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Sephora uncaps color-correcting product sales via interactive mobile quiz

Sephora is leveraging sponsored content on Facebook to promote its Color Correcting Crash Course, which lets consumers discover their best-suited colors for combating undereye circles before inviting them to shop these items on the retailer’s mobile site.

Facebook users may spot one of Sephora’s ads interspersed with friends’ content in their newsfeeds, asking them to click the accompanying link to find out where they rank on the scale of color-correcting product expertise. The interactive quiz, each section of which takes under a minute to complete, includes a YouTube tutorial and call-to-action to purchase color-correcting beauty items once consumers finish.

“Engaging customers in interactive quizzes, games or contests is a great way to create a stronger bond with the brand,” said Ken Morris, principal at Boston Retail Partners. “Linking Sephora’s color correction quiz to YouTube tutorials is a smart way to educate consumers and strengthen the brand’s relationship with the consumer while increasing sales.

“As consumers get excited about color-correcting products, it helps foster brand enthusiasm, creates an ego boost that increases self-esteem and may inspire them to shop and ‘buy now’ on the mobile site.”

Promoting direct interaction
Consumers may click the link in the Facebook ad or visit to play the interactive game on their smartphones. The quiz’s homepage displays a text conversation between two individuals, one of whom laments that her under-eye circles are so dark today.

The other person informs her friend that she used pink makeup underneath her concealer, and that it cancelled out the blue tint surrounding her eyes.

Consumers will find a “try it now” button at the bottom of the screen, which will bring them to the quiz. Users will be able to choose one of eight characters – of varying skin tones – and select a problem to correct with cosmetics.

Solvable issues include cancelling out blue undertones underneath under-eye circles, brightening sallow complexions, counteracting acne redness and combating discoloration such as hyperpigmentation.

Quiz-takers will then be asked to choose one of eight color swatches representing the shade that will correct the problem. Each individual will have three chances to guess the corresponding color and receive a status such as “Color Master” or “Color Novice.”

Afterwards, consumers will be brought to another page featuring a YouTube tutorial instructing viewers exactly how to use color-correcting products to fix the issue at hand. Users may watch the video immediately, or enter their email addresses in the box below to have the how-to clip sent to them.

The last page of the quiz encourages beauty fans to correct another concern, or hit the “shop now” button, which will bring them to a portion of Sephora’s mobile site dedicated to color-correcting cosmetics.

Customers can browse the products by skin tone to ensure they purchase the accurate shade. For instance, pink-tinted products are best for light skin tones, while orange is well-suited for dark skin tones.

Individuals can add desired products into their virtual shopping carts and check out directly on Sephora’s site.

The seamless process ensures that quiz-takers do not have to do any extraneous work to visit the shoppable page or watch the corresponding YouTube tutorial.

Pandering to beauty fans
Sephora is likely to experience a surge in product awareness and sales for color-correcting cosmetics following the rollout of the mobile-optimized crash course.

The retailer is leveraging mobile to effectively cater to its primary target customers and their interests, which include using the latest tools and tricks to cover blemishes, hide under-eye circles and highlight certain facial features.

Individuals who take the course on their smartphones may become inspired to browse Sephora’s collection of color-correcting products before making an impromptu purchase. Other beauty fans will undoubtedly appreciate Sephora’s commitment to educating consumers on useful tips to enhance their cosmetics routines.

Sephora has previously introduced mobile-first features that disperse knowledge while showcasing its products in an enviable manner.

Last spring, the brand launched a new service on its mobile site and app, Pocket Contour Class, to provide tailored, step-by-step instructions for this big trend in makeup application (see story).

In a reflection of augmented reality’s growing role in beauty, Sephora is also bringing the technology to a wide audience via a new app feature that enables users to virtually try on different lip shades (see story).

“Consumers have short attention spans and retailers that can keep customers engaged will have more opportunities to convert engagement into sales,” Mr. Morris said. “Gamification is the act of applying gaming techniques in a non-gaming context to improve the user engagement/experience.

“According to a recent BRP survey, 87 percent of retailers plan to use gamification to engage the customer within five years.”