Posts Tagged ‘Microsite’

American Airlines – Putting you first, in First?

This lovely TV spot for travelling First Class on American Airlines, the latest incarnation of a campaign featuring Kevin Spacey, emphasises individuality above all else. Great iAds have been appearing for this recently in iPad apps for The Economist and The Financial Times. It’s disappointing then, upon arriving at the AA site, to be greeted with a data-heavy template that seems like it’s stuck in 2003, and the only mention of the campaign – ‘The Individual’, takes you to an unsatisfying pop-up microsite. This microsite URL is ‘The Individual Flyer’. Why not call the whole campaign that, as typing in ‘The Individual’ reveals no immediate organic or paid results for AA. What is worse, when you Google ‘The Individual Flyer’, the first hit on Google is for the mobile site. Similar in its failure to equate luxury with excellence in all fields is the newly launched – and undeniably beautiful – Four Seasons website, which, at a gigantic cost of $18m, attracted a withering review from eConsultancy.

“I want [a product] that treats me like me, whoever I happen to be”, Spacey intones. It’s no recent phenomenon that brands are trying to tailor their offering to every consumers’ whim, but what this ad hints at is that economies of scale just won’t work for luxury products and experiences. Unfortunately the digital agency who worked on the AA site have economised, and the site itself, much like Zeitgeist on a long-haul flight, is in need of an upgrade.

Window shopping at Chanel

Great, recent activation and eCRM examples from the esteemed fashion house.

On Friday, Zeitgeist returned (mentally) from lunch to find a message from Chanel in their inbox. The message directs the user to a microsite of sorts, Window World. The name and idea plays on the surreal notion of the models as mere mannequins (usually of course the reverse is the case, a crude verisimilitude that shoppers seem to take in their stride) and a section of the site takes the user through what feels like a labyrinthine party, filled with mannequins as models and models as mannequins. Other than aesthetic discombobulation, there is signposted a pdf download with product information for every item featured including the item code, but naturally not mentioning anything as vulgar as prices. Complementing this is a video shot by the house’s creative director – Karl Lagerfeld, whom Zeitgeist saw speak at the end of last year – emphasising the eeriness of the concept. Clicking on the video will take you to the YouTube page, where there is ample evidence – in the form of myriad comments – of dissatisfaction with the video, and what it says of the fashion industry by proxy. Fortunately for Chanel, most of those on YouTube are not the brand’s target audience.

Indeed, to elaborate, CNN recently reported that 6% of shoppers drive 70% of luxury goods purchases, so its a very targeted niche that brands like Chanel must hit, (and succeed in so doing, time and again). Zeitgeist has reported before on how important it is that brands be seen in the right places; Louis Vuitton luggage in a McDonald’s is a no-no. Chanel have done an excellent job of being seen in the right places; whether it’s hosting surfing parties for Laird Hamilton, or, more recently, opening a pop-up shop in a tony ski resort. The ‘Chalet de Pierre’ is open until April, an ‘ephemeral’ boutique in the heart of beautiful Courchevel. The Chanel website has some select imagery of the store, which is the perfect place to pick up a pair of Chanel skis. Such marketing activity is exciting and well-executed, but curious, given that any time the brand Chanel, and Lagerfeld in particular, speak publicly, they rarely acknowledge any such efforts.