Digital Flux

As the digital world continues to grow, flourish and constantly innovate, brands must evolve in the way they communicate and engage with their audiences. The world of Luxury has embraced the digital space, and luxury brand behaviour is something other sectors must learn from.

The last decade has witnessed a remarkable transition across luxury brands. Luxury has long been invested in heritage and provenance traditionally displayed in the glossy pages of Vogue and sleek window displays on Bond Street, but it has now transitioned into world class techonological innovations from online TV channels, digital products and social media.

Dior, Chanel and Burberry are examples of brands that have successfully enabled consumer interaction through digital marketing. Last year Dior used a multifaceted digital campaign to launch the Dior Addict Fluid Stick. With a dedicated YouTube landing page, a backstage makeup microsite and social media accounts to promote the new cosmetic product, Dior was able to target, engage and interact with consumers on a global scale.

Chanel seduced the world through a series of iconic short films, with the most recent #theonethatiwant, they demonstrated the importance of creative and original content through video storytelling, reaching well over 11,000,000 views on YouTube.The step change in perception of Burberry has been well documented, but for a brand who were established almost 160 years ago, their digital marketing strategy is far from old fashioned.

Burberry have spearheaded the luxury tech revolution producing engaging and exciting digital content, allowing them to dominate the online presence as well as the continuation into their stores. From their interactive stores, digital campaigns such as Burberry Bespoke and Art Of The Trench, as well as their giant social presence (17 million followers on Facebook and almost 4.5 million followers on Twitter), the brand is one of the most successful luxurious brands in the digital space.

This is not just about digital communications – luxury brands are designing products and utilising innovative technology across their products. Louis Vuitton have integrated a 15cm x 13cm x 12cm aluminium computer into their pockets, available to order for next day delivery from any corner of the world. Ralph Lauren is the first luxury brand to launch a fitness shirt with sensors designed to monitor heart rate, stress levels and movement, tapping into the consumer trend of self-monitoring for self-improvement.

However, not all luxury giants are willing to compete in the digital space and prefer to remain firmly in the world of tradition and limited exclusivity. French luxury leather goods manufacturer Goyard has yet to offer the same online shopping experience that their competitors, and state quite proudly that: “Goyard products are available exclusively at Goyard boutiques worldwide. Goyard does not engage in any form of e-commerce.” As proud of this as they may be, will Goyard be left behind in terms of consumer expectation, and will their customers accept this inflexibility to move forward or innovate?

Creativity, innovation and differentiation are crucial to digital marketing, and brands must invest in creating original, engaging content or risk getting left behind. Brands such as Guerlain and Cartier have shown resounding success from their innovations, without compromising their fundamental values.

Digital marketing allows brands the opportunity to build relationships with new and existing customers globally. It’s the data from digital marketing which allows brands to measure the customer interaction and this data has to be utilised to understand and improve customer experience and to understand what they truly want.

Luxury brands understand that consumers want to be engaged and taken on a journey. Consumers are no longer passive, they want to be impressed and inspired and be part of a two way conversation. This understanding of what consumers both desire and react to, is something that every sector needs to learn from. Luxury is no longer just about tradition and heritage; it’s nimble, quick and paving the way for digital innovative and engagement.

Appeared in Digital Marketing Magazine 

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