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YouTube to host first shoppable beauty festival

By Don-Alvin Adegeest


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Image: YouTube Beauty Festival

YouTube is to host its first shoppable beauty festival on 16 June. In a bid to compete for the advertising dollars traditionally allocated to television and shopping channels, YouTube is aiming large for creators and brands to make it a go-to destination for livestreaming, entertainment, fashion and shopping.

The Beauty Festival will be hosted by YouTube’s head of fashion and beauty, Derek Blasberg, and will see it partner with 40 beauty brands for on-site activations in Los Angeles and livestreaming these. Brands including Lancôme, Fenty Beauty, Dr Barbara Strum will take part in addition to exclusive product drops expected from Amber Scholl’s 333 and Co. Jewelry, Brad Mondo’s XMONDO, Cay Skin by Winnie Harlow, Donni Davy’s Half Magic Beauty, Glossier, Tracee Ellis Ross’s Pattern Beauty and Olaplex. Celebrity model Hailey Bieber is set to debut her brand Rhode Beauty.

Focus on shoppable entertainment

YouTube recently launched new features to help creators who wish to enter the live shopping segment. Two new channels will be launched to cohost a live shopping stream, a move aimed at “uniting their communities,” in addition to introducing a sponsored content-oriented tool called live redirects. Here creators “can start a shopping live stream on their channel, then redirect their audience to a brand’s channel for fans to keep watching.”

YouTube has been keen to attract creatives to its channel to monetize their talent, knowledge and expertise. Robert Kyncl, YouTube’s Chief Business Officer, said |thousands of YouTube creators around the world are not only making a living on our platform, they’re also hiring teams and forming businesses. And while there’s healthy debate around when the creator economy first began, there’s no doubt in my mind that YouTube has played a key role in its birth and explosive growth.”

Viewers of the Beauty Festival will be able to shop tagged products from participating brands as well make direct purchases from participant livestreams.

While YouTube has longer lifespan in terms of video content, TikTok is the platform that is driving Gen Z engagement, with many brands (and their advertising budgets) looking to maximise the shortform video social media craze, where a viral post can reach millions of users. Last year's Beauty Fest, which was not shoppable, drew just 6 million views but sparked enough interest to make it an annual event.

As digital and linear television worlds are converging YouTube is showing advertisers how to maximise the best of TV and digital and make more meaningful connections with audiences. YouTube said it paid over 30 billion dollars to creators in the three years to 2020.

Beauty Festival
Derek Blasberg
Hailey Bieber