Indeed, the report, compiled by digital research player L2, indicates that those beauty brands that do not promote on these platforms are missing a trick.
“With email lists and social communities that dwarf those of the brands they distribute, Sephora and Ulta provide valuable visibility and real estate for brands,” the report asserts.
“By tailoring merchandising tactics to the unique content strategies of these retailers, brands can magnify their presence across email and social content for both platforms.”
‘Dwarfing’ the brands
According to the report, entitled ‘Beauty: Sephora and Ulta Content’, both Sephora and Ulta have managed to develop digital presences that have a reach that far outstrips anything individual beauty brands can manage.
“Savvy investments in digital have allowed specialty beauty retailers like Ulta and Sephora to grow in both market share and influence,” the report says.
“These retailers dwarf the brands they distribute in terms of reach and visibility, with social communities and email sizes more than 20 times larger than those of the average brand.”
Benefits that brands can enjoy when they partner with these specialty retailers, according to the report, include:
Valuable real estate
“However,” cautions the report, “the two platforms are not interchangeable and effective merchandising strategies must be tailored to the retailers’ respective strengths.”
For Sephora, deluxe samples, loyalty content and exclusive products drive engagement for brands, whereas on Ulta, consumers respond best to promotions.
The report notes that indie players seem to be benefiting most from the potential of these specialty retailers at present, with independent brands accounting for the leading share of brand appearances in both Sephora and Ulta’s social content.
In terms of figures, Sephora boasts an average of nearly 500k readers per email, Ulta has just over 145k, while the average beauty brand brings in just 75.3k.