Legacy beauty brands — Covergirl, L’Oréal, Lancôme, to name a few — have long ruled when it comes to market share and prestige. But today’s digital landscape has created fertile ground for challenger brands that know how to maximize social media to resonate with and build invested communities. At the October 30th Beauty Biz Roundtable, Facilitators discussed how new brands are created at the speed of light and how their digital agility has forced industry giants to shift to keep up. Naturally, these changes affect the way companies think about talent. Here are three key ways the digital beauty revolution is impacting recruiting across consumer-focused industries:
1. CALLING ALL SOCIAL MEDIA SPECIALISTS
Just four or five years ago, an established beauty brand might have employed a Social Media Manager to handle all of its social needs. This kind of candidate was presumably a recent college grad, solely tasked with posting content. Today, this same company likely has an entire department dedicated to the practice, overseen by a leader with seniorlevel experience. Not only have these teams grown, the roles within them are becoming more differentiated — think specialized positions for paid social, digital acquisition, email marketing, community management, and beyond.
As customers continue to interact with and relate to brands on social, positions dedicated to digital interactions will not only continue to grow but become increasingly specialized. The net effect has been a significant shortage of talent capable of doing the work that brands are seeking and thus inflated salaries for the talent who can deliver. Our guess is that as Beauty continues to grow here in Southern California, other categories like Fashion, Lifestyle, and Design Goods will likely see an increase in salaries for these positions as competition for this talent increases across all categories.
2. ALL EYES ON PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT
Beauty brands have exploded in Southern California over the last few years and new brands seem to pop up on a weekly basis. Think Lime Crime, Dollar Shave Club, and Colour Pop to name a few. Coupling the growth of the category along with the digital first nature of many Beauty brands, means we see an incredible increase in the amount of trend-driven product created to meet the demands of savvy digital customers who have many options from which to choose. Once a brand wins a customer, they want to continue seeding that acquisition with more and more product. The effect has been a talent grab for Product Developers with specialties in Skincare, Haircare, Color Cosmetics, Bath and Body, even Nailcare. With so much demand for Product Development talent, salaries continue to increase and only the companies who are willing to up the stakes are winning. Otherwise, we see many of these roles staying vacant. Although Beauty Product Development is rather insular, our guess is that other categories of fast consumer products are seeing the same strain with recruiting for these roles.
3. COVETING CUSTOMER INSIGHTS
It’s no surprise “data” has become a buzzword in recent years; understanding customer demographics, shopping patterns, and habits is invaluable for every company. But as digital has evolved, so have the many ways a brand can learn about its shoppers. More and more organizations are investing in understanding their communities, reflected in an uptick in market research roles dedicated exclusively to data and consumer insights. And, while these positions previously required IT and programming skills, consumer data can now be gathered automatically, making the job more about interpreting data and generating strategic recommendations rather than collecting it.
As new technologies and data providers like Dash Hudson, Tribe Dynanmics, Optimove, and Sprout Social continue to bring us stronger analytical tools and more efficient customer feedback loops, we will continue to see companies seeking savvy and strategic data analysts with an eye for insight generation.
Frances Mazur is President and CEO of Mazur Group. For more information on Beauty recruiting or Mazur Group, please visit: MAZURGROUPLA.com or call (424) 280- 4390.