Rimmel London needed to break into a cut-throat U.S. beauty market. Rimmel is a household name in the U.K. with Kate Moss and Georgia May Jagger as the well-known faces of the brand. However, the Millennials in the U.S. don’t know who they are, and Rimmel’s U.K. ad campaign didn’t resonate with them. Knowing that the target audience are social media junkies, Rimmel briefed a revamp of their U.S. social media presence. They wanted to stand out from the likes of Maybelline, L’Oreal and NYX by playing up their British heritage…
Catherine was appointed Creative Director for the Rimmel U.S. account, armed with almost 20 years’ experience in the business, plus the added bonus that she was from London.
Catherine came up with a creative strategy to communicate Rimmel’s edgy, fun British heritage while adhering to all the beauty category mandatories. Showcase colour, packaging recognition for when the audience goes into store, product benefit, and unique selling point.
New creative direction was put in place including; showcasing product as large as possible in shot, arranging product in a diagonal formation, (when and where possible), as a subtle nod to the Union Jack British flag, joining in trending social media conversations, but only when relevant to the brand. For example, humorous beauty quotes are consistently popular on social, so this was a good fit for Rimmel, as humor is something that the British are known for. Quotes were sprinkled throughout Instagram with a colourful look-and-feel, and different font each time, as a nod to quirky and rebellious British style. Products combined with props told visual stories to join in with trending conversations. For example, a post was shot for Watermelon Day simply using seasonal lipstick shades and slices of watermelon in the shape of The Union Jack.
In the beauty category, Instagram is a hungry beast. The audience wants to see images every day. So, Catherine and her team came up with a social calendar every month. On a small budget, they also had to come up with a way of creating these images daily. Catherine started out with one in-house photographer, one Cannon 5D, one battery powered light and a meeting room. She worked closely with the Rimmel team, based in The Empire State building, to get closer to what they wanted conceptually…and also, to meet the high standards of the beauty world. So, little by little, the small production became a much more suitable larger production with an in-house studio and proper controlled lighting. Catherine built a bigger team with a production manager, designers and re-touchers. There was a daily in-house shoot schedule and appointed photographer. However, budget didn’t allow for prop stylist, so concepts were tailored to a more simple look and feel.
Each post was hash tagged to maximize viewing, and where relevant questions were posed to engage the audience.
Following the revamp, Rimmel’s Instagram followers increased by 40,000 in less than 3 months. Within the year, the followers had increased by 164,000.