When Mehmet Oz (aka Dr. Oz) and Michael Roizen launched YouBeauty.com in July, they had a mission: Explore the link between health and beauty in a fun and factual way. While the doctor duo brought a wealth of knowledge, they didn’t know how to inform people.
Facebook stood out as the most effective platform for YouBeauty to capitalize on Dr. Oz’s TV fans. “The science of leveraging a Facebook audience and getting their attention is just not something that we knew anything about,” recalls Steve Lindseth, CEO of YouBeauty. “We were trying to build up a respective audience for the site pre-launch so that when we did launch, we had a community of people anticipating the launch from which we could then build our initial audience.”
The then-aspiring site enlisted Extole, a provider of social engagement applications aimed to drive measurable results for brands and agencies. The vendor capitalizes on word-of-mouth referrals by using giveaways on Web sites and social media. Lindseth says he chose Extole because it was “maniacally focused on Facebook.”
He adds, “The problem with the marketing business, especially the digital marketing business, is it’s a big chemistry experiment, and you have to try stuff and see what works. [Extole] just has a ton of experience trying all of these things, and they just have a great wisdom in terms of what strategies work, how to configure things, and a tremendous platform that allows you to do all of this.”
Extole’s multichannel engagement platform is designed to help marketers build a strong customer base, engage fans, and convert social engagement into recommendations and sales. “We work with our customers and brands to turn their customers into social marketers driving measurable results and ROI,” says Greg Brown, chief revenue officer for Extole. “For our customers, that ROI is usually in the form of likes, engagement, sales, and/or a combination thereof.”
With Extole’s help and guidance, YouBeauty launched a sweepstakes offering: a free three-day trip to New York to attend The Dr. Oz Show. To enter, consumers were required to like the YouBeauty brand on Facebook, in addition to completing an entry form online. “We were obviously starting a reasonably compelling offer,” Lindseth says.
Extole’s Facebook sweepstakes program is based on a “you win, I win” structure. Participants are given incentives to share contest information among their network of Facebook friends. If consumers successfully encourage friends to enter and those friends win, they also receive a present. For YouBeauty.com, the consumer who referred the winner received a $300 L’Oreal gift bag.
“Our expectations were to build somewhere north of 10,000 likes, and we hoped some reasonable number of those would actually register and opt in,” Lindseth adds. And that they did. YouBeauty received over 15,000 fans. “[We saw results] instantly.”
Brown adds, “A big part of what social engagement and social marketing are all about is building awareness in the marketplace and building a brand. It is about amplifying the message and driving those folks back to the brand to potentially purchase a compelling offer. Once you get those likes, it’s about what are you doing to convert those fans to meaningful ROI?”
In addition, YouBeauty’s email opt-ins reached 10,000, again surpassing expectations. “Email opt-ins are very much in vogue right now in terms of being able to leverage social channels,” Brown says.
“We’re trying to get women to participate in a new kind of conversation, and so Facebook is important to us because people converse on Facebook more than any place,” Lindseth says. “It’s also really important for us to continue to build our Facebook audience, and it’s also important to weave into our site motivation for people based on what they learn to participate in conversations both on Facebook and on our site.”
Lindseth advises other companies launching social media campaigns “to get help from an expert.” He says, “Instead of trying to figure it out, my view is to hire somebody who knows how to do it. Once we understood the level and experience that [Extole] had, we realized we had to get help.”
He adds that YouBeauty will “most definitely” continue its Extole partnership. “We were successful with what we set out to do, and we are very pleased.”