It is not just a question of being present on the Internet through having a website, or of developing the prettiest website or of providing the richest content. It is about creating an exceptional online experience for every person visiting and revisiting the website. It is about appealing to the senses and arousing a profound desire to be associates with the brand through enveloping every website visitor in an immersive environment that makes up the brand’s universe online. It is about keeping a focus on ensuring the best possible web experience and perfecting this. This rich experience will eventually lead to sales and customers’ preference and loyalty.
What rules today?What rules online is the experience that a brand is able to provide on its own website and on other’s websites and via its presence in cyberspace (think Social Web). These factors affect the brand’s equity both online and offline as consumers transfer their collective experiences from the Internet to their “real life” expectations and vice versa.
What are customers looking for?Customers are looking for an experience. An exceptional experience that will appeal to their senses, enhance their mood, recognize their presence, engage their minds, and capture their imagination. Simply just bow their mind away! Just like in the real world. –and creating an exceptional experience is supposed to be a core ingredient in the brand mix, both offline and online..
What ingredients are needed in the online experience?Developing a (luxury) brand website requires a deep understanding of multi-faceted elements and not only web applications. This includes grasping the dynamics of the world of (luxury) brands: having a strong aesthetic appreciation, understanding the brand’s DNA, the corporate goals, the online clients, the offline audience, the competitors, the Internet environment, and the brand’s core e-business strategy including applications, systems and tools.
All these make luxury online multi-dimensional and the task of creating a luxury brand’s website one that requires first to be addressed on a strategic level.
e-business strategy is not only about e-marketing or e-commerce, but also involves an integration of multiple “e” elements including:e-experiencee-brandinge-communicatione-consumer analysise-commercee-CRMe-logisticse-merchandisinge-marketinge-connectione-customisatione-communitye-collaboration-and website design as well as the all important social media
So why is a web agency not enough?Web agencies and interactive media companies are smart, skilled and competent in their area: website creation. They do not, and should not encompass the entire strategic overview as described above.
The problem is that many brands think that only going to a web agency is enough when they go online, which results in ending up with similar websites to everyone else because they will all feature the same technological applications and design style. But though they look alike they have nothing to do with each other’s brand identity, core essence and DNA – but everything to do with the web agency that developed it.
So where will you start your online strategy?
Inspired by Luxury Online by Uche Okonkwo