Prioritising authenticity: how Elemis increased revenue through creator commerce

Off the back of a super-charged 2020s, Elemis had a focus on boosting sales for its best-selling lines via increased traffic to ELEMIS.com. The team wanted to embrace a more consistent ongoing influencer strategy as part of its marketing mix.

Elemis has always taken a full-funnel approach when it came to creators but wanted to advance its program to match the current consumer market values of transparent, authentic and natural content. The luxury skincare brand partnered with creator commerce solution provider LTK on a brand ambassador basis between May and June 2021.

The goal was to drive traffic and increase revenue via its website and achieve a positive ROAS of at least x1.

The challenge

The team wanted to move to an ‘always-on’ influencer strategy to drive long-term brand affinity and show how Elemis’ products can fit into anyone’s daily skincare routine on a regular basis. This meant Elemis needed to have a more consistent and ongoing influencer strategy, instead of solely relying on product launches or campaigns for influencer engagement, as it had historically done.

Specific to the beauty industry, when scaling creator activity it’s important for brands to monitor scientific claims being made about its products. This includes ingredients and the results a consumer can expect, ensuring these are factually presented and aligned to the brand. Investing more in a marketing tactic naturally means a higher emphasis on ROI. Almost half of consumers also convert in-store after being able to test out an item they’ve seen an influencer using online.

The solution

Working with influencers wasn’t a new approach for Elemis, but the partnership with LTK led to a fresh way of working with content creators by embracing authentic, transparent messaging, while targeting creators who convert for the luxury fashion vertical.

LTK and Elemis enlisted top creators from recent campaigns, alongside leveraging historically successful influencers from previous Elemis campaigns and those linking organically. Elemis knew that building brand affinity needed a hands-off approach. The Elemis team saw that allowing creators to choose the products to feature on their channels would encourage them to freely craft their own original content. This gave creators a greater opportunity to create content that resonated with followers who trusted their personalised recommendations.

Using LTK's proprietary tech platform and over a decade of creator sales data, the LTK team selected creators that aligned to the brand’s objectives – driving engagement and conversion. LTK was able to cast creators with a genuine love for the Elemis brand and who brought a personal approach to the campaign. The in-house LTK Creator Success team ensured creators had the tools to achieve the desired results while helping to form trust and loyalty amongst their followers.

Elemis worked with six paid LTK creators for two months, and another group of nine influencers for one month. The creators were provided with personalised discount codes for Elemis products which they could distribute to their YouTube and Instagram followers.

Throughout the initial two-month period of the campaign, LTK facilitated additional ad-hoc gifting requests from the casted creators around seasonal days like Father’s Day, to receive additional organic mentions and sustain consistency of promotion. LTK also helped make adjustments to the campaign with phase-on -phase analysis, providing tailored gifting for top performing creators to ensure results were maximised.

The results

Elemis reached 29% growth in sales year-on-year and a return on ad spend of 140%. More than three quarters (76%) of shoppers who used the influencer’s codes were new customers.

The campaign saw a reach of 2.8 million people, with users who saw the campaign on Instagram having a 2% engagement rate, and on YouTube a 25% engagement rate with the creators’ content.

What they said

“Although Elemis always had a multi-layered approach to influencer marketing, our partnership with LTK helped us transform our creative content and embrace a more authentic creator narrative,” said Hannah Sheahan, Head of Social Content at Elemis.

“Since working together, we have seen an impressive jump in our social media engagement rates and a significant growth in our revenue and ROI. Having LTK’s expertise to drive awareness and conversion brings the brand’s vision to life through credible voices across various platforms.” Robin Ward, LTK Head of Sales for Europe said: “There has been a recent rise of brands taking notice of the essential benefits creator commerce can provide. Brands are seeing their performance metrics and conversion rates drastically improve with these types of ambassadorial campaigns. Consumers today value natural, authentic product content that only creators can provide for their built-in audiences.

“By allowing creator brand ambassadors to have creative freedom and sharing their favourite products as a part of their day-to-day content, brands can tap into a higher ratio of trust and loyalty.”

Elemis teamed up with LTK for a second two-month initiative between September and December 2021. This was to maximise sales during peak spending months. The impact from both initiatives led to an always-on way of working in 2022 between both Elemis and LTK. The partnership will continue next year and beyond.


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