Beauty brands are flocking to Roblox for Pride 2023.
As Pride Month kicked off on Thursday, Essence Cosmetics became the latest beauty brand to launch a Pride-themed game on Roblox. It follows Nyx Professional Makeup and Urban Decay, which announced their campaigns earlier this month.
Essence’s “Color Dare” game focuses on themes of identity and individuality. Users play the game by helping the “Lash Princess” character turn the world from gray to colorful by doing kind things for non-player characters in the game. On four “community days” throughout the month, players who complete the game in a given time limit will win a donation to two LGBTQIA+ charities.
The campaign is about “being where Gen Z and Gen Alpha are,” said Thorsten Muhl, head of digital marketing and experience at Essence parent company Cosnova. “They’re spending a lot of time in virtual rooms and virtual games, more than we might think.”
Nyx Professional Makeup, meanwhile, is incorporating Roblox into its “Game Out Loud” Pride campaign aimed at combating bullying of LGBTQIA+ gamers. It created a “House of NYX Professional Makeup” in iHeartland on Roblox that allows users to take an allyship pledge to receive an allyship badge for their virtual avatar. The campaign will also be promoted with Twitch streamers.
Urban Decay, meanwhile, launched 18 makeup looks in Roblox for Pride in partnership with Ulta Beauty. To celebrate the launch, it held a virtual “Eye-Con” party in the platform on May 13 that featured a runway show. It was attended by influencers Manny Gutierrez, Leilani Green and Emmy Combs.
Eva Erdmann, president of Urban Decay Global, said, “As we build new communities of beauty creators and fans, our goal is simple: provide a platform that lets you unapologetically express yourself and connect with like-minded makeup lovers — and Eye-Con does exactly that. We are excited to take our longstanding relationship with Ulta Beauty, our No. 1 retail partner since 2004, to the next level in the metaverse.”
Brands are tapping into gaming influencers to promote their campaigns. Essence will get the word out about its game through Twitch streamer Emiru, who will play the game on her channel.
“We’re trying to continue to build [community] within this very engaged community in the gaming world,” said Jill Krakowski, North America CMO of Cosnova.
Beauty and fashion brands have increasingly adopted Roblox campaigns in recent years to reach a younger audience.
“For us, it’s really important for a younger engaged community to first learn about Essence, and then start exploring the products that we have and diving deeper into our world. We’re bringing them in at the very top of the funnel, versus at the product level. And it’s really a great way to start to learn more about the brand,” said Krakowski.
With around 60 million daily active users, Roblox is also catching the eye of brands that want to get in on the metaverse on a platform that already has a massive fan base. Metaverse platforms like Decentraland and Sandbox, meanwhile, remain more experimental for brands.
Roblox was chosen because it is an “established” platform with a “huge user base,” said Muhl. “It is basically our way into the metaverse. It is a huge platform. And we’re not talking about Decentraland or Sandbox, where we might be the only ones there.”
According to Muhl, Roblox is a long-term marketing opportunity, not just a platform for a one-off campaign.
“It is basically a strategic goal; we want to establish Roblox as a long-term touchpoint for our Essence brand,” he said. “We have bigger plans to activate the whole community.”