Recently, we heard that the revered Hermès was launching a podcast series called “The Faubourg of Dreams”: each episode is 10 minutes long and features an interview with someone who worked with the long-established brand. The artistic director, the director of the Faubourg store, as well as a craftsman, the house’s cook and the gardener-in-chief describe the details of their jobs. These podcasts are available on the brand’s website and on various platforms. They are Hermès’s new tool for external and internal communication: a new form of corporate communication. Hermès is not the only company to have seized the interest of podcasts, since Chanel, Lancôme and Guerlain already have theirs, even if they are more focused on their products.
In the luxury world, the proliferation of podcasts is deliberate, as luxury brands really need to convey powerful imagery to exist. They first used advertising campaigns. They were usually somptuous. But only visual. Then came the social media. These weren’t as beautiful because they forced brands into a race for responsiveness and proximity that set them all on the same in-vogue territories (street looks, music, urban culture…) to target Millennials. The result is a dilution of the luxury houses’ own identities.
With their podcasts, they are now geared up to raise above daily social content, slow down the flow of information, open new perspectives, set the standards through the quality of their speeches. Is there a better definition of luxury? They can also settle into the cultural field, so sought-after by young urban scholars who are not necessarily their primary target. This easily contributes to the emergence of a community feeling, very different from the display of XXL logos as a sign of recognition…
People can get tired of social media; podcasts offer uniqueness. Giving voice to those who build the brand, who love the brand, who make the brand live is much stronger than a beautiful story-telling calibrated for the next press release.