How Luxury Brands Innovate on Social Media
Alice White Walker / 24 March 2015
Once upon a time, heritage brands didn’t know how to tackle social media. They were precocious, demanded a lot of attention and (shock-horror) they were mass-market! So how do the world’s most prestigious brands maintain their covetable status online? We look at four international names to discover how they innovate using social media…
How Louis Vuitton use Facebook to Increase Hype
At nearly 20 million Facebook fans, the level of social media activity merits this high number.
The brand uses the network as a hub for all their social content—integrating their Instagram feed, YouTube channel, and Pinterest application, as well.
Important calendar fixtures like Fashion Week are vital for maximising brand awareness—both before and after the event.
From backstage model fittings, to product-by-product stills and video highlights; the brand use a range of media to captivate the audience, offering them the chance to see inside of a Louis Vuitton show.
For the Fall 2015 Fashion Week in Paris, it boosted hype by inviting Artistic Direction of Women’s Collections Nicolas Ghesquière, to take-over the official Instagram account for the period. What better way to see inside one of the world’s most prominent fashion events?
Louis Vuitton take advantage of its position as a world-famous name, by continually enticing the community with its activity.
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How Burberry uses Brand Identity to Drive Sales
One of luxury’s pioneers of social media, Burberry is a blueprint of how to excel on digital.
Continuing to thrive, in 2014, a reported 60% of Burberry’s marketing budget went towards honing its presence online.
Leveraging the notoriety that comes with its most iconic product—the trench coat—, in 2009 Burberry set up a mini site called Art of the Trench to accompany their online shop.
The collection street-style images, shot by some of fashion’s most well-established photographers, are the perfect inspiration for the custom trench that’s waiting for you online. Moreover, you can add your own trench-perfect photo, ideal for increasing community engagement.
Burberry utilise the fact that social is predominantly used by the younger generation—keeping a strong connection to today’s average user.
Burberry crowdsources in many different ways on social media. By choosing the most relevant celebrities as ambassadors, it creates a huge amount of appeal for the brand. A stellar example was pairing Cara Delevingne and Kate Moss together for the new My Burberry fragrance. The model of the moment plus the model of all time = double the fan engagement.
Burberry also collaborates with young British musicians to develop their brand identity. Creative Director Christopher Bailey set up the Acoustic Project—short films of musicians playing in charming English locations, decked head to toe in Burberry of course…
It also promotes this interest via Twitter. Using the hashtag #MusicMonday, the account tags George Ezra—a former Burberry mentee who performed live at their S/S 14 Menswear show—in his Radio One Live Lounge cover. This way, it targets a large audience with an interest in music, who might be potential Burberry lovers too. By featuring home-grown talent, the brand is constantly fresh and ahead of the curve.
Despite a high retail price—the starting price of a trench is £1,095—, by keeping in contact with younger generation, Burberry are present in the minds of fashion lovers from a young age. Consumers who will aspire to own that trench coat…
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How Cartier uses Video Marketing to Enhance their eReputation
Founded in 1847, Cartier has besparkled royalty and celebrities alike ever since. From its famous wristwatches, to the panther motif, Cartier is synonymous with wealth and good taste.
Like Chanel, Cartier use video marketing to modernise the brand.
With access to a heftier budget than most, Cartier pull out all the stops for lavish and distinctive montages. The Odyssey, is a scenic journey, featuring iconic world sites and their equally legendary jewellery.
Emphasising a magical, ethereal quality gives the brand a mysterious edge and ultimately, hightens its appeals amongst jewellery lovers.
The most recent—The Proposal—, unveiled for Valentine’s Day 2015, is a Love Actually-style story of three couples at different stages in their relationships. Seasonal romanticism, entertaining plotline, and naturally, some credit card-crunching rings.
Lasting over 6 minutes, The Proposal is more short film than TV advertising, which significantly enhances its prestige. Cartier also diffused the film across its social networks. Clips of the video were used to create a buzz on Instagram three days prior to the launch of the full film. On Facebook, it boosted video views by following up with product stills.
Une vidéo publiée par Cartier Official (@cartier) le
While the brand might appear to chiefly target female buyers, Cartier strives to appeal to their male audience through video too. Fine craftsmanship, prestige and advanced technology are three qualities that don’t go amiss amongst that segment of its audience.
And while Cartier understand that women would aspire to be given Cartier jewellery, it doesn’t forget about the men who might be buying it either…
How Oscar de la Renta Use a Personality to Engage Audiences
While many designer brands might have celebrity ambassadors, often the voice is kept united and slightly reserved.
Largely this is in order to maintain a hierarchical separation from the consumer. High-end isn’t high-end if you don’t have to reach for it!
Chanel, for example, is does this really well. While it uses celebrities to animate their communities, the brand doesn’t actively engage with them (e.g. they don’t follow anyone on Twitter).
Contrary to this tactic, American fashion house Oscar de la Renta uses social media to offer an insider’s look into the brand.
However, instead of having a team member pose as the designer himself, the brand’s Communications Director, Erika Bearman—aka OscarPRGirl, actively fronts its social media accounts. Beginning the now famous blog in 2008, and joining Twitter in 2009, OscarPRGirl began as a way of showing fans the brand through her eyes (beauty brand NARS use a similar tactic with the NARSissist).
Read Next: How Beauty Brands Use Social Media
Speaking to Mashable, Oscar de la Renta’s CEO Alex Bolen said that using a personality on social networks helped the brand’s “authenticity” on social.
OscarPRGirl commands a strong Instagram presence, with nearly half a million followers. Featuring vintage fashion photographs, inspiring quotes from Oscar himself, and beautiful fashion sketches, OscarPRGirl really immerses fans in the brand.
A great example is the 7-day video countdown on the network to engage fans prior to the Fashion Week show in February. A simple montage that worked wonders at increasing brand awareness.
No longer an extension of traditional marketing, social media has opened up the field for brands to promote, communicate and innovate to their communities. Rather than viewing the process as a means to an end, luxury brands have really embraced social networks, making it a fundamental part of the dialogue.
From Instagram to Snapchat, luxe brands continue to think of imaginative ways to entertain fans around the world, one high heel at a time…
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