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Christmas eCommerce: Keep it merry and stress-free!

Research has shown that almost 56% of British consumers will be spending nearly half of their Christmas shopping online this year. Others have also estimated that 8 out of 10 consumers will be considering online Christmas shopping. It is not surprising that British retailers have been investing a substantial amount of their efforts to embrace this once-in-a-year opportunity since several months before Christmas.

Despite the optimistic figures, some concerns remain amongst the retailers. It is one thing to browse on eCommerce website, but it is quite another thing to click the ‘purchase’ button for the consumers. Approximately 48% of the online shoppers are likely to quit shopping, leaving their shopping carts hanging there, abandoned and eventually forgotten.

So what is demoralising them?

Christmas time not only brings jolly and delightful feelings, but the time also makes people stressed and occupied with planning parties and finishing off their big projects before starting their holidays. And they are less likely to enjoy the complicated and time-consuming eCommerce procedures, forcing them to abandon their shopping baskets before completing the payments. It is the hard-to-follow structure, slow loading website or simply the unexpected delivery cost that make consumers switch to competitors or in-store shopping. Retailers cannot afford to lose these key shoppers whose expected average Christmas expenditure is 375 pounds per person.

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(Picture from Ag Report 365 http://agreport365.com/christmas-shopping-stress-fight/)

Christmas is just around the corner: What can we do at this stage?

Marketing strategy during Christmas encompasses an early preparation. Yet, there are still some actions that can be taken to avoid the ‘lost-consumer’ problem. The most straightforward solution, probably, is to send them the reminder emails. Big retailers such as John Lewis and QuickSilver use ‘Cart Abandonment Email’ to remind their consumers of the unfinished shopping activities. Their emails feature precise messages with images of items and the links that direct consumers back to their shopping carts.

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(Source from http://econsultancy.com/uk/blog/63925-cart-abandonment-emails-how-five-retailers-retarget-lost-customers)

However we also need to look at the root cause. In other others, to tackle the tedious eCommerce shopping experience by adding more fun and creative elements of your company.  For example, use of videos and photos featuring your team dressed in Santa costumes might attract the consumers’ attentions, making the process less monotonous.

Christmas-themed deals or promotions should be renewed and updated every couple of days to encourage your online customers to visit your website regularly. By offering vouchers that can be used in January 2014, it will not only ensure returning customers but also less chance of losing shoppers to the competitors. Similarly offering promotion code on the spot will prevent your consumers from leaving to other websites, looking for better offers. Your online sales will be likely to increase if you improve the cost of delivery. Given that consumers abandon their carts due to unexpected total prices at the final process of online shopping, companies may need to reduce the delivery fees, if not free, on orders that exceed certain amounts. This can provide some incentive for the consumers to spend more and at the same time avoid disappointments.

The most basic way to enhance online conversion rate is to revise the technicality and accessibility of your website (yet, many tend to underestimate this). The speed of website download determines the conversion rate, and therefore the volume of your Christmas sales. Ensure that your eCommerce website operates effectively and speedily for every type of device.

In conclusion…

As mentioned earlier, Christmas marketing strategy requires a long-term planning. This may involve the development of a personalized online shopping website, or incorporation of a range of social media methods to make online shopping more fun an interactive. In a busy time like Christmas, consumer attitudes are even more volatile. Retailers must make sure their eCommerce sites are precise, easy-to-follow, and speedy to avoid the ‘missing payment’ or ‘lost consumer’ situations.

3 reasons we are VERY excited this week – Featuring the app that will change EVERYTHING FOREVER!

Now that we have your attention, we would like to say that said app is great, although we really don’t know if it will change everything forever. But yeah, it’s a great app.

So the new iPhone came out, gazillion Apple fans queuing for hours outside the Regent Street store, excitement and confetti everywhere, Samsung ripping off Apple again – see below – and so on and so forth.

samsung-galaxy-s4-gold

But we are excited for other reasons. First and foremost, the app in the title: PicPlayPost. CNET says: ‘Finally, a photo-framing app that stands out. PicPlayPost offers video integration in an otherwise photo-only app-frame landscape, complete with sequential and simultaneous playback along with other unique features.’

Wow. And I mean, WOW! We all know video is something that still doesn’t quite appeal to the average user – unless it’s about cats or it’s something like the latest Masterpiece from Chanel, which cost gazillions to produce, anyway. With this app, things could change for good, as it allows you to feature photos and videos at the same time. See the example below.

A post shared by @thin_red_line on

Now imagine a brand using this thing, for Paris Fashion Week: a video from the runway, a full body picture showing the product and another picture of La Tour Eiffel – or something less obvious, but you get the point.

The second reason why we are as excited as a man who just found a forgotten Picasso under his bed, is that we are going to take care of the social media presence of a huge brand. We can’t say much at the moment…Stay tuned for more, folks!

The third reason? Oh, well, nothing…it’s just that one of our projects has been featured on http://www.webdesignserved.com/. Yep.

webdesignserved

What do you think?

London Web Agency Appnova – keep following us on Twitter @appnova and “like” us on Facebook for useful news and tasteful digressions about geeky stuff.

The End of Everything / Footballers on Instagram, $38,000 designer bags, extreme luxury and tigers in Dubai.

‘You see it’s broke nigga racism

That’s that “Don’t touch anything in the store”

And this rich nigga racism

That’s that “Come in, please buy more”

“What you want, a Bentley? Fur coat? A diamond chain?

All you blacks want all the same things”

Used to only be niggas, now everybody playing

Spending everything on Alexander Wang

New Slaves’

Kanye West / “New Slaves”

 

‘I just talked to Jesus

He said, “What up Yeezus?”

I said, “Shit I’m chilling

Trying to stack these millions”

I know he the most high

But I am a close high

Mi casa, su casa

That’s our cosa nostra

I am a god

I am a god

I am a god’

Kanye West / “I Am a God” (featuring God)

I will almost copy and paste the following article – by Colin McDowell, posted on The Business of Fashion’s website – in its entirety, as it is too bloody good:

‘Following news that a shop assistant in Zurich refused to let Oprah Winfrey examine a $38,000 black bag, Colin McDowell says astronomically priced products are emblematic of exactly what’s wrong with the fashion business.’

‘LONDON, United Kingdom — Historians take pleasure in giving portmanteau names to periods: The Age of Elegance; The Dawn of Civilisation; The Gilded Age. It is interesting to imagine what, in the future, will be the title given to today’s fashion period. Guilt and Greed, perhaps? The Death of Taste? I would suggest it could best be summed up as The Age of Irresponsible Excess.

To illustrate what I mean, take the recent little vignette that played out in Switzerland, starring Oprah Winfrey. In a Zurich shop, the American media icon expressed interest in a $38,000 black bag, displayed in a locked showcase. A shop assistant refused to get it out of its case to let her properly examine it. Oprah (who is estimated to have earned $77 million last year alone) was informed that it was too expensive for her and after a few more requests and refusals, she left. Many will agree with her assumption that she, an African American woman, was a victim of prejudice, and they could well be right. (My note: read again the lyrics to “New Slaves”)

Racial prejudice is intolerable to all civilised people and it is right that it should be rigorously questioned and examined. But what has not been questioned or examined in this particular case is something which should shock and appal all right-minded people. And that is the price asked for the bag. What an affront to society and civilisation it presents. Above all, it is a shocking indictment of the mindless greed of the higher echelons of the fashion industry and the way in which it has corrupted certain areas of society. Astronomically priced products are designed not to shock, but to excite a customer sufficiently to be determined to buy them.

To me this is exactly what has gone wrong with the fashion business. A spat between a designer and a journalist, like the one between Hedi Slimane and Cathy Horyn, is demeaning and embarrassing, but the “Oprah Bag” question is infinitely more important and should outrage us all. Can we really have respect for an industry that sells handbags for $38,000?

Read the rest here: http://bit.ly/14NA5S2

So, while Kanye raps about the excess of contemporary society, the noveau riche disease and the God complex of the wealthy and tasteless, many still worship money and shamelessly show off their possessions, despite a universal grim economic situation.

Have we lost the plot? Yes.

russian

Do you remember the ‘Rich Kids of Instagram’? if you don’t, check the following photos and the Tumblr. It will become a reality TV show, according to Mashable.

rkoi1 rkoi2

Other similar cases include ‘Arab kids of instagram’.

arab2 arab3 arabkidsofinstagram

And Rapperz on Instagram.

rapperz2 rapperz3 rapperzoninstagram

Oh, and don’t forget football players showing off on social media.

Here’s Balotelli’s hand.

balo

And Nuri Şahin’s collection of keys.

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Hopefully, Gen Y will save us all – as Noah Kerner in this article posted by Forbes reckons: ‘My generation dreamed of making millions on Wall Street. Today’s young people dream bigger – building startups that change the world. is going for other stuff opposite direction

Or, if the world will not change, at least the filthy rich could use a bit of class, when bragging about their monies. Look at Snoop Lion’s Instagram shot – a sober, subtle image of what being rich and famous is about: travelling in style, with Louis Vuitton gear, while smoking a spliff. What else do you need?

snoop

Photo sources: Instagram, Vice (http://www.vice.com/en_uk)

What do you think?

London Web Agency Appnova – keep following us on Twitter @appnovaand “like” us on Facebook for useful news and tasteful digressions about geeky stuff.

Filthy Rich Munchies / 5 of the world’s most expensive junk foods, feat. Kebab with gold, and a hot dog with onions caramelized in Dom Perignon.

Yes, life is good when you drive a gold-plated Lamborghini, date three models at the same time, and use Louis Roederer Cristal Champagne jeroboam 2002 instead of Lidl’s anti-dandruff shampoo.
But then again, when you get the munchies, you just wanna go hardcore: burgers, chips, kebab, and the rest of it.

Here’s a selection of junk foods for the filthy rich. Get fat or die trying.

As reported by DesignTAXI, this is the ‘World’s Most Expensive Bacon Sandwich’
‘Priced at US$237, the ‘Bacon Bling Sandwich’ is made from an impressive list of ingredients—seven rashers of rare breed pig bacon, sliced truffles, a free range egg, saffron and edible gold dust.’

bacon

Pizza, bambino? Here you go: the Luis XIII, a Renato Viola Creation, costs $12,000. Why? Because it takes 72 hours to make, it is topped with bufala mozzarella, three types of caviar, lobster from Norway and Cilento, and it is lightly dusted with hand picked grains of pink Australian sea-salt from the Murray River. The cost includes service, anyway, and this pizza can only be made at home. Three Italian chefs will show up at your villa and make it for you in the comfort of your kitchen.

pizza

Jalla! Jalla! Kebab
Made with saffron-infused flat bread, milk-fed lamb from the Pyrenees and edible gold, the “King of Kebabs” also features champagne-infused mint and cucumber yoghurt, and costs £750.
From The Sun: ‘Chef Andy Bates created the kebab to mark the launch of The Great Food Truck Race TV show, celebrating street food.
Andy said: “It took a fair bit of time to source the best possible ingredients to ensure that this kebab was the most exclusive one out there but I loved every minute.”’

kebabmain_1321699a

Hubert Keller’s FleurBurger 5000, named after its price tag, is the most expensive hamburger in the world. Why? According to the WSJ’s food blog, what makes it so pricey is ‘Lots of expensive ingredients. Start with a Kobe beef “patty” (more like a mountain of ground primo cow flesh), then top it with foie gras and black truffles. Oh, and don’t forget the “special sauce,” which is made with – no surprise – more truffles.’ But there is more, as you can read on said blog.

Fleur-Burger-Hubert-Keller2

World’s most expensive hot dog: New York’s 230 Fifth released this $2,300 creation made out of 60-day dry-aged wagyu and topped with Vidalia onions caramelized in Dom Perignon, sauerkraut braised in Cristal, and caviar.’
Read more here: http://tinyurl.com/qjdxmma

hotdog

The most expensive bagel in the world is topped with white truffle (from Alba), cream cheese, and goji berry infused Riesling jelly with golden leaves.
The bagel’s $1,000 price tag (including tax).

bagel

Thirsty? Vintage soda!
To make the whole thing work, wash down your kebab or bagel with a 1958 can of Style Line Ginger Ale (Unopened), selling on the Bay for $349.95

style-line-ginger-ale-unopened--34995

What do you think?
London Web Agency Appnova – keep following us on Twitter @appnova and “like” us on Facebook for useful news and tasteful digressions about geeky stuff.

Instagram Video, Vine, and Other Animals: The Beginning of the Video Era?

“Cinema is the most beautiful fraud in the world.”

Jean-Luc Godard

Although YouTube is definitely one of the most popular things on the Internet, it still looks like the average social media user prefers still images. In fact, the most effective way to get “likes” and “shares” and the rest on Facebook, right now, is by using the good ol’ artwork/image + copy combo.

But now things are going to change for good. If you were stuck in a cabin in Hammerfest, Norway, in the last four days, then you probably don’t know that we now have Instagram Video. Yep. It’s kinda similar to like Vine, which belongs to Twitter, which is Facebook’s worst enemy, nowadays, which means Zuckerberg wants to take over the Internet and get richer then Donald Duck, Donald Trump and Donald Glover put together. Anyway, here’s an article explaining how the Instagram Video vs Vine works.

When it comes to Vine, a few brands/companies are already producing seriously cool things. Wired is one of them.

wiredvine
General Electric, as usual, plays with science and turbines like nobody else.

gevine
Oreo’s videos are sweet, too.

oreovine
A handful of brands already started using Instagram Video, as well. Here’s the omnipresent Burberry.

A glimpse behind the scenes of the #Burberry Prorsum Menswear Spring/Summer 2014 show, #London

A post shared by Burberry (@burberry) on

General Electric, again.

And Michael Kors.

Michael Kors meets @Instagram video. So excited! #InstaKors #congrats

A post shared by Michael Kors (@michaelkors) on

So, what does it all mean, in a nutshell? We don’t know yet. Mashable’s Lance Ulanoff implores ‘Instagram Video: Don’t Make Me Love You’ as he likes Vine but – reluctantly – recognises Instagram Video’s massive potential.
Another article reports that the guys at Vine are well aware of the competitor’s power, therefore “One day before rival Facebook is rumored to announce a Vine competitor, employees of Twitter’s video-sharing service teased several of its new features.” Meanwhile, some analysts warn: ‘Get Ready For TV-Like Ads On Facebook (Eventually) As Video Comes To Instagram.’

The bottom line is, anyway, that things are going to change, once again, and I personally think that video will now become something we have to deal with every day. Finally.

Think about the potentialities of the medium, for brands:

  • Events can be shown and shared through moving image; see fashion shows, gigs, vernissages and the rest.
  • Teasers can be used in order to create suspense for a new product or event coming up.
  • Storytelling is better with video, as the medium is psychologically more engaging and captivating.
  • It’s easier to communicate brand identity and values, with video.

What do you think?
London Web Agency Appnova – keep following us on Twitter @appnova and “like” us on Facebook for useful news and tasteful digressions about geeky stuff.

Burberry Kisses VS Send your Kiss! Caresse by L’Oréal. Stolen Kisses?

Burberry has done something pretty cool, again. When it comes to social media – among other things – the brand is always definitely ahead of the game.

From The Next Web: ‘Kissing online: Google and Burberry let you send a personalized smooch to a loved one.

Kissing someone across the globe has never been more real. With Burberry and Google’s newly-launched sweet little idea to spread some love across the globe in a more personalized way, you get your own kiss imprint to send on to your loved ones (say goodbye to generic images of a kiss!).’

Simply go to Burberry Kisses to send a letter sealed with your kiss. Once there, capture your kiss – or do it on your iPhone, by caressing the screen with your lips, for instance – and some lucky girl/boy will see your love fly away to reach her/him.

Here’s the YouTube video that explains how things work.

But there is a tiny detail. Have a look at the comments to the post on The Next Web, and you will notice that some user posted a link to a very very very similar experiment: Send your Kiss! Caresse by L’Oréal.

Here’s a screenshot.

l'oreal_kiss

A post about it, written a few months ago, by CREAM.

And the video.

What do you think?

London Web Agency Appnova – keep following us on Twitter @appnova and “like” us on Facebook for useful news and tasteful digressions about geeky stuff.

SADvertising / Three sad, bad and/or depressing ads, feat. Timberland, McDonald’s and – yep, again – Chanel and Brad Pitt.

I was trying to find something uplifting and inspirational on the Internet, you know, one of those motivational things like “Hell Yeah It’s Friday!” that make us smile and think that everything is going to be fine because the weekend is here and friends are coming over and beers are going to fly and cats are all over the place, but for some strange reason, Twisted Sister Serendipity brought me to the Wasteland of Depressing Ads.

Here’s a fine selection of ads gone wrong.

I found this on Business Insider Australia: ‘McDonald’s In Australia Just Released A Series Of Really Depressing Ads’

mcdonaldsdepressingad

(image courtesy of Business Insider Australia)

Then this appeared in my Facebook feed, and I felt even more depressed.

timberlandretire

(image courtesy of Ads of the World)

Dulcis in fundo (last but not least, that is) while I was about to publish this post, my eye fell on the last article, featuring Brad Pitt (and his empty eyes) for Chanel, next to a pile of rubbish.

chanel_catford

(image courtesy of the Internet)

Happy weekend.

What do you think?

London Web Agency Appnova – keep following us on Twitter @appnova and “like” us on Facebook for useful news and tasteful digressions about geeky stuff.

Has fashion become a senseless circus? Featuring weird ad campaigns, an extra thin Beyoncé and Karl Lagerfeld sporting a yellow safety vest.

Of course you have to consider new markets, BRIC, Russian taste, Chinese future customers, Brazilian trends, you constantly have to astonish and amaze, you need to go weird and arty and cutting-edge, you have to choose the right testimonial but at the same time you have to surprise your fans / followers / afinicionados / clientele, but, seriously, it looks like fashion brands are losing the plot. Big time.

Remember the what-is-going-on-here? Chanel ad starring a confused, mumbling Brad Pitt?

chanel_catford

What about the Yeti-like pyjamas, courtesy of Chanel, once again?

chanelfur

Who’s Chanel’s controversial creative director, the man behind these bold moves? It’s Karl Lagerfeld! And he’s wearing a safety vest!

karl
Meanwhile, Lady Gaga wears five kilos of sirloin steaks for Vogue.

gaga

The Telegraph reports: ‘Courtney Love joins fellow controversial rocker Marilyn Manson for the latest Saint Laurent campaign shot by creative director Hedi Slimane.’
So, Yves Saint Laurent – the man who said “I am no longer concerned with sensation and innovation, but with the perfection of my style” – meets Marilyn Manson, Honorary Priest of the Church of Satan? Yes, it’s perfectly fine.

Saint-Lauren_Music-Project-thb

Dolce & Gabbana’s new testimonial is Leo Messi. Yep. The female fan base screams FAIL! Look at the comments on their Facebook page.

messigabbana

Talking about social media backfire, apparently Roberto Cavalli is swimming in muddy waters, after the fashion designer published this sketch of Beyoncé, looking nothing like the real thing. Check the Facebook page for the usual stream of insults.

beyioncecavalli

Russia: fashion is getting bigger and bigger, and ads are going weirder and weirder. Look at this masterpiece:

Finally, a smart fashion ad campaign. Oi, wait a sec, that’s a chocolate-flavoured drink ad! GENIUS.
From www.bestadsontv.com: ‘Arla Foods are launching Wing-co., a new chocolate flavoured drink designed for men, with a print campaign devised by CHI & Partners.

The campaign, which launches in press and 6$ from 3rd June, is a parody of over-masculine ‘Pour Homme’ fragrance advertising.

Shot by fashion photographer Matt Irwin, the ads show a rugged model performing exaggerated feats of manliness with nonchalance. He is a man, with added man. Be it balancing a huge tree trunk over one shoulder, carrying a full size live lioness or sitting in plus fours sporting a flamethrower, he remains unflustered.’

LAIT_D-HOMME_WEB3

What do you think?
London Web Agency Appnova – keep following us on Twitter @appnova and “like” us on Facebook for useful news and tasteful digressions about geeky stuff.

What Would F. Scott Fitzgerald Post on Tumblr? The Lost Generation, #menswear, Booze and Other Elements of Style.

So, Baz Luhrmann’s adaptation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s ‘The Great Gatsby’ is here, and suddenly everybody is talking about style, menswear, swag and the good ol’ days in which men used to dress impeccably, drink copiously, and use polished words. The opposite of Jay-Z, basically.

And, considering the huge popularity of #menswear on social media – especially on Tumblr – it’s probably the right time to pay a tribute to a bunch of great artists.

The other day I read this, somewhere, I don’t remember where: ‘Always a natty dresser, Fitzgerald had his Army uniform tailored by Brooks Brothers. He dressed many of his characters in attire by the same clothier.’

And, as you can see from the following pictures, Mr. Fitzgerald was indeed a stylish man.

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FScottFitzgerald

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1f_scott_fitzgerald

The writer was a key member of what has been called “The Lost Generation” by Gertrude Stein. A generation of stylish, decadent, hedonistic, inconsolable and dark-souled artists, such as Ernest Hemingway, T. S. Eliot, John Dos Passos, Waldo Peirce, Isadora Duncan, Abraham Walkowitz, Alan Seeger, and Erich Maria Remarque.

Ernest Hemingway

hemingway1

Abraham Walkowitz

Abraham Walkowitz

Erich Maria Remarque

erich-maria-remarque-1898-1970-german-everett

John Dos Passos

John-Dos-Passos

T. S. Eliot

TS Eliot

They were also into booze, as you can see from this selection of quotes.

‘First you take a drink, then the drink takes a drink, then the drink takes you.’

‘I’ve been drunk for about a week now, and I thought it might sober me up to sit in a library.’

F. Scott Fitzgerald

‘Always do sober what you said you’d do drunk. That will teach you to keep your mouth shut.’

‘I drink to make other people more interesting.’

Ernest Hemingway

‘If I were sufficiently romantic I suppose I’d have killed myself long ago just to make people talk about me. I haven’t even got the conviction to make a successful drunkard.’

John Dos Passos

What do you think?

London Web Agency Appnova – keep following us on Twitter @appnova and “like” us on Facebook for useful news and tasteful digressions about geeky stuff.

Luxury Beauty Brands 2.0 / How to look classy online, feat. “Snooki” Polizzi, L’Occitane en Provence, The Sanctuary and Josie Maran.

I don’t have a TV set. The last time I had one I was at uni. It was 1997. The other day I went to visit a friend; he’s got a TV set, and suddenly I found myself channel surfing like a young Leroy “The Masochist” Smith in Big Wednesday.

After a little while, I sat and wondered:

snooki

It looks like there are way more Snookis, WAGs, Tulisas, Geordie Shorettes, TOWIE-sque beauties out there than Carole Bouquets, Audrey Hepburns and Zooey Deschanels.

Moreover, brands often – even plush ones – when it comes to social media, tend to adapt their image to the latest trend, which means that several times they end up looking like a chav, i.e. a not very classy individual with an expensive Burberry cap.

It’s true, thanks to gangsta rappers and Reality TV stars now luxury brands are much more ‘street’ than before, LOL and YOLO and the rest, but still, a luxury brand should stay true to its roots and perpetuate the purest ideals of beauty, elegance, and excellence (that means Coco Chanel is a good style icon, Nicki Minaj is not).

So, if you really need to give it a twist, use your brain.

Want to depict immortal beauty and allure? Ask Ellen von Unwerth to take care of the photoshoot, just like The Sanctuary did (and yes, you are right, we created their website ;)).

sanctuary

Want to engage your customers and keep them coming back for more? Choose culture, nature, healthy recipes and Vintage Posters of Provence, instead of OMG-scandal-scoop-unseen-footage-blah-blah-bloody-blah.

Look at L’Occitane en Provence on Pinterest, for instance.

occitane

Want to use Instagram in a different way? Stop posting pictures of parties with Rihanna and Drake, and give us some real pictures, like Josie Maran. She’s a mom and a business woman, and found a way to make these traits live together; moreover, her Instagram images show a brand’s human face, and the real deal, i.e. how to look cool and well-groomed even if you have to take care of a wild 1-year-old baby.

josiemaran

What do you think?

London Web Agency Appnova – keep following us on Twitter @appnova and “like” us on Facebook for useful news and tasteful digressions about geeky stuff.