Yves Saint Laurent shows ‘Y’ influencer marketing works


With beautiful photography at its heart, Instagram is the preferred social media tool for many young people seeking the latest luxury fashion and beauty inspiration.

According to a survey, 75 per cent of Instagram’s users said they had been inspired by a post to take actions such as visiting a website or buying something online.

It’s no surprise then that many high-end brands are utilising Instagram as a way of winning over fans and building brand love. And a huge part of that is influencer marketing. Instagram has been described as ‘the place to be’ when it comes to influencer marketing.

Joining forces with famous faces and social media stars with a large following that can use their creativity and personal style to endorse product has proven to be incredibly successful for many notable brands.

One of these is luxury beauty company, Yves Saint Laurent (YSL) who embarked on a clever, sophisticated online campaign for its male fragrance ‘Y’. Upping its ‘cool’ credentials, YSL worked with a carefully chosen group of male models – each with their own quirky and unique style – to appeal to modern, fashion-forward men.

As well as raising awareness and driving sales with millennial on-trend males the brand also sought to alter its perception to give it more of an edge.

For the Y campaign, each model created his own unique and desirable content for a series of Instagram posts as part of the paid-for partnership. While the stylish, urban men were the main focus of each post, the fragrance bottle was included in each one, to build an association between the models and the scent.

Bill Kaulitz

Waking up – That’s Y!!! @yslbeauty #THATSY #anzeige

A post shared by Bill Kaulitz (@billkaulitz) on

The captions had to stick to having a ‘Y’ theme such as “Cause there’s a Y in everything I do” from social media star Luca Macellari Palmieri to the slightly less philosophical “Waking up – That’s Y!!!” from German rock singer Bill Kaulitz.

The subtly of the content combined with its choice of online personalities, helped to make a luxury product feel accessible and real. The posts also felt genuine and fitted in well with the style and tone of each influencers Instagram account; adding to brand authenticity and trust.

Luca Macellari Palmieri

This approach has served the brand well with follower growth rocketing by nearly 70% in 2017, with close to 28,000 mentions in that year alone. During the time of this campaign, the spike in sponsored posts mirrored the total follower count.

This shows the power of strategic digital marketing and finding the right influencers to deliver the response you need. Find out more about what trust and relatability in influencer marketing can mean for your brand.

Another good example of a brand that’s delivered a unique social media experience is when the Burj Khalifa worked with influencers to create a mini-series of social media videos.

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