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Bergdorf targets affluent trailblazers with Google+ addition

December 12, 2011


Well-known for its social media presence, New York-based department store Bergdorf Goodman is upping the ante by adding Google+ to its repertoire for exclusive holiday marketing sneak-peaks and content.

Bergdorf Goodman is one of the few luxury marketers on the channel, leaving it wide open for the retailer to connect one-on-one with tech-savvy affluent consumers. British retailer Burberry pioneered this effort soon after Google announced that the platform was open for businesses.

“As always, we customize our social content to the platform on which it is published, and our Google+ page allows us to take that one step further with social circles customized to our unique location on Fifth Avenue and 58th Street,” said Cannon Hodge, manager of social media for Bergdorf Goodman, New York. “Following the holidays, our Google+ page will be more editorial while our Facebook page will shift to a lighter, more playful tone.

“The Bergdorf Goodman Google+ page will a platform where readers can easily access editorial content shared on 5th/58th, as well as announcements concerning new arrivals, trend stories and more.”

Google plus one
Bergdorf Goodman is currently using Google+ the way that it is using its other social media outlets – for holiday inspiration.

Additionally, Google+ users that follow Bergdorf can see exclusive holiday content including its holiday windows, ornaments and the BG Unleashed videos.

Consumers can choose to follow the men’s or women’s store pages.

Using bright-colored images and engaging content, Bergdorf is drawing traffic to its blog 5th/58th and aiming to bring consumers in-store for holiday-themed events.

For example, Bergdorf featured gloves on its page with multiple high-resolution images. Furthermore, it provided a link to its blog for a list of other holiday gift ideas.

Bergdorf also uses the channel to get consumers in-store.

For example, there was a trunk show last week for watchmaker Dedgumo held in the store. Bergdorf Goodman alerted consumers who have the retailer in their Google+ circles about the event and hinted that a watch such as this would be a perfect present for a male.

Additionally, the retailer posted pictures of its famed holiday windows that could possibly entice consumers to get to the store and see them in-person.

Bergdorf is seamlessly transferring the branded experience into Google+ by incorporating its personality through well-known tactics.

The retailer often interviews designers, celebrities and other individuals by asking them “Five Questions.” To celebrate the holiday experience, Bergdorf posted a video of a five questions interview with Santa Claus as the interviewee.

Five questions with Santa

“The draw to Google + is the newness of it,” said Cindy Hale, president of OTW Boston Communications, Boston. “It has more functionality for segmenting than Facebook currently has, however, it has not caught on as quickly as I believe Google thought that it might.

“For clients that want to remain ahead of the marketing curve and first to adopt new technology, getting your corporate page on Google + is one way to demonstrate new marketing trend leadership,” she said.

“Of course the real trick is understanding what the strategy is for Google + in relation to your company and how you can make the most of the technology.”

A plus
Unlike Facebook, Google+ has facets that are unique to the platform. However, Bergdorf does not seem to be taking advantage of them.

For example, Burberry uses animated GIF images that look as if it is snowing where Bergdorf’s pictures are static (see story).

Additionally, Burberry also allows consumers to click through different profile pictures while Bergdorf only has one.

There is also a great potential for personal interaction while on Google+.

“Google+ is a place for people to connect,” said Josh Harcus, director of Business Development for SayItSocial, Wilmington, NC. “With Google+'s tools like ‘Hangouts,’ people can meet face-to-face from anywhere in the world.

“Companies can host focus groups online, talk with their customers and add a human component back to the corporate world,” he said.

Final Take

Rachel Lamb, associate reporter on Luxury Daily, New York