Ebony Recruits Bloggers for New Beauty Awards Program

By Steve Smith

In a novel new editorial program to leverage the online community, Ebony magazine has recruited beauty bloggers to judge the best products for Black American women. In the new issue of Ebony, the first Beauty and Grooming Awards singles out over 50 items, from “oil-zapping cleansers” to “illuminating bronzers,” “brow enhancers” to “wrap lotions.” An initial slate of candidates were drawn by professionals in the field, but products then were sent out to some of the top bloggers in the beauty community. The results were unveiled this week at Ebony.com and in the new issue of the magazine.

The new program was a pure editorial program, Ebony CEO Desiree Rogers tells minonline. The company did not solicit any advertising from companies that won awards, but the brands were notified of the win and can use the Beauty and Grooming Awards stamp to market their products. Winners included Revlon Super Lustrous Lipgloss, Biore Steam Activated Cleanser and Miss Jesse’s Quick Curls.
The program aims to launch a new franchise for Ebony that the company can extend to print, digital, retail and mobile applications. The program wisely leverages the existing beauty blogger community both as real-world judges of product but also as buzz-generators to create grass roots marketing for the program. Some of the top blogger judges are featured with their product reviews at Ebony.com.

Ebony has partnered with longstanding sites like the five-year-old Afrobella.com and TheMakeupGirl.net in the effort.