Mac's Tumblr gives makeup lovers a backstage look at fashion week

Mac Cosmetics is backstage applying models’ makeup at 800 fashion shows a year, attending 200 fashion weeks all over the world in one season. To take followers behind-the-scenes at these events, the company turns to its Tumblr account.

“It’s the hub where all of our fashion week imagery is housed — there’s a lot of content,” said Laura Elkins, svp of global marketing at Mac. While most fashion week coverage revolved around the clothing, she said, Mac’s fans come to its Tumblr for the latest in makeup trends and inspiration.

In February, Mac launched a digital ad campaign around its Tumblr content. The ads, graphics designed by illustrator Hattie Stewart and customized by city, clicked through to Mac’s Tumblr account. Mac is adding behind-the-scenes photos from each fashion show as they happen. Followers can search for different shows and filter by collections and makeup artist. Mac have seen traffic to its Tumblr increase 700 percent during the campaign, which ends March 11.

The campaign included paid social ads and native posts on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter that directed people to Mac’s Tumblr. Mac also used its company bio on Instagram, where Mac has 8.6 million followers, to promote the link to its Tumblr account.

The Paris Fashion Week ad designed by Hattie Stewart.
The Paris Fashion Week ad designed by Hattie Stewart.

Mac also used Stewart’s designs to draw attention to Tumblr on the other platforms.

“They begged to be shared across all social platforms,” Elkins said. “It made our content stand out during what is a very cluttered time across all forms of media.”

Mac also shared footage and photos from backstage during the month of February, when fashion shows take place around the world, on Snapchat, YouTube and Periscope, but uses the Tumblr account as an ongoing portfolio for artists’ work and collections.

A recent post on Mac's Tumblr.
A recent post on Mac’s Tumblr.

Valentine Uhovsky, Tumblr’s fashion evangelist, said that the platform’s permanence is what makes it a prime sharing space for a heavyweight event like Paris Fashion Week.

“The content on Tumblr can live on other platforms, like Instagram, which is a great visual platform,” said Uhovsky. “But Tumblr is where the content can last, through archives, filters and search. It doesn’t get pushed down in a feed and forgotten in 24 hours.” 

As comprehensive as Mac’s Tumblr account is, it’s missing one key capability: a feature that lets you shop the products used in the makeup looks. Fashion Week itself is in transition as consumers expect to be able to buy what they’re seeing on the runway.