Luxury Brand Image and Social Media Marketing

Introduction

The Use of Social Media in Marketing (Kim & Ko 2010)

  1. Social media has changed how people communicate and share information
  2. The use of social media has increased drastically in the last decade
  3. Companies are now looking at social media as a new approach and platform of reaching their target customers because of the decline of the traditional media such as print
  4. The use of social media is also a common feature in the marketing of luxury products

Aim of the paper

The main aim of the paper is to discuss how the use of social media affects the brand image of luxury products

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Social Media and Luxury Products (Evans 2012)

Luxury products have a unique customer base that exhibits specific characteristics and exceptional set of features such as:

  1. Have sole and renowned characteristics
  2. Luxury goods induce distinctiveness
  3. They take pleasure in a high level of trade name consciousness and discernment of quality
  4. They benefit from high client devotion
  • The use of social media marketing allows brands to reach their customers in masses and in a more personalized manner as compared to other marketing approaches (Hoffman & Fodor 2010).
  • The use of social media marketing is also more affordable, yet perceived to be more effective as compared to traditional advertising methods such as print media (Evans 2012).

The effectiveness of Social Media Marketing in Luxury Brands

The use and efficacy of social media marketing is a subject of considerable research. Various studies have found the following:

  1. Social media marketing allows brands to create interactive content that can be easily passed through the word of mouth (Saravanakumar & SuganthaLakshmi 2012)
  2. Social media marketing is preferable to customers because it is free and that it gives them the opportunity to choose the kind of information desired by consumers (Kim & Ko 2010)
  3. Social media marketing is more effective in luxury brands since it allows them to pass information that promotes the values and products of the brand

Limitations of Social Media Marketing in Luxury Brands (Hoffman & Fodor 2010)

  1. Social media is accessible to billions of people. Thus, advertising on the platforms means that luxury brands can no longer control the reach of their marketing to their intended customers alone
  2. The use of social media markets violates many of the previously used guidelines and characteristics of luxury brand advertising such as quality, exclusivity, and uniqueness
  3. In addition, the creation of content on social media platforms is very easy. Hence, it erodes exclusivity
  4. Social media marketing is accessible to numerous businesses since it creates a level ground for all advertisers
  5. The approaches to social media advertising are changing very fast, hence making its usage and effectiveness highly unpredictable

How to Use Social Media Marketing in Luxury Brands (Truong 2008)

Luxury brands must focus on the process of translating unique brand elements into social media marketing platforms

  1. Luxury brands must define the qualities that define their brand to ensure that such traits are present across all online platforms
  2. Luxury brands should treat the web and social media as an extension of their offline brands since consumers view their online presence as an extension of the brand
  3. Luxury brands must focus on expanding, rather than recreating their in-store experiences on the online platform. Online presence should encourage consumers to visit the online platforms
  4. Luxury brands must create objectives and benchmarks for all online activities to promote their brand awareness and uniqueness

Luxury brands must focus their efforts on the adaptation of business practices to the online business model and approaches of marketing (Saravanakumar & SuganthaLakshmi 2012)

  1. Luxury brands should not force traditional advertising onto online social media platforms
  2. Luxury brands should focus on their ethos, which consequently defines their approaches to online messaging, thus maintaining their uniqueness
  3. Unlike the traditional concepts of advertising, which focused on exclusivity, social media marketing is focused on access to all products. Thus, luxury brands can adapt accordingly
  4. Digital consumers are savvy. They understand the difference between PR and authentic content. Luxury brands should focus on providing authentic information and content
  5. Luxury brands should dedicate their efforts to the creation of content that can expand their brand identity and recognition

The use of social media marketing in luxury brands is highly determined by the ability of the brands to identify and expand their audiences on various social media platforms (Hoffman & Fodor 2010)

  1. Luxury brands should use individual strategies that target a specific consumer base to optimize messages that reach potential consumers
  2. Luxury brands should identify the social media platforms and online spaces that are used or best fit their target consumers, thus focusing on using them for marketing their products
  3. Instead of focusing on all social media platforms, organizations should choose the best platforms while dedicating resources and efforts to ensure that they are the best on the chosen platforms

There is the need to empower consumers on the social media platform to appreciate the power of social media as a platform for passing information on luxury products (Kim & Ko 2010)

  1. Brands should humanize the brand by directly communicating to potential consumers on online platforms
  2. Luxury brands should focus on deepening brand relation with the consumers by being part of the consumers’ online statuses, as well as allowing customers to flaunt the brand to friends (Atwong 2015)
  3. The luxury brands should bring consumers into the brand narrative by allowing consumer-generated content into the marketing platform
  4. Brands should provide content that provides a new perspective and hence more interest by consumers

Lastly, it is important for luxury brands to dedicate efforts to the management of consumer needs and demands on online platforms (Hoffman & Fodor 2010)

  1. They should focus on acknowledging consumers by listening and responding to their recommendations and criticisms
  2. Luxury brands should dedicate more resources to maintaining an online presence
  3. They should release news simultaneously on social media and the press
  4. They should set rules and guidelines for engaging on social media, thus ensuring the quality and authenticity of all the communication on online platforms
  5. They should verbalize efforts that focus on addressing consumer needs and demands generated via online platforms

Conclusion

  1. It has the ability to reach consumers in a more creative and personalized manner, thus better outcomes for luxury brands
  2. Social media marketing is an important platform for advertising and marketing of luxury brands
  3. Luxury brands face various challenges in the usage of social media marketing
  4. To use social media marketing effectively, the luxury brands must ensure that they dedicate efforts to engaging with consumers
  5. Concisely, social media marketing has positive outcomes for luxury brands

References

Atwong, C 2015, ‘A Social Media Practicum: An Action-Learning Approach To Social Media Marketing And Analytics’, Marketing Education Review, vol. 25, no. 1, pp. 27-31.

Evans, D 2012, Social media marketing: An hour a day, John Wiley & Sons, Hoboken, NJ.

Hoffman, D & Fodor, M 2010, ‘Can you measure the ROI of your social media marketing’, MIT Sloan Management Review, vol. 52, no. 1, pp. 41-49.

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Kim, A & Ko, E 2010, ‘Impacts of luxury fashion brand’s social media marketing on customer relationship and purchase intention’, Journal of Global Fashion Marketing, vol. 1, no. 3, pp. 164-171.

Saravanakumar, M & SuganthaLakshmi, T 2012, ‘Social media marketing’, Life Science Journal, vol. 9, no. 4, pp. 4444-4451.

Truong, Y 2008, ‘Status and conspicuousness–are they related? Strategic marketing implications for luxury brands’, Journal of Strategic Marketing, vol. 16, no. 3, pp. 189-203.

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