What Are the Strategies for Building a Cult Beauty Brand in the UK?

March 11, 2024

In today’s digitally driven world, beauty brands are evolving far beyond skincare and makeup products. With the rise of social media and influencers, brands have gained a new platform to cultivate a unique and loyal following. Cult beauty brands are those that have managed to create a dedicated community of customers who are deeply engaged with their products and ethos. But how exactly does a brand transform into a cult favourite? This article will delve into the strategies used by successful cult beauty brands in the UK, including the use of content marketing, digital strategies, and brand partnerships.

1. Understanding the Market

Before building a cult brand, it’s important to understand the beauty market and industry trends. In the UK, the beauty industry is predicted to grow by 16.5% by 2023, according to Google data. This growth is fueled by the increase in online shopping and the use of social media for product discovery and reviews.

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Successful cult beauty brands have a deep understanding of their customers’ needs, desires, and values. They are aware of what is trending in the beauty industry, and use this information to their advantage. For example, clean beauty, sustainability, and inclusivity are current trends that many successful beauty brands have incorporated into their business.

In order to gain market insights, brands can utilise social listening tools, customer surveys, and market research. These tools provide valuable data on consumer trends, competitor strategies, and emerging opportunities in the market.

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2. Building a Strong Brand Identity

A strong brand identity is the backbone of any successful cult beauty brand. This encompasses not just the products, but also the brand’s ethos, story, and values. Consumers today are looking for brands that align with their own values and aspirations. Therefore, brands need to clearly communicate their identity to attract and retain their customers.

For example, the beauty brand THG has built a strong cult following by focusing on sustainability and clean beauty. Their products are vegan, cruelty-free, and packaged in recyclable materials. They also offer a refillable programme to reduce waste.

A strong brand identity also involves a distinctive visual identity. This includes the brand logo, packaging, website design, and social media aesthetics. A consistent and attractive visual identity helps to increase brand recognition and loyalty.

3. Leveraging Content Marketing

Content marketing is a powerful tool for building a cult beauty brand. It involves creating and sharing valuable content that attracts, engages, and converts customers. This can include blog posts, videos, social media posts, and emails.

Beauty brands can use content marketing to educate their customers about their products, share beauty tips and tutorials, and tell stories that resonate with their audience. For instance, many brands share customer testimonials and before-and-after photos to show the effectiveness of their products.

In addition, brands can collaborate with influencers and bloggers to create authentic and relatable content. Influencer marketing is particularly effective in the beauty industry, as consumers often turn to influencers for product recommendations and reviews.

4. Harnessing the Power of Digital and Social Media

In today’s digital age, social media is a major driving force behind the success of cult beauty brands. Platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, and YouTube provide a platform for brands to engage with their customers, showcase their products, and build a community.

Beauty brands can use social media to share product launches, promotions, and behind-the-scenes content. They can also engage with their followers by responding to comments, reposting user-generated content, and hosting live Q&A sessions.

Furthermore, brands can utilise social media advertising to reach a wider audience and drive sales. Social media ads can be targeted based on demographics, interests, and behaviour, making them a cost-effective way to reach potential customers.

5. Establishing Strategic Partnerships

Partnerships can be a strategic way for beauty brands to expand their reach and increase their credibility. This can involve collaborating with other brands, influencers, celebrities, or organisations.

For example, a beauty brand could partner with a fashion brand to create a limited-edition collection. This not only attracts attention but also allows the beauty brand to tap into the fashion brand’s customer base.

Influencer partnerships are also popular in the beauty industry. Brands often send free products to influencers in exchange for a review or feature on their social media channels. This not only increases product visibility but also builds trust with potential customers, as consumers often trust recommendations from influencers they follow.

In conclusion, there’s no one-size-fits-all strategy for building a cult beauty brand. It requires a deep understanding of the market, a strong brand identity, strategic content marketing, and effective use of digital and social media. However, with the right strategies and a clear vision, beauty brands have the potential to cultivate a loyal and passionate community.

6. Utilising Rakuten Advertising and Other Media Platforms

Rakuten Advertising and other similar media platforms play a crucial role in the success of cult beauty brands. These platforms offer a variety of tools and services that allow brands to effectively advertise their products, reach a wider audience, and increase their market share.

Rakuten Advertising, for instance, offers affiliate marketing services. This involves partnering with publishers who promote the brand’s products on their websites or social media accounts. When a consumer makes a purchase through a publisher’s link, the publisher earns a commission. This is a cost-effective marketing strategy, as the brand only pays when a sale is made.

Additionally, these platforms provide detailed analytics that allow brands to track the performance of their marketing campaigns. This data can be used to optimise campaigns, improve customer targeting, and increase return on investment.

Beyond Rakuten Advertising, brands can utilise other media platforms such as Facebook Ads, Google Ads, and Instagram Ads. These platforms offer highly targeted advertising options, allowing brands to reach consumers based on their demographics, interests, and online behaviour.

In order to maximise the benefits of these platforms, brands need to create engaging and eye-catching ads that resonate with their target audience. This can involve using high-quality images and videos, compelling ad copy, and enticing offers.

7. Boosting Organic Traffic Through Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)

Attracting organic traffic through search engines is another crucial strategy for building a cult beauty brand. Organic traffic refers to visitors who find a website naturally through search engine results, rather than through paid advertising.

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is the process of improving a website’s visibility in search engine results. This can involve using relevant keywords, creating high-quality content, and improving website speed and usability.

For beauty brands, SEO can be particularly effective. Consumers often use search engines to research beauty products and find reviews. Brands that appear at the top of search results are more likely to attract these potential customers.

Moreover, SEO offers long-term benefits. Unlike paid advertising, which stops bringing in traffic as soon as the campaign ends, the effects of SEO can last for years. Therefore, investing in SEO can result in a steady stream of traffic and potential customers.

To maximise the benefits of SEO, brands can work with SEO specialists or agencies. They have the expertise to optimise websites and create SEO-friendly content.


The journey to building a cult beauty brand in the UK involves understanding the dynamic beauty market, solidifying a strong brand identity, creating engaging content, and harnessing the power of digital marketing. Crucial strategies include utilising media platforms like Rakuten Advertising and boosting organic traffic through SEO. Collaborating with influencers and establishing strategic partnerships can also help amplify the brand’s reach, increase credibility and achieve a larger market share.

While the path to becoming a cult beauty brand is not without its challenges, the rewards are significant. Brands that successfully build a cult following can enjoy a loyal customer base, increased brand recognition, and significant growth in the personal care and beauty industry. With determination, creativity, and a clear vision, any beauty brand has the potential to rise as a cult favourite in the United Kingdom. By staying true to their values and consistently delivering high-quality beauty products, these brands can truly make a mark in the beauty industry.