Author: Zafar Rais, CEO, MindShift Interactive
Luxury brands differ in their strategy and approach on various social media platforms. With the rise of digital marketing changing the way luxury brands engage with customers, traditional companies must embrace the hyper connected, mobile centric audience preferences or be left behind. Online and mobile shopping for luxury goods has increased rapidly in India, thanks to the fast-paced penetration of smartphones.
Luxury brands for the longest have associated online shopping with eCommerce and feared that selling their elite products through multi brand retail websites would harm their brand image. The general assumption was that luxury shoppers wouldn’t take to shopping for expensive goods online, preferring experience buying in a store.According to a research done by McKinsey and the Italian industry group – Altagamma Foundation, this trend has now shifted. Luxury brands today have recognized the need for a strong online presence, conversing with their consumers online whilst also being available online for quick purchases. Social media enables consumers with honest opinions on products and services, allowing consumers to take far more informed decisions. With the rise of influence by bloggers as the go-to solution for reviews, recommendations and advice, it has become increasingly important for luxury brands to ensure they are building relationships and nurturing the same.
eCommerce is one facet of digital opportunity. Luxury shoppers today are avid social media users and react well to digital campaigns. They are actively visiting Facebook Pages or Instagram handles, clicking on advertising banners, viewing product reviews and How-To videos on YouTube whilst following social media influencers and their opinions about products. Well executed and targeted digital campaigns trigger online purchases as well as lead towards an increase in store footfalls. A campaign such as #GoNoFilter executed by Lancôme India was one such example of a niche digital campaign that tapped consumer insights and touched consumer sentiments, leading to a boost in awareness and sales.
Brands need to work on strategies which go beyond just an attractive website. Creating the perfect blend of social media and mobile presence, it also requires careful selection of a set of digital performance metrics. Mobile evolution has been on a high since the last decade and brands must capitalize on the growing smartphone user to engage him or her into a relationship with them, on the move. The m-commerce wave has led to smartphones and tablets becoming a popular choice to shop online.
Leading Luxury brands such as Burberry, Michael Kors, Lancôme, JW Marriott are breaking the clutter through innovative strategies that explore digital prospects across their offerings and have created a shift in the experience of a luxury shopper. The key to luxury shopping in the age of social media is by being true to the brand and its consumers by keeping it niche and tasteful.
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