Black Friday 2020: The Best Beauty Campaigns

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Like it or not, Black Friday is one of the biggest dates in the marketing calendar and, despite the disruption of Covid, Black Friday 2020 was no exception. The UK was predicted to spend a monumental £6 billion in the Black Friday sales this year, a figure even higher than 2019’s estimated £5.6 billion.

Black Friday for Beauty Brands: How Did the Industry Do?

When we look at 2020’s Black Friday statistics, the beauty industry really shines. Health and beauty was one of the top-performing sectors for the retail holiday this year, seeing a 22% revenue increase compared to Black Friday 2019. This trend sits in line with our analysis of the beauty industry throughout 2020, which has shown sustained higher search levels for beauty and skincare.

Not only did the beauty industry boom during the first Covid lockdown, but higher online search and purchase levels have remained as the months have worn on, proving the opportunity to increase profits in the beauty industry is ripe for the taking.

Read more: ‘Is Skincare Still Booming?’

However, the tide is turning when it comes to how beauty and lifestyle brands mark Black Friday, and it’s no longer just about profit. Black Friday marketing strategy has changed and now, more than ever, brands are choosing less sales-focused campaigns. From embracing the idea of ‘Green Friday’ with climate-positive campaigns, to launching charitable intiatives and running giveaways, the Black Friday landscape is diversifying.

So, which beauty brands really stood out when it came to Black Friday 2020? With the discount weekend now behind us, we’ve gathered together our favourite creative Black Friday campaigns. Who knows – they may inspire you for 2021.

3. Kohl’s – Giftcard Giveaway

For Kohl’s, Black Friday social media campaigns are the main event. As well as offering the usual discounts, Kohl’s typically also runs giftcard giveaways and shareable promotions across its social channels, offering prizes in exchange for engagement and follows. This year, the giftcard giveaway took centre stage on Cyber Monday.

Offering low-value prizes like this is a great strategy for growing your audience, at least in the short term. The task of holding onto the boosted audience numbers is more of a challenge. However, maintaining a strong social media plan and consistently posting high-quality content is a solid strategy and can really pay dividends.

2. Spectrum – Black Friday in Colour

Vegan and cruelty-free beauty brand Spectrum did as their name suggests and added a spectrum of colour to Black Friday this year. Starting with ‘Pink Wednesday’ on Wednesday 25 November, Spectrum’s week-long event featured colourful discounts on a range of brand new beauty bundles, launched specifically for the event. While there was still a focus on discounts, the main draw of Spectrum’s Black Friday campaign was the product launch element. Spectrum paired their on-site activity with social media giveaways, which helped build a buzz around the brand.

1. Deciem: KNOWvember

Deciem, the parent company of cult makeup brand The Ordinary, opted for a month-long event instead of the frantic weekend we’re used to. Dubbed “KNOWvember”, the campaign aimed to highlight the importance of conscious consumption, with the idea that “skincare purchases should be based on education over impulse”.

Deciem created a mix of educational resources throughout November, from skincare routines for different skin types to Q&As with product experts. All of these resources are still available on the Deciem website, so the content could potentially attract good traffic long after the Black Friday buzz has gone.

How Will Black Friday 2021 Look?

Since the US holiday was adopted in the UK, Black Friday has been dominated by brands out-competing each other to offer the biggest discounts. However, the campaigns above prove that showstopping sales are no longer the only Black Friday marketing strategy.

As consumers become more conscious of the ethical and environmental impacts of their purchases, it’s likely that ‘anti Black Friday’ campaigns, charitable initiatives and cause marketing will become more common – and personally we think that’s pretty wonderful.

And, while you may not opt for a a fully anti Black Friday campaign (like Patagonia’s newsworthy decision to donate 100% of its Black Friday profits), switching up your Black Friday marketing strategy could keep you ahead of the curve, and give you some newsworthy content to share in the process.