaningful connection
with customers. By utilizing the steps above, the foundation necessary to fuel a
customer obsession exists.
BB’s website and the use of Facebook is successful because they foster relationships
with their fan base. As a result, the brand has turned its digital commerce operations
into sites of exploration and connection, rather than just pure transaction.
4. Marchant, Stephanie
IMC 619 Week 7
Bobbi Brown. (2013, December 7). Retrieved from Facebook:
BobbiBrown Cosmetics. (2013, December 7). Retrieved from Twitter:
Boncompagni, T. (2012, May 1). Social Media Breathes Life Into Shelved Products.
Retrieved from The New York Times:
Indvik, L. (2012, January 30). Bobbi Brown Launches Facebook Campaign to Revive
Discontinued Cosmetics. Retrieved from Mashable:
Kerpen, C. (2013, June 10). 6 Best Things Companies Do on Facebook Today.
Retrieved from Inc: http://www.inc.com/carrie-kerpen/best-facebook-company-
Morgan, V. (2012, January 30). Bobbi Brown uses Facebook to crowdsource lip colour
revival. Retrieved from eConsultancy: http://econsultancy.com/us/blog/8843-