When we think of French luxury, an image of a woman from the bourgeois sipping expensive red wine off a balcony in Paris’s 7th Arrondissement may come to mind. The French perhaps even can be credited for inventing luxury, in the days of royalty, Versailles, and a class based hierarchical system. Luxury was exclusivity.
Now when people think of luxury they often think of personal jets, access to services a touch away on their a mobile app, maybe even their Apple Watch or FitBit. American luxury has come to mean speed, technology, accessibility of services no matter where you are. It’s often based on money, and rather than being exclusive to a certain social class, it’s an aspiration for all.
Luxury has evolved and so have the methods of communicating it. With the advent of social media branding, if brands choose to remain out of the digital space, others will communicate for it. As a colleague recently said at the luxury conference in Paris, “Everyone is talking about you, so you may as well acknowledge it and enter the conversation.” Brands that have embraced social media, such as Chanel and Gucci, as well those that have focused creative content online, such as Burberry and Hermes, have stayed ahead of the digital, inclusive revolution.
But luxury also needs to remain tailored, specialized, individualized. One of our clients described, “I have to limit my event to 300 people because I won’t be able to personally meet more people than that.” The importance of personal touch, the experience, and creating that special moment, should never be lost. Luxury must always remain luxurious.
My conviction is that luxury doesn’t mean choosing between being inclusive and exclusive – is must be both. For me, exclusivity can be defined as limited access to memorable moments for a selected few. We believe in creating memorable connections through producing haute brand experiences such as flagship openings, product launches, press events, and exhibits.
But it’s through the amplification of these moments that we become inclusive.
We build 360 communication plan which include social media strategy, e-commerce, specialized public relations, curated partnerships, and an engaging online presence. For example, engaging younger consumers from Gen Z to millennials through social media platforms early on can help develop brand loyalty for years to come. All of this can pay off for a brand that wants to retain its status but also relevance today.
It’s always about that special touch, and bringing the brand and product come to life for your clients, but not forgetting that who they are has come a long way.