Luxury brands have been notoriously late to the table when it comes to adapting social media — but Rolex, perhaps unsurprisingly, is right on time. The Swiss watchmakers, who relocated from London to Geneva in 1919, were recently ranked at #57 on Forbes’ list of the most powerful global brands, and that’s not surprising either: a Rolex is a potent power symbol, an object of beauty, and a feat of craftsmanship.
All content marketers and social media professionals could stand to learn from the high level and consistency of Rolex’s branding. It’s not often that social media channels feel like a natural, smooth extension of overall marketing efforts, but with Rolex they do. This consistency has paid off for the watch makers, acquiring over 3.6M Facebook followers (despite being strangely silent on Twitter and Instagram).
Here are our favorite takeaways from an analysis of Rolex’s social feeds:
1. Align Your Marketing With Cultural Events That Complement Your Brand
This YouTube video on Wimbledon shows how a smart brand — luxury or not — behaves in a way that’s guided by a holistic approach to content marketing that aligns with overall efforts. Everything from the tennis celebrities to the jaunty piano and black and white film breathes the type of class and sophistication that makes the brand and the tournament such a natural pairing.
2. Match the Aesthetic and Quality of Your Visuals With Your Brand
If you’re trying to sell a $50,000 watch, your audience is going to expect your production values to be high in terms of the type of visual content you give them. Rolex presents crystal-clear social images that you want to frame.
3. Choose Your Partners Carefully
In 2012 Rolex teamed up with “Titanic” director and explorer James Cameron. This was not their first deep sea adventure: the watch retailer also outfitted Jacques Piccard for a deep sea dive in 1960. Cameron reached a new record for visiting the deepest depths of the ocean, but Rolex’s latest technology was also on display and along for the ride. This collaboration gave Rolex a great media partner in National Geographic and associated their brand with adventure, discovery, and fearlessness.
4. Don’t Be Afraid To Expect More From Your Audience
Many social brands are happy to function under the assumption that there’s no such thing as bad press. The result can be social feeds that are a breeding ground for dissatisfied customer complaints and belligerent commentators of all kinds. For Rolex, it makes sense from a branding perspective to make the kind request that community members keep it classy, and likely endears the brand to its target audience even more.
5. Keep Your Copy Tidy
Even brands that have clear voice and style guidelines can find themselves a little out of control on Pinterest, what with all the hashtags and links and content from other sources. Rolex stays above the noise, presenting content that feels effortlessly put together. From boards with titles like “Rolex Festive Selection” to individual posts that are written with care (“Mother-of-pearl is a unique material whose mere name evokes purity and refinement.”), Rolex’s copy is top shelf.
Rolex’s social channels are remarkable for their exquisite visuals and language, and their adherence to the identity of one of the world’s most valuable brands. This is the kind of content marketing that embraces social while remaining just elite enough to come off as truly luxurious in the process.
Lauren Mangiaforte is a NewsCred Contributor.
Originally published on Jul 5, 2014 10:19 AM