The beauty retailers best using social media sentiment are…

Three retail brands are slaying the competition when it comes to using social media to drive their personal care and beauty sales.

Bath and Body Works, Ulta and Sephora have claimed the top three spots, when it comes to increasing brand performance through both face-to-face and social media conversations, according to the new “TotalSocial Ranking,” from Engagement Labs. The study analyzed customer sentiment for six months ending April 2018.

According to data, Bath & Body Works kept its crown as the top beauty and personal care brand. Sephora dropped slipped into third, down from second place six months ago. Ulta, which wasn't part of the ranking during the last analysis, was ranked the as the second top beauty and personal care brand.

Besides being the only retailers in the top 10 listing, these three companies unseated three of the previous top 10 brands – Old Spice, MAC Cosmetics and Nivea. Each one fell out of the listing entirely.

Social media usage is proving that consumers have the power to make or break a beauty brand’s reputation through their conversations. In fact, brand conversations drive 19% of U.S. consumer purchases, representing between $7 trillion and $10 trillion in annual sales, according to the study.

“Our analysis really drives home the need for beauty brands to understand the importance of having a comprehensive view of social influence that embraces conversations as a powerful asset, regardless of where they take place,” said Ed Keller, CEO of Engagement Labs.

“Each of the brands that lost their hold on the top 10 experienced a decline in offline scores, while those brands that activated offline conversations saw improvement,” he added. “There is no reliable correlation between conversations happening via social media and those that happen in real-life, and as a result, brands need to create integrated strategies to drive consumer buzz about their brand both online and off.”