Every major style and beauty publication hosts an annual beauty awards. Usually, the awards are very brand- and industry-driven, with a page for each category. But Women’s Health has been evolving in recent years, and publisher and vice president Laura Frerer-Schmidt didn’t want to do the same old beauty awards.
Instead of the typical categories — hair, face, nails, etc. — Frerer-Schmidt and editor-in-chief Michele Promaulayko decided to make the 2014 Women’s Health Beauty Awards more about the way the WH reader lives and her most important “social moments.” The categories include: work, at the gym, on vacation, after hours, and every day.
“It’s not really about how we see things,” Frerer-Schmidt says. “It’s about the way that [the reader] sees things.”
Indeed, this is an approach that has been instrumental in the growth of the magazine, specifically on social media. Its Facebook following has grown from 458,000 to 3.7 million in the last three years, or 708 percent year-over-year. Its Twitter following has grown 35 percent and Instagram has doubled during the same period. Engagement is high, says Frerer-Schmidt.
“You don’t want someone to join Facebook and not interact with you,” she says. “In our social [media], we have almost a million interactions a day. These things aren’t sitting dormant, people are interacting with us. They’re coming back to Facebook; they’re coming back to Twitter.”
Frerer-Schmidt attributes the WH social media success to a number of reasons, the biggest of which is how the magazine connects with the consumers at the level of lifestyle. So it makes sense that the magazine would develop its beauty awards around the same idea.
“It’s a fun and realistic way to look at beauty,” she says.
In keeping with growth of the WH social following, the magazine incorporated several social components to the awards. In addition to the social moments being featured in the June issue of Women’s Health, which is just hitting stands, the winning looks are featured on Preen.me, an online community for beauty enthusiasts.
It doesn’t stop there; the team also launched a contest for the Top Beauty Instagramer. WH beauty director Molly Nover-Baker and Matthew VanLeeuwen, makeup artist for Naomi Watts and Salma Hayek, will pick the Instagrammer with the best beauty tips. The winner will become a Women’s Health summer beauty blogger, be featured in a future issue of of the magazine and win a three-night spa trip to the Gansevoort Turks + Caicos.
The contest is currently open and closes on June 24, 2014. In the meantime, you can catch WH beauty editor Jill Percia showcasing some of the 2014 Women’s Health Beauty Award Winners on Fox & Friends this weekend.