The use of social media in luxury brands

Social media now is an indispensable part of people’s life. Nearly every brand has stepped into social media for marketing and public relations. It is not uncommon to find that luxury brands also take a great use of social media to reach their targeted audience. It doesn’t mean that people will spend hundreds of dollars to buy a designed product only because they read something from its Facebook page. It means luxury brands are getting involved in people’s conversations through social media. The next question is which one is best for luxury brands, considering numerous social media platforms, like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, Pinterest, Flickr, Foursquare, Weibo…

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Sarah Mahoney argues that Instagram is the best place for luxury brands because it has the highest engagement from the audience. In her report, she says that a survey of 249 luxury brands finds that 93% are currently on Instagram, up from 63% in July of last year. And while it is just one-tenth the size of Facebook (which acquired it back in 2012), it has 15 times the level of user engagement that Facebook does. And Pinterest, about a third of Instagram’s size, has only about a third of the level of engagement that Instagram users do.

 

Then what do these brands do on Instagram and other social media? Giving discounts? Offering give-aways? There are a lot more things that could be done. According to Dioni L. Wise, researchers from the University of Buffalo’s Department of Communications describe the three main functions of using social media for nonprofits as (1) information, (2) community and (3) action. The same goes for luxury brands.

 

Michael Kors has more than 2m followers on Instagram. It constantly post information about the products, the brand and matching advices. These posts not only build a good relationship between the brand and audience, but also are useful in encouraging people to purchase its products. The average number of likes for each post is 50k. That means more than 50k people know about what MK promotes and MK pays nothing for it!

 

Social media is an excellent PR method for luxury brands! Share with me your thoughts about it in your comments!

 

 

 

 

Five minutes to know Burberry

BBurberryurberry is a word that you cannot avoid if you want to talk about English luxury brands. It is one of the most famous, popular and historical luxury brands in the world, with outwear as its core. Talking about this 156 years old brand, some words automatically show up in my mind: elegant, noble and classic.

Burberry ScarfThe most popular products in this brand are its wool scarves and trench coats. They are in dominant place in their respective market. There even is a website designed for trench coats owners to share pictures of how they style in different trench coats: Art of the Trench. It’s like a narrowed social websites only for trench coats owners.

Although Burberry is one of the oldest luxury brands in fashion industry, it is really dynamic in using social media to attract young people’s attention. It has account in almost every major online social platform, and those accounts are all well maintained. A info graphic can show what a nice job Burberry has done on different platforms

Burberry has lots of innovation on its digital engagement. The S/S13 main campaign brought lots of awareness through social and traditional media. The video of S/S13 launched by Burberry have got more than 1.7 million views on YouTube! Burberry also does a good job on Twitter and Chinese Weibo to offer fashion news and styling advice. The womenswear A/W13 show was streamed live on Twitter for the first time, allowing followers to embed the show stream in personal websites. So you can imagine how much attention Burberry has brought to itself during the fashion show. Burberry finished the year as the most followed luxury brand on Facebook, with nearly 15 million fans.

Five Minutes to Know Louis Vuitton

www.louisvuitton.comFor most women, LV may be the first brand name they know about luxury brands when they were girls. Celebrities constantly show up on televisions with LV’s products, and the advertisements of it can be seen nearly in every big city in the world and LV is almost an inevitable world if you want to have a conversation about luxury goods with your friends. I don’t know whether Mr. Louis Vuitton foresee that the store he started in 1854 on Rue Neuve des Capucines in Paris could worth over USD $24 billion in 2014 (Forbes, 2014). According to a Millward Brown 2010 study, Louis Vuitton is the world’s 29th most valuable brand, right after Gillette and before Wells Fargo.

Then, what make this French company so special and critical in the world of luxury brands? I think there are two points: the history of LV leaves lots of classic design, which puts LV in the first in this field; the continuously creating of new classics makes LV stay where it is.

www.louisvuitton.comFor the last 160 years, LV and its monogram had been unquestioning classics in the world of luxury goods, and they still are. But a brand like LV does not gain its place by sitting there and benefiting from ancestors’ designs. Classic designs stay in the stores every year, like Neverful series of totes. New designs come to the store every year, which often lead the trend in luxury fashion industry. For now, take handbags for an example, LV offers 317 kinds of different designs for women handbags only, and that was just one part of its business. Starting from making trunks, LV now offers leather goods, handbags, trunks, shoes, watches, jewelry and accessories.

Among all the products, there are ones that are extremely expensive. A price of a bag may be a entire year’s tuition of a college student, may be even bigger than the price of a well-functioning second-handed car, may be able to keep a family running for a whole month. But there are some products that may just cost you the money you buy several books. LV offers not only to ones who can afford ten-second cars, but also to ones who like pretty things but won’t go too fat for them.

http://instagram.com/fiounazhangDespites its strategies, LV also benefits from its powerful parent company. LV’s parent company is LVMH Moët Hennessy • Louis Vuitton S.A., better known as LVMH. This group controls lots of luxury brands on the market, not just in luxury fashion industry, but also in wine, jewelry, beauty and luxury brands retailing, all together 46 brands. Most of them are quite famous. You can hear the names of these brands every year in fashion weeks, like Celine, Dior, Fendi, Kenzo, Marc Jacobs.

 

 

Reference:

http://www.forbes.com/companies/louis-vuitton/

Five Minutes to Know Longchamp

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Longchamp is a classic French luxury brand that is famous for its simple design handbags. It is a 60-year-old brand that remains family-owned management. Longchamp describes itself on its intagram page as a world leader in leather goods that bring together craftsmanship, creativity & French elegance.

I quite like this brand, and have some of its products, because I think the products of this brand are not so conspicuous like the ones from Louis Vuitton or Gucci. And the price is more approachable. The design is not very trendy but surely will not be out of date in short period of time.

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Among all the products, the “Le Pliage” series are the most popular ones, and they are my favorite collections. “Le Pliage” means “folding” in French. This kind of bags can be folded after using, so that they won’t take up too much space. The foldable bags are made of canvas and leather trim. They are light in weight, simple in design, but very classic and popular.

The history of this leather goods luxury brand is quite interesting, because Longchamp’s founder, Jean Cassegrain, at the beginning owned a tabacco shop. Then he made some money by selling leather coverings for pipes and cigarette cases. He grasped the opportunity and opened a store to sell no tabacco but only leather goods. Then Longchamp was born.

      The price of Longchamp’s products is comparatively less expensive. For example, a Le Pliage bag will cost $100 to $200, based on the size of bags. Maybe that is because the bags are no

照片 14-3-6 15 53 19副本       In recent years, Longchamp has broadened its products lines to provide various kinds of leather goods for not only women, but men. They also offer small leather goods, shoes, accessories, scarves, umbrellas and some ready-to-wears. The brand now has more than 236 boutiques and a total of more than 1,800 stores in the world.t completely made of leather, but a mix of leather and canvas. This kind of pricing makes Longchamp a very unique choice for shoppers. They are not very expensive, but stylish and classic. Their lightweights can be a very good advantage for travel bags. So the target audiences of Longchamp are workingwomen, women who always travel, and a part of school girls.

 

Five minutes to know kate Spade

照片 14-3-4 23 08 05Kate Spade is a New York based company that targets to young women who are in their twenties and teens. The brand sells various fashion products: from handbags and clothing to jewelry, shoes, stationery, eyewear, baby, fragrance, tabletop, bedding and gifts. It has over 80 retail shops and outlet stores across the United States, and more than 100 shops internationally.

The price of Kate Spade’s products is often between $150 to $600 dollars. It is a comparatively middle pricing level in luxury fashion industry. Take its handbags as an example. There are 135 kinds bags available in their store. The cheapest is $98 and the most expensive one is $598. In Louis Vuitton, there’s nearly no handbags that is under $1000. However, in other middle luxury brands, the pricing are similar, like in Michael Kors, its main competitor.

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The design of Kate Spade is very uncomplicated and colorful. Actually, I think among all the luxury brands, Kate Spade offers the most colorful products and promotes the most colorful lifestyle. They seldom use dark blue or brown for their shoes and bag, instead, they frequently launch dress and handbags in light green, pink and other bright colors. All of those show dynamic, brightness and sense of youth. They says this on their website: “crisp color, graphic prints and playful sophistication are hallmarks of kate spade new york.” In their social media accounts, they even hash tag “live colorfully” and “dress colorfully” to tell the world: Kate Spade is a colorful world! Come and shop for some bright color!

Kate Spade was founded by Ms. Kate Spade back in 1993. At that time, the brand sold only handbags. With time went on, the brand was known by more and more people, it extended to other categories in fashion industry. They began to offer address books, shoes, beauty products, perfume, raincoats, pajamas, and eyewear. In 2004, “Kate Spade at home” was launched as a home collection brand. It features bedding, bath items, china, wallpaper and various items for the home.

照片 14-2-9 20 28 00Kate Spade was sold to Neiman Marcus, a large luxury brands retailer, in 1999. In 2006 Fifth & Pacific Inc bought the company, but in 2007, the founders rebought the brand back and decide to run it in a new way. Now Kate Spade’s sales is in a very good condition. Sales growth has risen dramatically from $91 million in 2008 to $462 million in 2013, a 410% increase. It even has a corresponding brand, which sells men’s fashion products: Jack Spade.

Reference:

Kate Spade, (2014) Retrieved March 5, 2014 from http://www.katespade.com

Company Profile, (2014) Retrieved March 5, 2014 from https://www.katespade.com/THE-COMPANY/katespade-the-company,en_US,pg.html

Five Minutes to Know Michael Kors

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Michael Kors is an American fashion brand, founded by designer Michael Kors more than 30 years ago in New York. It provides simple but stylish design.  It is famous for precious materials, cashmere knitwear and luxury sportswear.

The brand offers two collections: the Michael Kors luxury collection and the MICHAEL Michael Kors accessible luxury collection. The Michael Kors collection is publicized by semi-annual runway shows. Lots of celebrities wear its ready-to-wear clothes for carpets or events, like supermodels Miranda Kerr and Alessandra Ambrosio. Besides apparel, this collection also offers handbags and accessories made from high quality leathers.

The MICHAEL Michael Kors collection is targeting younger consumers’ demand for accessible luxury products. The design is more practical and simple and the price is more reasonable. This collection focuses more on shoes and apparel which are less expensive than the other collection. For example, the price of this collection’s dress ranges from $84 to $325. In the Michael Kors collection, the price ranges from $795 to $4995.

Michael Kors was not as popular as it is now in 1980s. However, with the popularity of Grunge style,   the practical but luxurious brand met it first big growth. Its good performance in the market draws the attention of LVMH, the French luxury good group. Now Michael Kors is under LVMH. Mr. Kors was appointed as chief designer of Celine, a very famous French luxury brand.

Michael Kors grows in a fast speed since going public at the end of 2011. For example, according to luxe.co, in 2013, the revenue ups 59%. on February 4, the stock price went up 17% as the annual report of 2013 was publicized. Like most luxury brands, Kors benefits from three major strengths: appeal, availability, and pricing power. By Dec 28, 2013, there are 395 Michael Kors company run stores in the world and 138 licensed stores.

Mr. Kors, the founding designer, now has more than 1 billion assets because of 2% stock shares and other properties. He is a “practical dreamer” who designs clothes for practical but fashionable women. He has a famous saying like this:  it’s not a crime that luxury brands offer clothes which people can wear them out, instead of just walking on red carpets. Mr. Kors has received a number of awards, including the CFDA Women’s Fashion Designer of the Year (1999), the CFDA Men’s Fashion Designer of the Year (2003), the ACE Accessory Designer of the Year (2006) and the CFDA Lifetime Achievement Award (2010).

Reference:

Michael Kors (2014) Retrieved February 26, 2014, from http://www.michaelkors.com/

Corporate Profile, (2014). Retrieved February 26, 2014, from http://phx.corporate-ir.net/phoenix.zhtml?c=235654&p=irol-homeprofile

Marder, A. (2012) An Introduction to Michael Kors. Retrieved February 26, 2014, from http://www.fool.com/investing/general/2012/11/26/an-introduction-to-michael-kors.aspx

Five Minutes to Know Furla

www.furla.com/us

     Furla is an Italian luxury brand which is famous for its simple and elegant design. It aims to be an expression of authentic Italian style, which means natural elegance, refinement and creativity. Its Italian design with style has made its mark on the international stage. Furlanetto founded it over 80 years ago and it still maintains family ownership combined with a managerial company structure. Furla express this way of management as a tradition that is constantly renewed.

      Furla’s most famous series of products is “Candy Bags”. They are candy shaped bags in jelly like material. They are often in bright colors like yellow, red, pink, light blue and orange. Furla discribes them like this on its website: “‘Candy Bag’, icon of the fusion between innovation, creativity and tradition that characterize the brand Furla, is realized in a soft and resistant special type of pvc.The lovely metal lock that decorates the zipper closure of the bag and the brilliant colors in which it is made of, let Candy Bag to be a functional and fabulous must-have. You can buy it on-line or in every Furla store.” This series is designed to reach younger consumers to show their beauty of youth.

      However, Furla now is more focused on promoting its bags other than Candy. The design emphasis more about the beauty of simplicity. Furla explains the design as Italian style, which means natural elegance, refinement and creativity. This kind of design targets to women in work place, while “Candy” is more suitable for weekend life. Besides handbags, Furla also produce accessories, watches and shoes.

      Advertising Campaign:SPRING/SUMMER 2014 “Creativity Speaks Italian“. This campaign was shot in Paris by the emerging photographer Marton Perlaki. The French model Maud Le Fort represents the sophisticated yet casual kind of contemporary women. Furla in its website, said this about its campaign: “The campaign traces a multiple aesthetic narrative, touching on Furla’s exclusive line of jewellery, in which a philosophy of elegance and versatility pervades not only the products, but the very identity of the brand, becoming a true lifestyle experience embracing every aspect of modern living. “

      Furla has a special project to interact with its consumers: WonderFurla. Consumers can upload their pictures in which they carry or wear a Furla product. Pictures will show on Furla’s websites and everyone can see how others are dressing to match Furla bags.

      Its headquarters is in Bologna, in a historic 18th century villa, and it has 320 stores (2013) all over the world, from London to Tokyo, New York to Singapore. The products of Furla can be seen in most internationally well-known shopping streets, like Via dei Condotti in Rome, Rue Saint-Honorè in Paris, Ginza in Tokyo, Madison Avenue in New York and Regent Street in London.

 

Reference:
Furla Weibo (2014), Retrieved February 12nd, 2014, from http://www.weibo.com/furlaofficial?topnav=1&wvr=5&topsug=1
Furla (2014),Retrieved February 12nd, 2014, from  www.furla.com