Case Study: Ralph Lauren Utilizes Multichannel Advertising Campaign

Ralph Lauren revitalized its image with a bold strategy

Beautiful Model Wearing Expensive Bracelet
Those who can afford luxury goods find multichannel marketing convenient and appealing.

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Luxury labels are finding multichannel marketing campaigns most effective. A multichannel marketing initiative can include mobile digital efforts, with an emphasis on social media networking, print, television, and radio. Ralph Lauren is one U.S. lifestyle label who has used multichannel campaigns to target affluent shoppers. Ralph Lauren’s equestrian roots are very much in evidence in multiple channel platforms. For the holiday season, Ralph Lauren changed their branding to bright colors and lifestyle markers that consumers expected from the brand. The campaign was designed to keep the brand top-of-mind for holiday shoppers.

The Ralph Lauren multichannel holiday campaign was managed by Siegel + Gale of New York. The multichannel campaign strategy was intended to target broadly, extending the reach to as many holiday shoppers as possible with the new, bold brand message. The broad scope of the campaign indicated that it was a tremendous expense for the brand. 

Making the Most of Online Media Websites

One facet of the Ralph Lauren multichannel campaign was advertisements on The New York Times website. The 2012 holiday collection was featured in banner and sidebar advertisements. The effect, particularly because of the highly colored collection featured in the video and image gallery, was indeed attention-getting. The banner ads functioned to serve as a base for click-through to view the entire collection online or to locate a store selling most of the collection.

The Ralph Lauren ads on The New York Times website were interactive and enabled viewers to play a video showing the delivery of Ralph Lauren gift boxes by train. An important feature of the ads was the capacity it gave viewers to browse the Ralph Lauren holiday collection without leaving The New York Times website. Once the special holiday video ended, the viewers were essentially brought back to where they started on the web page.

Consumers Page Through Print Media Ads

Print advertisements were also part of the advertising campaign, with ads placed in the January issue of a number of prominent magazines, including Architectural Digest, Condé Nast, Vogue and the Wall Street Journal. In addition, the holiday collection had a substantive presence on the Ralph Lauren Facebook pages. A number of posts featured large colorful images and the holiday collection featured prominently in the banner image. The Ralph Lauren brand also pushed ads through email blasts that targeted those shoppers in search of quality last-minute gifts. The subject line of the emails read: Find the Perfect Last-Minute Gifts Under $150.

Location Is Everything in Multichannel Marketing

Clearly, brands advertise in outlets and on websites where their consumers from their target market shop. Special attention is given to the selection of sites where the brand wants to be seen and where aspiring consumers are likely to go. Consider the impact when a brand associates with similar brands and websites that attract consumers from their collective target market, which in this case is consumers who purchase luxury items.

Luxury marketers tacked heavily toward multichannel campaigns during the 2012 holiday season. Ralph Lauren was in the company of French jeweler Cartier in the effort to attract consumers of luxury goods. Cartier’s campaign featured a Winter Tale theme that was pushed via email blasts and on print mediums. E-commerce was an important component of the campaigns of luxury brands and was surprisingly central to efforts to attract late shoppers. Cartier featured a Winter Tale video early in the holiday shopping season and sustained the winter theme throughout the multichannel holiday campaign.

The Burberry British brand featured an animated musical social video that was the hub of its holiday campaign. Burberry products added luster to the video that was filmed in its London flagship store with its advanced embedded technology. Burberry created an 80-second greeting card video on a special holiday microsite and on its social media channels. The video depicted a festive evening celebration in the Burberry boutique that is located at 121 Regent Street in London. Naturally, Burberry encouraged its consumers to share the video on social media networking sites.​

Multichannel Marketing Campaigns Easily Target a Wide Swath of Consumers

The strength of multichannel campaigns is clearly in the range of consumers who can be included as a target audience for the entertaining advertisements. Each multichannel platform is utilized in a way that optimizes the brand’s ability to attract new customers and to engage loyal consumers.

Research in ad awareness indicates that print advertisements and television advertisements are important for building brand awareness and can result in brand lift. However, social media networking experiences such as Facebook provide a very different type of brand experience. Consumers today expect that they will be able to comment on the brand and be heard by the company: social media provides that experience and can result in strong consumer-brand engagement when it is well articulated.