Hermès – Apps and Orange Boxes Observatory

Hermès is certainly having a great year. Following up from my last post on ‘Je Suis Un Cheval‘ and ‘Saddle Personaliser‘ here are the other initiatives by Hermès that certainly top the luxury fashion brand digital campaigns list.

The Break App

The App is best described by the brand on their YouTube channel as

A random dose of Hermès
The handy app to help you take a break from the harsh realities of office, airport or public transport…or even a dull date.
Pull the tie and let the game begin!

Each time the user opens the app there is a new surprise content in form of short films, games, tie pattern videos, funny stories, new collection info and even tutorials/tips on how to tie a tie. The fun part is that the user has to pull on the signature orange tie to reveal a new piece of content.

Silk Knots App

The Silk Knots App shows the latest collection of scarves and step-by-step guide on they can be worn in so many interesting ways, as we see in the video preview.

Besides the apps that focus on their signature collections, Hermès also launched an interactive version of their bi-annual magazine on tablets Le Monde d’Hermès.

Users interact with each piece of content and create an origami bestiary out of a selection of images and share these with their friends. The call-to-action drives readers directly to the store locator with the message saying ‘ Where can I find Le Monde d’Hermès?

After all this great work, there is finally some fun content on the Orange Boxes, the DNA of the Hermès packaging and corporate brand identity. I really like how Hermès tries to imagine what the Orange Boxes are actually up to. A series of short films show different shapes and sizes of Hermès boxes doing funny things representing a wild creature…I mean we see animation revealing animal-like behaviour in a fun way. The series of videos have been released on their Facebook page and on a playlist on the YouTube Channel. So far there are 6 videos, may be more to come.

To sum up, the color orange became a part of the Hermès packaging since the World War II post era, when there was shortage of paper supplies and orange colored bags were mostly more easily available and till today the color remains and the orange boxes have evolved over the years and look as luxurious as their products.

Hopefully there is an app coming on the ‘Orange Boxes’. Oooo! I have ideas….but won’t give it away here 😉

Hermès Défilé Autumn-Winter 2014 campaign

Refreshing! A pure luxury!

We rarely come across ‘Fashion’ brand websites that do not require you to click at least 5-6 times to get to the final destination page. And getting more in exchange of doing less and getting it in just 1-2 clicks online today is certainly a luxury. Hermès made an effort to identify and reflect the ‘less is more’ and ‘online user behavior insights’ in their recent ‘Défilé’ Autumn-Winter 2014 collection microsite.

Screen Shot 2014-03-10 at 18.04.05

The landing page loads with a video starting in the background and showing a thin designer strip which upon hovering over shows a thumbnail of the outfit worn by the next model. You can click on it and skip the other episodes and watch the cat-walk you like. This is the simple and basic part.

What is best about this is if you notice the ‘Instagram’ icon on the top right. It shows a stream of Instagram images – displaying the time it was taken and the number of likes it received. Clicking on the image will open the ‘Instagram’ account in a new window and does not take open it in the same window. Many brands ignore these small details that can greatly enhance a desired user experience.

Hermes Defile

The site is available in obviously two languages – English and French and also shares Call-to-action to visit the main Hermès.com website and also share the experience online via Facebook, Twitter and Google+. The Social Share copies and images are also optimized relating to the content shown on the website.

HermesSocialShare

Many brands ignore these tiny details which are in fact the online face of the brand when they get out of their own platform and enter the ‘Social Playground’. It is always refreshing and nice to see for a huge digital marketing fan like me that there are Marketing and UX teams out there who think through and take the pains to get all these details right. Least I can do is take out time to appreciate such work and share the experience and appreciation.

While we are at it, check out their Tumblr and Pinterest pages as well for inspiration. Tumblr page header animation shows even a highly regarded luxury brand like Hermès can have some fun in a subtle way.

Hermes_Tumblr_Pinterest

 

Burberry introduces Smart Personalisation

Burberry has introduced Smart Personalisation for their Prorsum Autumn/Winter 2013 runway Made To Order collection. Customers can order products like costs and bags from the runway and receive in 9 weeks with personalized engraved nameplates.

Each item holds a tag containing a video celebrating their dedication to design and craftsmanship and shows the making of the personalized item featuring their nameplate. These tags are not RFID but a similar technology developed by Burberry.

The video can be unlocked by scanning the tags and one of the best experience for people in London is to view the video on the huge walls at Burberry’s flagship store in London’s Regent Street, where these walls turn into huge screens playing the personalized video.

This is definitely a smart move in digital by Burberry and will be interesting to see how the customers react to it and spread the word. This also seems to be some kind of test that Burberry is doing to learn about such technology, customer behavior and its relevance. It is definitely a huge investment and will be useful to see how it rolls out and adds value besides making the customer feel hyper special!

Projection at NY Fashion Week‘13

The brand ‘I am not a Virgin’ produces jeans without harming the environment, using cotton and a variety of recycled materials like plastic bottles, food trays and even X-ray films.

At the NY Fashion Week’13, the brand held a funny projection to create awareness and get noticed among the top brands at the Fashion Week.

The new + younger fashion brands are now talking to their audience using the tone and words that young people can today relate to these days and are a part of their daily conversation. Such cheeky activities instantly become shareable on social networks and such small clever investments are worth an effort to get noticed and use the power of word of mouth!

View the collection here

ianav

Hugo Boss 3D Fashion Show

Luxury brands are being praised a lot lately with regard to their approach with online marketing. Most luxury brands have shown the same high standards online as offline and at the same time have utilized the advanced technology with sense and without cheapening it. Jimmy Choo using Foursquare, Calvin Klein using QR codes, live streaming of fashion shows on Facebook tabs by Gucci, iPad apps and magazines and brilliant experiential websites by Chanel and Cartier to name a few are some good examples to prove the same. But for Hugo Boss it just did not stop here, they jumped in the 3D world before anyone else did to launch the “first 3D fashion show ever” to be streamed on Facebook , Website and Mobile.

3D can be very exciting if done well and if the content is interesting. FCUK, London launched 3D outdoor billboards in Oxford Circus, London last year outside their stores and people could see them by getting into the store, picking up the glasses and going out to see the billboards/window displays. Such a stunt raised footfalls in the store and created a lot of exciting buzz on the social networks. Hugo Boss has taken 3D to another level when their online audience have reached a decent number and worth spending billions to bring rich content to these users.

To create excitement of their 3D Boss Black Fashion Show Beijing they communicated using all the relevant and current online social trends like Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, iPad, Websites and even enewsletters. To make the viewing even special they allowed interested users to order special limited edition Hugo Boss branded 3D glasses to see the show online.  Following is what I noticed was done well:-

Instagram

Considering that Instagram is quite new for the brands and many of them are still not using it even though they know they should because they are not sure what value it will bring and how to actually approach it. But we have many brands who have the budgets, their targets and their teams in place to exploit Instagram. Hugo Boss being one of them, used Instagram, in a subtle and non-intruding way to reach their followers. How many times have we seen people exploding the stream with their updates and a brand doing so with irrelevant or dull pictures will certainly not take us more than a few seconds to unfollow them unless we decide to go back if a reward is attractive enough to take the news feed exploding pain.

Hugo Boss created a 3D effect for all their content online even the videos. For Instagram all the pictures from the day of announcing 3D fashion show were rendered in a 3D fashion as shown below. Some of them actually looked cool with 3D glasses and some not so appealing. But all in all, it intrigued the current and potential users with the buzz about the 3D fashion show. In terms of content the pictures were interesting and had an “insiders” theme to it creating even more interest and wait for the LIVE stream of the fashion show.

Facebook 

Hugo Boss Facebook page offered not only the gossip and insiders content like photos, updates and videos but also allowed Facebook fans to create their own 3D photos with a hallmark of 3D Hugo Boss in Chinese. The design and steps taken to create a picture were minimum and to-the-point. It did not distract the user at all and used Facebook functionality to make it easy and quick for users to create their picture with no hassles. The share functionality was properly optimized for Facebook showing a screenshot of the image user created and giving apt description for the same.  A lot of times we see many brands being lazy about optimizing the share copy/content for whatever reasons and it is nice to see that Hugo Boss has made an effort to get all details on-brand and in the 3D campaign theme.

It does not just end here, there was a LIVE STREAMING on Facebook application and there were no unnecessary call-to-actions distracting the user. Hugo Boss skipped using a chat box for all users watching the show and decided to use that area to allow users to sign-up for more content following the show. This kind of makes sense for now since the 3D show was intriguing and could have generated a lot of comments but then at the same time it was not an extraordinary one as well, so I believe to avoid the embarrassment of having a low engagement on comments, why not get higher views and get the ones “actually” interested to sign-up for more news by the brand. There was also an option to view it in 2D for people who did not have the glasses.

Twitter

Hugo Boss exploited Twitter features by using animated 3D Twitter profile picture and updating the look with relevant messaging on banners and background designs. What I like the most about the way they used both Twitter and Facebook is that all the 3D glasses which were mailed to users who signed up were definitely cool and got a lot of recognition online via tweets and Facebook updates. Hugo Boss posted all the pictures being tweeted by their followers on Facebook as a separate album and shared engaged people with what they were missing otherwise not being on Twitter. A lot of retweets were seen by Hugo Boss promoting the gossip, news and user content on their 3D Fashion show. They even used a hashtag for the event #hugobossfashionshow and encouraged Instagram and Twitter users to use the same for sharing content and aggregating it all over one place and shows just a few results but it is also because the hashtag was not well communicated from the beginning I guess. Might be one of those last minute decisions to use it I guess.

Overall I would rate 7/10 for their Twitter and Facebook efforts, they could have communicated the hashtag earlier on, maybe used Promoted Tweets and given some Hugo Boss limited edition 3D design merchandise away celebrating the same. I bet many people would have “bought” that.

YouTube

On their YouTube channel Hugo Boss added a 3D flair by giving users an insight into the diary of “Miss Hugo Boss” and all the video content was in 3D. There were short clippings on the fashion journey to Beijing and was good to see how not only photos but even videos were transferred into a 3D effect for the show.

Website

The website used Facebook and Twitter widgets below the LIVE STREAM box to let users share their thoughts on the show. There seems to be a low engagement here but then I’m sure many people watched the show and were not necessarily into making comments. How do you actually make a comment while using 3D glasses anyways, you can just watch the show and leave the rest to after the show is over.

The 3D glasses

I managed to sign-up on time to receive 3D glasses by mail in time and I swear I loved the entire package. I have always signed up for goodies and limited edition launches for brands including many luxury brands but this one so far has been quite special. Hugo Boss stuck to their luxury roots and their perfection for details. They could have just handed over basic glasses but they took time to brand it, created package with 3D effect to headlines, branded 3D black awesome glasses and even mentioned the local timings for top cities like New York, London, Beijing, Berlin, Los Angeles, Sydney and Tokyo.

To conclude, we can see how thought through the campaign was. I am sure it was supported by online banners as well but I did not really see any so no updates from me on that end. I really liked all the elements I got a chance to interact with and I hope we see more such campaigns from Hugo Boss and other top luxury brands, who can use the technology fashionably and create case studies and lessons for other brands to learn from. Even today we see many brands who do not consider the details and fail to deliver an overall great package but Hugo Boss has proved that details really count and can help to shape and add a positive effect to the overall theme and picture of a campaign as big as this.

Explore Hugo Boss on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube  and their website.

Facebook Likes on Clothes Hangers

C&A, the famous European fashion retailer, has launched an interesting Facebook campaign in Brazil called “Fashion Likes”. The Facebook Likes are displayed on the clothing hangers in real-time i.e. the clothing items photos are posted on their Facebook page and as soon as they receive a like the clothing hanger like count is updated. The real time updates let the shoppers know what is trendy/popular online and worth trying out and buying.

I really like this concept but I wonder how many people will actually be willing to consider what is voted for the most online. For some it may not be a personal preference and hence does this render this entire ” fashion like” activity useless, do people feel offended that by buying something ridiculously popular online makes them want to be dressed like everyone else believing that vote and feeling that one never used their opinion and just went with a Facebook ranking? For some people clothes shopping can be very serious and personal since it defines who they are, want to be perceived as, etc. Moreover, what happens when an item gets really low likes and if you happen to like it, do you get that look “ooh, buying the one with the least likes”. Although good thing about such a campaign could be that the people who commit a fashion suicide might secretly consider these “fashion likes” to save them a social breath!

View more photos on https://www.facebook.com/ceaBrasil