Benefit Cosmetics Sails Away with Influencer Marketing

Benefit Cosmetics, headquartered in San Francisco, California, selling at over 2,000 counters in more than 30 countries, has identified and prioritized Influence Marketing as a key component of their marketing toolset. Influence Marketing has been highly effective in the cosmetic industry as it focuses on influential individuals rather than the target market as a whole, industry insiders and brand advocates carry significant “clout” in the cosmetic industry. These influencers, in combination with the reach/impact of social media, are capable of helping create brand awareness and preference by virtue of their “enviable and well-earned” position within the highly competitive cosmetic industry. 

At regular intervals, Benefit Cosmetics creates and sends Influencer Promotions or “Sends,” as they are called within the industry. The more impressive the Send, the more effective, in terms of social media response rates and brand loyalty positioning. 

What would you bring if you were stranded on a desert island?

Primary Color was called upon to help design and implement an Influencer Marketing Campaign called “Stranded on Benefit Island.”  The engaging concept asks the Influencer to consider “What Benefit product would be most desirable to them, as an Influencer, if they were stranded on an island”. Primary was asked to provide initial ideas for something unique, compelling, and capable of engaging the highly-sought-after attention of key industry insider “influencers”. 


Benefit Island Campaign

Although a number of ideas were presented, ultimately what was created was a treasure chest of valuable desert island cosmetic products. The “Stranded on a Desert Island” send consists of a keepsake treasure chest containing five successful Desert Island lines of product.  In addition, another five products, specific to the influencer’s personal product preferences, was sent along with the Desert Island line. The treasure chest was wrapped in a weathered, cloth map of an imaginary island that unfolds to reveal the treasure chest. The out-of-box experience is orchestrated to enhance the excitement of the experience. 


The central component of the campaign is something out of South Pacific folklore, a real, to-scale, raft with a pink benefit sail, constructed out of bamboo and sheer sail cloth. On each raft is an oversize replica of one of the five Desert Island products, that features one of the Influencers on the packaging. The personalized rafts were sent directly to the appropriate Influencer that corresponded with the product in which they appear.

Understanding the audience and fine-tuning the send to the recipient’s personal preference, is what sets Benefit Cosmetics apart from the competition and is what keeps the influencer engaged and interacting with the Benefit brand. Now that’s a way to produce big buzz around a line of products!

How can Primary help you create a buzz?


An additional successful send was the Benefit Survival Kit.

Keep a look out for more upcoming projects!