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The Story Behind CeraVe’s Success

The skin-care brand’s earned media value is up 128 percent year-over-year, according to Tribe Dynamics.

PARIS — CeraVe, the 15-year-old American skin-care brand, is having a serious social-media moment.

“Their [earned media value] is up 128 percent year-over-year, to $22 million-worth of coverage,” said Conor Begley, cofounder and president of Tribe Dynamics, an influencer data and analytics company. “They have over 2.3 thousand influencers talking about them this year, also up 134 percent. That’s over 9,000 pieces of content that were created just in 2020, which is up about 183 percent.”

Begley noted the increases are mostly fueled by new faces.

“The amount of EMV driven per influencer and the number of posts per influencer is roughly flat year-over-year,” he said. “It’s just the number of influencers that’s growing dramatically. A lot more people were talking about the brand this year than there were last year.”

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Yet this isn’t a one-year phenomenon. Begley highlighted the consistent growth in CeraVe’s rank over the past three years. According to Tribe Dynamics’ data for skin care, CeraVe took 75th spot in 2018, the 59th slot in 2019 and in October of this year was 22nd.


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In the process, CeraVe has been speeding past some major beauty players.

Begley attributes CeraVe’s rise to numerous factors, including — in 2020 — Gen Z skin-care influencer Hyram Yarbro on TikTok (with almost 7 million followers) and YouTube.

“He powered about 14 percent of the brand’s total coverage, which is a lot for a single person to drive,” Begley said. “And that’s across 58 different pieces of coverage. Compare that to last year: He only did about 10 pieces of coverage, and it was only about $100,000 worth of EMV, so about 3 percent of the total.”

On TikTok, CeraVe’s hashtag boasts more than 303 million views.

“Which is interesting because CeraVe doesn’t really have an owned account. They have their own TikTok account, but it has only 13,000 followers, so [growth] really is being driven by these influencers,” Begley said.

The bulk of CeraVe’s content on TikTok is before-and-after usage transformations, whereas on Instagram and YouTube, it’s primarily related to skin-care routines.


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“They’re talking about how their routines change over time, with that being their number-two hashtag after skin care. That’s also more than doubling year-over-year,” Begley said.

Of top-ranked skin-care brands in terms of social media buzz, CeraVe is the number-one mass-market label and about the 20th overall in a field made mostly of prestige players.

Alison Bringé, chief marketing officer of data research and insights company Launchmetrics, attributed CeraVe’s remarkable rise on social media to its having “the right message for the right audience at the right time,” she said.

Pre-coronavirus pandemic, there’d already been a noted trend of young consumers focused on value-based purchases.

“They want to have this kind of story behind a brand,” Bringé said. “[CeraVe] is dermatologist-recommended — it really speaks to that trend. For skin care, it’s quite important to this generation to feel like it has that stamp of approval from someone who really has an authority.”

A second phenomenon during the pandemic, as everyone hung out and worked virtually, has been the shifting focus to purchasing skin care.

While a third driver is that Gen Z and Millennial consumers are now primarily discovering beauty products through word-of-mouth marketing — which where a “skinfluencer” like Hyram comes in.

“These three [elements] have made this recipe for success,” Bringé said.

According to Launchmetrics, in the March to October 2020 period, CeraVe generated $39 million of media impact value, of which 32 percent came from influencer voice. Hyram was CeraVe’s top voice, even before the brand’s own media, with his posts valued at $3.2 million in MIV.

See Also:

How CeraVe Conquered the Internet

Skin-care Content Creator Hyram Yarbro Signs With UTA

L’Oréal Finalizes Purchase of the CeraVe, AcneFree and Ambi Brands

WATCH: The Story Behind the Success of CeraVe