February 25, 2013
Gucci, Brian Atwood, Donna Karan, Giorgio Armani, Tom Ford and other luxury advertisers are letting readers of the March issue of Condé Nast’s Vanity Fair access additional mobile content through the publication’s iPhone and Android application.
Consumers must first download the free VF Extra! mobile app that is powered by mobile image-recognition technology Aurasma. When readers hold their mobile device over certain ads and editorial pages in the Hollywood issue, video and image content appears on the screen.
“The Vanity Fair Extra! app promotes exclusive digital content including videos, slide shows and more,” said Jeff Gunderman, senior vice president and general manager at Eye, New York.
“Consumer entertainment and bringing a print ad to life with sight, sound and motion is a great start, but for consumers to want to continue to engage there will need to be more value in the form of fashion tips, discounts or offers and special access to events or experiences,” he said.
Mr. Gunderman is not affiliated with Vanity Fair, but agreed to comment as an industry expert.
Vanity Fair could not comment directly on this matter.
Reading between the lines
Advertisers that took advantage of the mobile connectivity of Vanity Fair’s March issue include Barneys New York, Belstaff, Bloomingdale’s, Brian Atwood, Carolina Herrera, Christian Dior, Donna Karan, Ermenegildo Zegna, Fendi, Armani, Gucci, Jimmy Choo, John Varvatos, Michael Kors, Mulberry, Neiman Marcus, Reed Krakoff, Richard Mille, Tod’s, Tom Ford, Valentino, Vera Wang and Versace.
Content that corresponds to the participating ads appears on readers’ mobile device immediately through the VF Extra! app.
Gucci, Donna Karan and Fendi, for example, each linked to a video of their spring/summer campaign that showed the models from their two-page front-of-book ad placements.
Neiman Marcus’ ad prompted a behind-the-scenes video of the photo shoot for the latest Art of Fashion campaign. The print ad takes up nine pages in the magazine.
Bloomingdale’s video content showcased its collaboration with Alexis Bittar through an interview with the jeweler.
Also, Zegna showed its spring/summer 2013 runway show.
Richard Mille’s ad revealed a slideshow of its timepieces while Valentino’s ad showed additional images from the campaign.
Other ads linked readers to the brand’s Web site or Facebook page.
Most of the content was designed to view on mobile devices, but some marketers should pay special attention to only link to optimized content in future print-to-mobile efforts.
Readers could access additional video content from certain pages of the Hollywood portfolio as well.
Vanity Fair looked to offer readers a natural extension of the content, per the publication.
March is also a key advertising month, so the magazine helped readers engage further with the ads as well as the editorial.
The annual Hollywood issue of Vanity Fair is loaded with ads in both front of book and the standard editorial features.
The uninterrupted feature to which the magazine is dedicated is “Bruce Weber’s Adventures in Hollywood.”
Cover stars Ben Affleck, Emma Stone and Bradley Cooper in addition to an abundance of other Hollywood names are featured in a photography spread by the American fashion photographer.
The images are supplemented with a story by Bob Colacello on Vanity Fair’s 2013 Hollywood Portfolio.
Meanwhile, luxury advertisers in the issue seem to comprise a mini look book of spring/summer collections before the editorial of the magazine begins.
Brands such as Chanel, Versace and Barneys New York went beyond two-page spreads to push the breadth of their spring collections to the affluent readership of Vanity Fair (see story).
Advertisers that offered mobile content certainly enhanced their static ads, but there is still a inevitable barrier between print and mobile.
“Mobile is a fantastic complement to print content or a print ad because it enables the magazine and its advertisers to extend and enhance the experience,” Mr. Gunderman said.
“The experience, however, has to be worth the effort especially if the initiative requires the download of an app,” he said. “There are a lot of steps to get the experience when a special app is involved.
“Content is key to making sure the experience moves past the initial wow and rewards continued use.”
Tricia Carr, editorial assistant on Luxury Daily, New York