Professor Scott Galloway's NYU-based think tank, LuxuryLab released fascinating findings in their third annual "Digital IG" report this week. The report assessed the digital competence of 49 global fashion and leather goods firms, to a small number of media outlets.
Fashion brands have put their creative energies into their digital marketing and have come up the most impressive and effective digital marketing campaigns to date. By utilising social media tools like Foursquare, Tumblr and Instagram to create revenue generating campaigns, these brands are staying in touch with their clients and keeping well within the latest technological marketing developments. Galloway says, "Some programs could best be described as bleeding edge," of the study, referring to Ralph Lauren's experimentation with '4D' projection mapping technology.
As successful as the brands who have adopted digital marketing as a serious and integral part of their system are, many top luxury labels are still treating this new media as a novelty that can only really be exploited on a surface level for images and basic PR.
"Brands are seeking the halo of innovation that comes from inspired online programming," says the study. "However, most fashion brands still approach digital as a series of pet projects rather than presenting a coherent multi-platform strategy."
Burberry claimed first place in the rankings, and most interesting was the poor performance of Hermès and Prada who have not integrated digital media into their strategy, thus bring them down from "Gifted" in 2009 to "Challenged" in 2011. Prada still doesn't maintain any official presence on social media, including Facebook, where a "rogue page" maintained by a Prada brand loyalist has attracted more than 800,000 fans. The potential is there and yet still these brands cannot seem to get a handle on it. Food for thought for all brands alike in the coming financial year.