Offering a unique industry emphasis on education, Condé Nast College are often teaming up with beauty and fashion industry leaders to give our students a dose of what it’s like to work on industry set briefs. Here, two second year BA (Hons) Fashion Communication students, Alice Morey and Holly Dunmore talk us through their experience collaborating with MAC Cosmetics for their Collaborative Industry Project.
MAC Cosmetics set the CNC Students a Project
A highlight of second year for our second year BA (Hons) Fashion Communication students is their Collaborative Industry Project. Working on live briefs set by brands. This year our students had the choice of choosing between Coach and MAC Cosmetics. Holly Dunmore and Alice Morey, explain first-hand their experience of working on a live brief and collaborating with MAC.
Holly Dunmore, BA (Hons) Fashion Communication
We’ve all owned something from MAC, right? Whether it’s one of their cult lipsticks or an eyeshadow palette, MAC has clearly put its stamp on the beauty industry. So, when I heard that working with MAC for our Collaborative Industry Project was an option, I was so intrigued to find out more.
Lesley Crowther, Vice President of Consumer Engagement and Retail at Estée Lauder and Lauren Raff, Consumer Marketing Manager at MAC posed the question…
“In an era of increasing makeup competition, how would you drive MAC to engage a young millennial audience?”
With such an open brief, the project was left to our own interpretation and we had the creative freedom to push the boundaries of marketing and innovation; our outcomes really could be anything we wanted. Combining both creative and strategic aspects, we proposed a strategy document outlining our response to the brief and used visuals to really bring our ideas to life.
Utilising new technology to gamify beauty consumption
My campaign was called ‘MAC:UNDERCOVER, Unleash Your Curiosity’, where I explored the combination of physical and digital within retail, proposing a gamified experience in Soho. This was aided by a specialised app to lead the MAC consumer to a secret, experiential location. I was able to really immerse myself in the latest technologies and campaigns that were cutting through the current noise of the beauty industry and pitch a campaign that would help MAC stand out from the crowd.
From the initial briefing, undertaking market research and brand visits to proposing my final creative outcomes, the 10 week project flew by, but I felt like I achieved so much. The strong industry tie really gave me a taster of what kind of task I could be set in the future within the workplace and gave me a good insight into the workings of the beauty industry. Oh, and to present my project to MAC’s Global Senior Make-up Artist and judge from the BBC’s ‘Glow-up’, Dominic Skinner, was a bonus!
- Can men really wear makeup?
- Designer Brand Coach set our BA Fashion Communication Students a Challenge
Alice Morey, BA (Hons) Fashion Communication
The opportunity to work with either Coach or MAC was a daunting yet a thrilling prospect. Both established in their own respective fashion and beauty markets we were given a unique opportunity to work from an external perspective, while gaining an internal insight into the brands and how we could create campaigns which would appeal to a new younger millennial consumer.
Learning more about the Beauty Industry
Deciding upon MAC was an exciting move, having initially never working in a beauty sphere I was not only gaining first-hand experience of the beauty industry but learning the differences and strategic decisions taken in a beauty business contrasted to a fashion brand.
The first step receiving an industry briefing was unlike the usual module briefing having to not solely focus on the learning outcome of the module, but also taking into consideration the needs and requirements of the brand and what they expect to be delivered. Having the chance to speak directly to the brand at this stage and ask questions, which otherwise you would not have had the opportunity to ask, added a deeper layer to project and further validation to the strength of our campaign ideas.
View this post on Instagram
Yesterday the BA students visited the MAC flagship store for their mid-point collaborative brand visit. As well as hearing all about the world of MAC and the company’s DNA, the students were lucky enough to meet Dominic Skinner, MAC’s Global Senior Artist and judge on @glowupbbc . We loved watching your superb make-up tutorial @dominic_mua – and a big thank you to the marketing team @maccosmeticsuk for hosting such a brilliant day. 🌈
Visiting the MAC Flagship in London
The mid-point brand visit was a high point for the module. Visiting one of the MAC flagships stores on Carnaby store, receiving a guided tour by the MAC Pro Artists, before receiving a series of mini talks on different aspects of the MAC business helped to solidify ideas. Furthermore, it provided the opportunity to take the theoretical knowledge gained from the lecture series and apply them to a real-life branded situation. Strengthening the learning taking place in college and for the first-time experience how to take work from an education setting, elevate it, and apply to a work setting.
Learning to pitch professionally
The final stage of the module was presenting back to the brand at the end of the module. Although pitching and presenting our final outcomes is an active part of the course, this was our first professional pitching opportunity. Although initially nerve wrecking, this chance to present our ideas in such a way showcased all of our hard work over the 10-week period and gain first-hand feedback from the brand on the feasibility of the application of our campaigns into MAC. Overall, I thoroughly enjoyed this module and found it a transitional point in the degree process from learning exclusively for college purposes to starting to think long term post-CNC and working out in industry.
By Alice Morey & Holly Dunmore
Learn more about the business side of the beauty industry
Find out more about our fast-track two year degree in Fashion Communication
Dip your toe in the Condé Nast water with a one-week short course