What We Can Learn from the Fenty Beauty Launch

Rihanna’s makeup line is finally here! Arguably the most anticipated cosmetic launch of the year, Fenty Beauty will be available globally in retailers, Sephora and Harvey Nichols starting on September 8. I will admit, this is the first time I’ve been this excited for a beauty launch EVER.

Leading up to launch day, fans are teased with just enough to keep us on the edge.

Whoever is mastermind behind this roll out, I have to take my hat off to from a marketing and branding perspective. Fenty Beauty has done a stellar job of giving the audience just enough to keep us engaged and wanting more while maintaining a level of intrigue. Fair to say makeup aficionados and Rihanna fans have been waiting for MONTHS on this launch and will be shelling out their hard earn cash for the items in the collection – NO. QUESTIONS. ASKED. Mind you this is BEFORE knowing what exactly was even to be included in the collection. I know because I was one of those people ūüėČ

As a beauty lover and a public relations professional, I couldn’t help but watch this rollout unfold with excitement and admiration.

Here is what we can learn and take from the Fenty Beauty launch from a marketing and branding perspective:

1) Find your tribe and love them hard!

Rihanna’s navy goes hard for her and she¬† rarely disappoints them. Because of that, they are extremely loyal and with good reason She has never released a bad album and takes her time to release other creative projects in beauty, fashion and film. Rihanna recognizes who her audience is and listens to them! For years, fans have admired and complimented her style. Rihanna recognized that and gave them just what they asked for!

2) Quality goes a long way!

One of the reasons why this launch has been generating such excitement is that people know what to expect – QUALITY! For months, no one knew what was being launched and to be honest, it didn’t matter. One thing we can count on from Rihanna is that anything she has a hand in is held to a high standard. Her clothing launch with PUMA (FENTYxPUMA) is about to show its third season. Although its a fairly new line, it is still accepted among the fashion big wigs as opposed to just being looked at as just another “celebrity line.” It has also earned a legitimate spot in New York Fasion Week and sells out every time there is a release. It doesn’t hurt that Rihanna ha impeccable style so we trust that she will always steer us in the right direction in terms of what we wear on our bodies and faces. Give the people quality and you have their trust. And trust = $$$

3) Fill a need

In all honesty, do we NEED another makeup line? I would argue, no. The issue is many (not all) mainstream cosmetic companies lack diversity – not only in the products they offer but in their advertising¬† campaigns as well. Rihanna herself has mentioned that she wanted to create something for her “brown girls” because they had been so underrepresented and often disregarded by the beauty industry. With that, Fenty Beauty made huge waves on social media with a campaign that celebrated models of different skin tones AND a product offering that offers 40 shades of foundation. In other words, be useful, solve a problem and there will always be space for you at the top!

4) Be authentic

What so draws so many people to Rihanna is her realness. Many people feel like they can relate to her – almost like the girlfriend you wished you had or could party with. This is huge! This by no means dicosunts the hard work, planning and strategy that went into this launch and the brand that is Rihanna, but there is something that is very organic about her and this launch. The things that she creates (music, fashion, beauty) are simply extensions of her and what she loves. She is just living in her fabulous Rihanna world and sharing her passions with us. Do what you love, share what you love and the rest will follow!

5) Have a strategy

Over the past few months, we saw the brand slowly roll out with carefully thought out tactics, teasing fans leading up to the launch. ¬†Two years ago, Rihanna revealed her plans to launch a beauty line and two years to the day, she releases the teasers for it. She’s planned, prepped and organized. She’s ready! Piece by piece, we’re given just enough to keep us engaged until launch day. Rihanna dropped subtle hints at red carpet events, tagging Fenty Beauty in photos where her skin is glowing and her lips covered in a velvety matte lipstick, the logo, the release, tagline, packaging, swatches, etc – all done methodically.

6)  Keep your eyes on the prize

Rihanna’s famous no effs given approach to being a celebrity is a huge part of her branding. Her “head down, eyes on the prize” mentality is especially noteworthy when we take into consideration the many assets of Rihanna’s career that she is at the top of her game where she is constantly breaking records (music, fashion, movies). All in all Rih is a shining example showing that the best way to excel in your field is to keep you head down, focus on your goals and not pay attention to the haters and naysayers around you.


What are your thoughts on the Fenty Beauty launch?





12 thoughts

  1. I am so behind. I did not hear about Rihanna’s makeup line until this morning. Sometimes I can be so out of the loop. It is cool that she focused a lot on bring in diversity to her line so that everybody could feel like they had representation. Have you bought any of the products from her line yet?

  2. I loved this post! Regardless of what your niche is, you broke down some very important tips that we can all use in launching or growing our projects. I too am excited about this line for all the reasons you mentioned.

  3. I’m happy for Rihanna and her new cosmetic line. She will meet a deficit on the diversity arena of the cosmetics world. Your points are excellent reminders of how to take a business idea to the next and best level

  4. I think it’s exciting!My friends and I were just talking about it yesterday. I loved reading your perspective on it from a PR professional standpoint though— gives an interesting twist to the post. Totally agree about Rihanna knowing her niche and target audience and using that in a smart way.

  5. Ooops I didn’t even know Rihanna launched a makeup line, I thought she always partnered with MAC!! I am hoping this makeup line will be great since it has Riri behind it

  6. I just bought from her line! Honestly agree with you on all points here! It’s so nice to see a line that actually cares about its customers.

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