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Luxury in 2018: Shepherding clients in 2018 will require agencies to provide clients with expertise one can’t find in-house

TO BEGIN WITH, A FEW SWEEPING GENERALIZATIONS ON THE TENDENCIES WE’RE SEEING WITH LUXURY BRANDS AS WE LOOK TO THE YEAR AHEAD ARE LARGER COMPANIES’ CONTINUED INVESTMENT IN BRINGING SPECIALIST SKILLSETS IN-HOUSE, CONSOLIDATION OF MARKETING FUNCTIONS AND, PARTICULARLY IN THE U.K. AND EUROPE, TOUGHER BUDGETS COUPLED WITH LONGER MARKETING WISH-LISTS.

Shepherding clients in 2018 will require agencies to provide clients with expertise one can’t find in-house, unlocking new opportunities as well as tangible savings and ultimately making their lives simpler rather than more complex.

Guidance with data and new legislations is essential, as Europe also gets ready for the new European Union General Data Protection Regulations to become effective in May.

At Havas LuxHub we’re investing in such guidance but also in defining how luxury marketers should be using data to be more relevant, more targeted, more creative or even to discover new streams of revenue.

Of course, there is no singular Holy Grail solution and different clients have very different needs, even in the premium lifestyle category.

For some the solution might be to invest more in geographical data versus GDPR-restricted data to carve out highly qualified audiences based on their footpaths.

For others, it might be working with niche publishing partners to tap into unique audiences and creative talent. Alternatively, the solution might be to create more content and share it in highly contextual environments to seduce audiences at the perfect moment.

Long story short: Make clients’ lives easier, bring new knowledge and opportunities to the table, and provide on-point data strategies.

What advice would you give luxury marketers for their campaigns and marketing outreach as consumer behavior and response to messaging evolves?

In practice, yes, consumer behavior is certainly evolving, but practice is defined by mediums and tools.

The vehicles to research or discover brands have had a complete overhaul, but emotionally, consumer behavior is still driven by strong, poignant, beautiful and inspiring ideas.

Consumer expectations of convenience and simplicity have increased because of technology, but brands still need to be liked, or better yet, loved.

So the conundrum for luxury marketers becomes, how do you do it all? How can you cater to the evolving consumer journey and add value to every pit stop platform? How can you then also over-deliver in customer service? All the while making people fall in love with the brand?

While some brands have adopted a customer-first versus brand-first marketing approach over the past few years, there needs to be a balance between brand, performance and customer.

No matter how big or small the budget, these three pillars need to be covered.

Organic and social can amplify the brand and customer, while content and editorial can bolster performance.

It’s an intricate web of mediums, but sharing ambitions for all three buckets can help agency partners find more efficient solutions with media and cost-saving synergies.

The Yoox Net-A-Porter group is just fantastic at all three: ridiculously strong brand, stimulating content, customer service leaders and razor-sharp performance.

To conclude: the three key ingredients of brand, performance and customer need equal attention and should be allowed to riff off each other, creating bigger more memorable bangs.

Livia Stefanini, head of Havas LuxHub UK

Full Article: Luxury in 2018: Special Outlook Edition