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In the early days of social media luxury brands attracted huge followings simply because people liked to be associated with aspirational companies.
I naively thought that those days had passed, but it would appear that luxury fashion brands are still a big draw on social.
It could be that the likes of Chanel and Dior have outstanding content and are excellent at engaging with their fans, but I thought it would be interesting to see if they’re getting by on reputation alone.
According to data from Socialbakers, luxury brands account for four of the top six most-popular fashion labels on YouTube.
Victoria’s Secret is far and away the most popular (453,000 subscribers), followed by Chanel (250,000), Dior (124,000), Quiksilver (117,000), Burberry (110,000) and Louis Vuitton (74,000).
Here’s a look at what these four high-end fashion labels are getting right on YouTube. Or for more on this topic, read our posts looking at Burberry's social strategy and examining five great luxury ecommerce sites.
Chanel has a neat YouTube hub page that divides its content according to various product categories, such as fashion or fragrance.
Clicking through one of these takes you to a tiled layout that achieves a clean, simple design by stripping out anything other than the video titles.
The videos are displayed in a customised player that also uses a minimal design, so all relevant information and comments appear in plain black and white.
Chanel uploads new videos every few days, though there doesn’t appear to be a regular publishing date as such (e.g. a new video every Monday).
Instead much of the content is taken from its events, fashion shows or new TV ads. There are also regular makeup tutorials demonstrating how to achieve a particular look.
Overall there’s a decent variety of content, with a strong focus on big budget, stylish product ads and celebrities.
Chanel’s TV ads prove to be its most popular videos, with one commercial featuring Marilyn Monroe attracting almost 13m views while this ad featuring Brad Pitt’s nonsensical ramblings has more than 8m.
Christian Dior’s hub page is more basic than Chanel’s. It hasn’t gone for a fully customised, sleek design, and instead has a hero video followed by lists of its latest videos and product categories.
It certainly lacks the visual impact of Chanel’s page, but then how many people land on the hub page anyway? Plus it’s quite useful to have a list of the most recent videos.
Dior uploads new content every few days, ensuring that its followers always have something new to look at.
This includes a good variety of clips, such as TV ads, fashion shows, celebrity interviews, and tutorials.
And as one would expect, the flashy adverts prove to be Dior’s most popular content. For example, this ‘uncensored official director’s cut’ of an ad featuring teen favourite Robert Pattinson has more than 20m views.
Burberry has an excellent social strategy in which video plays a central role. The brand’s obsession with its British heritage means that it has a strong association with the country’s music scene, including a series of exclusive acoustic sets from relatively unknown artists.
This type of content is obviously better suited to video so YouTube is an important channel for Burberry.
Musicians are also a central part of Burberry’s fashion shows, with the likes of George Ezra and Paloma Faith performing as the models strut their stuff.
That said, Burberry doesn’t appear to upload content as frequently as its rivals and occasionally goes several weeks with posting any new videos.
It also hasn’t created a hub page and instead relies on a standard YouTube homepage to show off its content.
As with Burberry, Louis Vuitton hasn’t opted to create a hub page and uses a standard YouTube homepage.
After the list of latest posts the videos are divided out by categories such as ‘Muses’ (apparently Giselle will sell her soul to anyone) and ‘News’.
That fails to showcase what is a good mix of videos that includes some interesting travel clips among the usual fashion shows and adverts.
But while the video content is of an excellent standard, Louis Vuitton only uploads a handful of posts each month.
This could be why it has far fewer subscribers than its rival brands.
Finally, Louis Vuitton’s most popular video is its advert from last year that featured David Bowie. The clip currently has almost 34m views, naturally.
Far from resting on their laurels, these luxury brands are making an effort to maintain up-to-date and interesting YouTube pages.
Chanel and Dior upload content most frequently and have created customised pages, which likely contributes to their popularity.
Louis Vuitton’s comparatively low number of subscribers is undoubtedly impacted by the fact that it only uploads one or two videos per month, meaning it offers a poorer variety and less reason to subscribe.