How the Lush social media approach loves local

Despite its international store footprint, the Lush social media approach is 'local first'. Lush Cosmetics has long taken an energetic approach to social media. Its early success on social media enabled the brand to grow an organic and engaged community which shared enthusiasm for its product and the sustainable and ethical way Lush did business. As well as operating social media accounts, the business was one of the first to recognise social media as a tool to communicate locally and empower each of its stores to run social media with a degree of autonomy.

Here we show you how loving local has helped Lush thrive on social media.

Rethinking social media

Lush made the decision in 2019 to rethink its social media. By using analytics and insight, the business found that its social media content was not finding the reach it desired, as platforms increasingly required a pay for play approach. Instead Lush opted to focus on its owned digital platforms including its website and app, but allowed individual stores to continue to operate local social media accounts with support from a central brand and comms function.

What does the insight show us?

Maybe* has profiled a random selection of Lush's local social media accounts, as well as its central social media account, to see what engagement they generates for the business.

While not all stores execute social media as strongly, and there is disparity between which platforms are used and for what purpose, the result has been the best of both worlds.  Stores are empowered to communicate at a local level highlighting reasons to visit, showcasing the tactile nature of the stores through a style of social content that evokes the senses and inspires visits.

In addition, Lush’s local social media presence champions its employees and their personalities which can only serve to increase employee engagement and accountability for their stores' successes and customer satisfaction.

The audience size, social media activity and engagement across Lush social media accounts 9th May - 16th May 2021

NameFollowersTotal postsTotal EngagementsAverage posts per dayAverage engagements per postAverage engagements per day
Lush LtD1,274,19600000
LUSH Oxford Street164,149276,9531258993
Lush Liverpool30,441306,2101207887
Lush Cribbs Causeway9,9802546111866
Lush Lakeside5,675921412431
Lush Manchester Arndale11,564327509139

Lush maintains its central social media accounts but rarely posts. The decision it made in 2019 has been upheld for two years, throughout COVID and all lockdowns.

As the business only undertakes organic social media and does not support its activity with paid advertising, engagements per day are in the hundreds across its local accounts.

Its local accounts in Oxford Street and Liverpool see a much higher engagement rate overall per post and per day showing that its local content in these locations works harder for the business.

Cribbs Causeway, Manchester Arndale and Lakeside see a much smaller audience than Oxford Street and Liverpool and lower engagement rates. In the case of Manchester and Lakeside where the volume of activity posted through the week is much lower than the other stores, increasing activity would see them achieve engagements in the hundreds.

What are the best local Lush social media posts?

Best posts by the local stores include new product ranges from Father's Day to subscription deals and gift boxes. In Liverpool, best post content comes from Lush’s ongoing commitment to Vegan and sustainably sourced ingredients. None of the best posts feature competition hacks to grow engagement.

The numbers of engagements without paid support plus the nature of the content demonstrates that Lush’s local customers are engaged with the brand, its product and its purpose at a deeper level than running competitions would create.

Key takeaways

Taking a localised approach with central support and guidance for consistency has allowed Lush to maintain a consistent brand identity and communicate shared commercial and business culture priorities. At the same time the approach creates space to follow through on the bespoke and personal approach it takes to its customer service and physical store experiences with community-focused social media that demonstrates shared passions with its customers.

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