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BEAUTY INSIDERS MEET AT HBA EXPO

Posted by 06.20.13

One of the great things about being a beauty editor is meeting the movers and shakers of the industry—the product developers, marketing executives, and public relations pros that make sure the greatest and latest makeup and skincare get to stores and shelves.

In addition to press events, editors get to hobnob with beautymakers at trade shows and industry events. This week, the annual HBA Global Expo took place in New York City at the Jacob Javits Center.

The show comprises product, ingredient, and packaging exhibits, as well as a roster of educational seminars. That’s where the hobnobbing begins, and in fact Beautyinthebag’s very own editor in chief Wendy Lewis conducted one of the panels.

Beauty Goes Social: The Link Between Content and Consumer Behavior explored the ever-growing importance of social media for beauty companies. In addition to Lewis, panelists included Sandra Evans, director of interactive marketing for Actifirm, and Catherine Littlefield, director of branding and public relations, Alchimie Forever.

“Consumers—they have the power,” said Lewis in her comprehensive introductory remarks. Social media has really changed the way beauty brands interact with the people who buy their products. Shoppers have a voice and companies listen.

And beauty marketers know that any ole post just won’t suffice. “People want to be entertained in social media,” said Littlefield. Marketers are well aware that you as a shopper need a reason to follow a brand on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, etc., etc. Giveaways, coupons, flash sales, and discounts are all part of the plan.

All sounds too good to be true, doesn’t it? In a way, it is. “Social media is about engagement, it’s about content, it’s about relationships,” said Evans. While sales aren’t necessarily a brand’s immediate reason for starting the online conversation, it is definitely the ultimate reason.

The social media panel was just one in two days worth of presentations. The FIT Capstone Panel: Beauty in the Digital Age – Digital Analytics looked at how product development and marketing depend more and more on data sourced from all sorts of places. For example, in the future we may be ingesting sensors that will provide medical, health, and product usage information.

As for new products on the immediate horizon, look out for anti-aging treatments that contain bee venom, one of the newest developments, according to panelists on the Cutting Edge, Innovative Products and ingredients in Skin Care.

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