How brands are speaking to a new generation of shoppers who don’t care for ads

Gucci is reaping the rewards of spinning its marketing direction towards this group of young buyers and many other brands are getting on board.

Gucci Fall 2017 campaign

Gucci reported a soar in organic sales of 49% in Q3 of this year according to its parent company Kering Group. This follows a 48% and 39% growth over Q1 and Q2 respectively.

A big part of its growth is credited to Alessandro Michele’s design ethos that’s targeted at millennials and Gen Z, from his fresh, spunky designs on collections to his continually bold fashion shows at which these collections are premiered. Let’s not forget the brand’s bizarre but mesmerising digital campaigns complete with the weird but fascinating elements – extraterresterials and multi-dimensional concepts – that endear millennials so.

It’s unconventional but perhaps that’s exactly why it works so well.

Gucci is reaping the rewards of spinning its marketing direction towards this group of young buyers and many other brands are getting on board.

Here’s a look at how the rest are keeping up.

SKII #YourStatementYourBottle

SKII, which long targeted middle-aged women with its anti-ageing products, took a very different turn by employing 20-something K-pop star and actress Choi Soo Young to front its ‘Change is in all of us’ campaign. It crafted a narrative of being fearless in going after your calling with hashtags like #YourStatementYourBottle with an equally refreshing bottle design. Graffiti-esque fonts have taken over the elegant silver and gold stencils of SKII past, as has a dynamic video of skateboarding and bubblegum-chewing shot on an industrial rooftop replaced the sophisticated couches and feminine white silk sheets the brand has long tried to associate with its name. W sk-ii.com.my

Christian Louboutin Loubitag

A match made in Loubitag heaven. So Kate takes on the town with Cabata in tow.

A post shared by Christian Louboutin (@louboutinworld) on

Christian Louboutin made his name with shoes that let its wearers shine while assisting in the quietest and mutest of elegance – his bestsellers are the patent leather classic Pigalle stilettos, most recognisable by being plain and boasting a blood red back. Things are changing up now with its latest Loubitag collection that banks in on a frenzy of colours in ways that are quite the opposite of the classic Louboutin design motto. It is loud, it is disorganised, but more importantly, it is fresh and individualistic, allowing its wearer to express herself. W asia.christianlouboutin.com

Fendi’s Girl Gang

After the cutest East invasion with Fendi-kun and Rumi-chan – the fur monster mascots that toured Hong Kong, Korea and Singapore, among other key cities – Fendi continues its streak of marketing targeted at the young with a series of campaigns featuring current It girls Kaia Gerber, Gigi Hadid, Kendall Jenner and Vittoria Ceretti, just to name a few. In their choice of faces, you can already see the pattern of a new wave of trendsetters being called to the forefront for their influence in swaying and persuading the buying and fashion choices of buyers who live largely on social media. These are the current reigning queens on Instagram after all. W fendi.com

Coach x Selena Gomez

Perhaps one of the earliest to realise the selling power of a young starlet, her touch on things and a quick way to tap into her following is Coach, who from as early as last year has been cooking a special edition bag collection with singer and actress Selena Gomez. Not only did they give her creative rein on designing the capsule collection (and scrawling all over it with her signature) they took it a step further by throwing a worldwide giveaway in which winners stood a chance to take home the autographed bag and win a trip to New York – home of Coach. Their partnership continues into this year in what looks like a successful and enduring contract. W malaysia.coach.com

Balmain and its many collaborations

The most interesting yet is Balmain’s formula for diversification. Not only is it hitting a vertical tier in terms of age, it is targetting a horizontal breadth of consumer range by venturing out of its luxury designer market into mass. It does so in the cleverest of ways that doesn’t jeopardise its own positioning – by borrowing the fanbase of other lower end brands and lending his touch to it. There was the H&M collaboration a few years ago, and then there was the L’Oreal Paris Color Riche lipsticks for which the designer formulated 12 exclusive shades. Most recently, Balmain was also part of the Victoria’s Secret 2017 Fashion Show in Shanghai, where his signature punk rock designs infiltrated the pretty and pink lineup Victoria’s Secret is known for. W victoriassecret.com

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