Like Gen Z purchasing power is growing, marketers of businesses of all sizes are looking for innovative ways to connect with this audience and build lasting customer relationships.
Not surprisingly, social media platforms are the best way to connect with this generation, including today’s teenagers and 20s. But marketing to Gen Zers means much more than just posting beautiful pictures and memes.
So what does it take to stand out from this valuable audience and connect with it in 2021?
One brand that has acquired the marketing art of Gen Z is Blume, a fast-growing brand of skin, body and periodic care products designed to break down borders and break taboos.
In this interview you will hear directly Janice Cheng, Blume’s brand and community leader and find out:
- How to create a brand that unites Gen Zd
- How to market and sell on social media
- The key to understanding Gen Z preferences on social media
- Successful strategies to use when marketing to Gen Z.
This post is part of the cached social media series #BufferBrandSpotlight, which focuses on people helping to build notable brands through social media, community building, content creation, and branding.
This series was born from Instagram stories, which means you can watch the original interview from our featured page @ buffer Instagram profile.
Tell us more about yourself! What is Blume all about and what is your role there?
My name is Janice and I’m in Vancouver! I am the brand leader of Blume – a fast growing brand of skin, body and periodic care products that aims to break boundaries and break taboos. I joined the team in June 2019 as the 3rd employee and EA of our founders Taran & Bunny. Now I’ve been in this brand role for almost 9 months.
Why do you think your Gen Z audience associates you with your brand?
Gen Zers are conscious (smart) consumers and the most connected generation ever. Growing up on social media, they want transparency, publicity and looking for brands that match their values. I think Blume controls all these boxes in a truly authentic way! From day one, we have been more than just our products. Blume breaks the stigma by holding conversations on extremely common but still taboo topics like acne, puberty, periods and sex work. As I am sure most of us know, these are problems that also affect adults, so a large part of our audience is thousands of years old.
Gen Zers are conscious (smart) consumers and the most connected generation ever. Growing up on social media, they want transparency, publicity and looking for brands that match their values.
We are also a brand that cares. We launched thestatesofsexed.com, The Future World Shapers Award (created for Gen Z change makers) and generally produce engaging and sharing content. More importantly, we prioritize using our platform to leverage the voice of our community and speak on issues that matter to us; this includes climate change, the movement of the Black Lives Matter and even our pandemic response. Our audience teaches us a lot and most of all they are our friends! It’s all translated uniformly through our channel through our brand voice.
Tell us about your recent social media campaign. What made it so successful?
We are only about 2.5 years old, but one of my fave moments was inside our house Blume stands for skin campaign (a campaign designed to be firm on your skin is not defined and is not limited by our physical appearance or bumps and blemishes on the skin). We were only about five people then (now half of our team) and it was so much fun because it came from our hearts. It quickly and organically attracted attention Attract and Daily Mail UK. Sometimes metrics are complicated for this type of campaign. Let’s say someone comes across this campaign and finds new strength and courage in their natural skin. Although feelings cannot be quantified, reviews and customer testimonials are invaluable to our team.
BUT! Defrosting (our best-selling acne treatment) continues to be a favorite of our community and such campaigns Celebrate the skin strengthen it. Ultimately, our social media aims to increase engagement, and this campaign achieved that for us. In the new year, we have some of our biggest campaigns ahead of us! So stay tuned.
Where can you find inspiration for Blume’s social media content?
Recently, TikTok has (obviously) a lot of community sites like Girlboss and also memes. We have the #inspo Slack channel where we share the things we see in our feeds and explore the pages and what’s circulating in our own friend’s groups! Pro Tip: Start a #inspo channel just for yourself or your team.
How does Blume use user-generated content to connect with its Gen Z audience?
The community is at the heart of us all. In addition to our products, it adds value to Gen Z for us, and user-generated content (UGC) is a huge part of it. Using UGC is more effective than using traditional models or lifestyle images because UGC is made by real people in our community – reflecting real skin. This is the best way to communicate with this audience!
Using UGC is more effective than using traditional models or lifestyle images because UGC is made by real people in our community – reflecting real skin.
There is also General Zers so creative because content production is a different nature for them, so working together is so nice. I like to look at our tagged posts every week and see how people receive their shelves and natural skin. We give them complete creative freedom! So instead of believing what we have to say about our products, you should believe in our community through UGC, their captions, reviews, and experiences.
How does Blume embed UGC, customer testimonials and reviews in all of its marketing channels?
We have an incredibly small team of two who keep the rest of the team, especially marketing, up to date with all the queries, trends and topics of the week. For example, our defrosting before and after shaving has always been very effective for us, as a photo is equal to a thousand words.
Especially in skin care clean beauty care, it is really important for us to pay attention to the effectiveness of the product and how our products actually work. We use before / after photos and other UGCs in ads, Instagram story features, and email newsletters. Of course with permission.
During the usual week, we try to post UGC and / or testimonials on our social media about 3-4 times.
Especially in skin care clean beauty care, it is really important for us to pay attention to the effectiveness of the product and how our products actually work.
What are Blume’s most successful sales platforms and why?
Definitely Instagram – still breaking the TikTok code. Ultimately, Gen Zers are the benchmarks and will determine the future. Something can come and go overnight, so we need to be quickly reversible, adapted and accomplished. We can plan anything we want, but our best-performing posts often tend to be product-based. If we had a planned Meltdown post on a day when the world really needs more empathy and love, we would exchange that magazine for an instant post or sign up.
What do you recommend for brands that want to start selling on social media?
Make a list of the brands you like and research the reasons thoroughly. For Blume, the main criterion for selling on social media is based on value; in our marketing, we focus on educational content about our products and brand, community building through UGC campaigns and partnerships, and aesthetic shareable graphics.
Also, get it. PEAL. TIKK-TAKK. Whether you start your own brand page or just get in touch with Gen Z culture, I worth promising you. Here are three simple things you can get started right away: write a copy like a human (not a robot), enjoy emoticons, and start following people to bring your eyes to your page!
For Blume, the main criterion for selling on social media is based on value; in our marketing, we focus on educational content about our products and brand, community building through UGC campaigns and partnerships, and aesthetic shareable graphics.
How to keep up with Gen Z trends?
I personally follow the Gen Z brands I admire, read a lot of Glossy and Beauty Independent and ask our fierce Influencer Lead Lead 411 about what’s cool and what’s not. I also used TikTok scrolling 4 hours a day (lol) for simultaneous entertainment and market research.
What is your favorite Blume product and why?
I would like to say Defrosting because it’s everyone’s first place and I’ve had a lot of stress acne until 2020, BUT my forerunner is definitely Hug me, our natural deodorant. Coincidental: Probiotics, our secret ingredient, are so well adapted to my body that I hardly need a deodorant anymore. It’s also odorless, so I recommend it to everyone. I may be biased, but these two are also my favorites because these names make copywrites so much fun to play. ?
Thanks for bluming with us, buffer friends! ❤️
We hope this interview with Janice will help you start or redouble your social media efforts. You can watch Blume on Instagram here!
Do you have any questions for Janice? Feel free to answer the questions in the Twitter post below and Janice or someone from the Buffer team will reach them as soon as possible.