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The Beauty Industry Decoded: How to Instagram Like The Pro's

Inside a Glossier Store

Few brands have gained such cult-like status so quickly as American beauty brand Glossier. Emerging from a lifestyle blog written by one time Vogue employee Emily Weiss, it's now spawned a line of highly relatable and totally lust-worthy beauty and skincare products loved by its legion of loyal Instagram followers. When it comes to Instagramming like a Pro, this beauty brand has got it nailed so let's lift the lid and decode what they're doing that's just so darn great.

How the Numbers Stack Up

For a start, they've already notched up over 2 million followers on Instagram.

That's quite an army or rather a people-powered, beauty ecosystem tribe as they call themselves. The brand is all about beauty products inspired by real life and is a highly edited and carefully curated set of everyday skincare and makeup must-have's. Posting at least once every day, Instagram is the cornerstone of the brand's overall social media strategy. This overflows into Weiss' own personal Instagram account affording a real "behind the scenes up close and personal" look into the Founders world as well as linking to the blog which started it all, Into The Gloss.

That account itself has a none too shabby 746K followers while Emily's own Instagram has chalked up an impressive 470k followers. Combined that's a reach of over 3.2 million. That represents a lot of skincare lovers!

What does Glossier do Differently?

Instagram is a Priority, not an After Thought.

Channeling their effort into Instagram is a tactical decision and one which Weiss supported from day dot. Social media was never an afterthought, an adjunct to the overall business. It was woven into the DNA and very fabric of the company from inception.

That strategy has paid dividends five years down the line. In fact, before a single product was even launched, Glossier had already amassed 13,000 followers and posted over 125 pictures on Instagram, more than piquing the consumers' interest in what was to follow. The brand aesthetic and identity was solidified and memorable before there was even a product ready to purchase. Now that is smart marketing. You only have to step inside one of their stores to see how the importance of Instagram curses through the company's veins. The stores are swoon-worthy and intentionally designed for the taking and sharing of photos.

Q: What you can learn from this; get proactive with your social media strategy and build something cohesive from the ground up.

The Brand is all about Authenticity

Cats of Glossier

Glossier intrinsically understand who their customer is and have gone about presenting themselves in the same way. As the saying goes, like creates like, and this brand appreciates that real women want to look good but are also time poor so require solutions that work quickly and that don't require hours preening in front of a mirror to achieve. Their tone of voice is friendly and approachable, never elitist and the grid as a whole is relatable as though you're following a friend rather than a big beauty brand. It can be challenging to get the balance right and not to become too overly promotional, but they seem to have it nailed.

They have also interestingly shied away from the super influencer marketing route an instead invested more heavily on their legion of devoted fans and followers, regularly gifting new products to superfine. A strategy that guarantees engagement and continued loyalty.

Q: What you can learn from this; authenticity and relatability foster high levels of loyalty and engagement.

Ask and thou shalt receive!

Keeping it Authentic on the Glossier Grid

Anyone trying to get to grips with Instagram knows that it's all about engagement and not just fantastic content. Brands like Glossier understand that and explicitly get their followers engaged in the debate. They make it a company policy to respond to comments and to also leave plenty of compliments.

This strategy has worked well for them and even led to the development of new products, like their best-selling skin care line, Milky Jelly Cleanser. Apparently, followers shelfies were distinctly missing a cleanser and a debate ensued about which Hollywood star would best suit playing a cleanser in a movie! The vote was unanimous with pale-skinned flawless beauty Emma Stone winning for the ladies and Eddie Redmayne for the men.

Q: What you can learn from this; social media is about engaging, not broadcasting. Connect with your consumers and take time out to communicate with them.

They really understand how to use quality #hashtags.


Since they started on Instagram, Glossier is one of the many brands that has really got to grips with its hashtag strategy and created a whole series that are now uniquely associated with the brand. These hashtags serve to create even more valuable user-generated content which the brand can cleverly tap into for its own grid. Do a quick search of #glossierpink and see how many results it returns. We just did and it pulled up 21,668, all beautiful images which perfectly match the brands aesthetic at zero marketing cost to them. Now that really is how to Instagram will a Pro!

Q: What you can learn from this; if you haven't yet created your own unique set of brand hashtags what are you waiting for? Don't forget to add them to your own posts and watch as all that lovely user-generated content flows in!

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