Tell me a Story: LUXury Branded Content

We have been reviewing  2010 campaigns of  luxury brands and their branded content and its been impressive.  2010 was a stellar year.

Jude Law’s appearance,  directed by Guy Ritchie for Christian Dior Men’s Cologne, the Louis Vuitton iphone app  and Museum opening in Paris, to Burberry’s “Art of the Trench”  or the Hermes “Skateboard” mini-film;  the emergence of Branded digital content has been a key trend in luxury marketing this past year.  From an entertainment perspective or cultural perspective, the LVMH brands have an established track record  in making themselves relevant.  The most digital of the luxury brands and in the forefront has been Burberry. Now we’re well into 2011 and the story continues with a new initiative from one luxury company after another.  This week,  Bottega Veneta released its campaign where we saw a gorgeous couple on vacation. Filmed in an intimate and revealing manner,  this dreamy pair was obviously on a trip together. The viewer is also experiencing a voyeuristic view of these two lounging around a luxury hotel room, the luggage carefully placed  with other BV products to fill out the story.  What does all this mean?  Let’s see….mysterious, sensual, unique voyages, perhaps.  Living a beautifully well appointed life with Bottega Veneta products. Priceless.

That’s what a really good piece of  “Advertainment” should be:  aspirational,  elegant and beautifully  made. Add in a dash of  “effortlessness” to make the brand image complete.  The choice of the channel for this curated content is also critical.  Film with its very 20th century appeal is an extension of the glossy magazine editorial that once dominated this space.  A film has a unique character and cultural significance as a medium. With its ability to be distributed through a variety of channels the luxury ‘short film’ has a power of its own. There is a fancy word for this, in ‘marketing-speak’, but we’ll skip those and tell you that really great branded content is emotional and is designed to create an attachment to those that experience it. The story, as we have often said, is really what makes all the elements come together to close the sale.  It needs to have an interesting ending that satisfies the audience, just like a mainstream movie does.  Film is a powerful medium of persuasion and in today’s digital landscape, many brands are falling pray to the idea that breaking up the linear narrative refreshes the medium.  We disagree.  A story has a beginning, middle and end. To eliminate all or part of this equation takes away the power to sell the idea.  Identity, History, Value and Craftsmanship are also a key part of this story.  This makes  luxury branding different from other kinds of marketing.  Its a unique animal with special needs that begin, and end, with a great story.

We’re just thrilled to see Jude Law being a gorgeous rogue,  splashing on that Dior men’s cologne.  Now, if we could just arrange that rendevous with our Bottega Veneta luggage….

The Editor