Mercedes-Benz expands its fashion initiatives by producing episodes for an online series that features different creative minds.
The first film of the “Fashion Creatives” series (above) appeared on YouTube on the Mercedes-Benz TV channel in February, and the second film was released this week (below). By creating a continual series featuring different individuals outside the automobile world, Mercedes is creating parallels across industries while seeking the returned interest of viewers.
“Are we finally coming to the age of well-produced, entertaining web series, with clever storytelling and great acting?” said David Benattar, CEO of Hyperbolic, a New York-based creative agency. “Between entertainment and marketing, web series have until now gotten mixed results. We can only applaud Mercedes work. The upside will be multiple, from gaining creds to building brand perception in a new consumer group.”
Mr. Benattar is not affiliated with Mercedes-Benz, but agreed to comment as an industry expert.
Mercedes-Benz was unable to comment by press deadline.
Consumers of both fashion and cars are similar to one another: they are looking to purchase a product that can define their personalities. Mercedes looks to link these worlds through the overlaps of design and elegance.
In the first episode of Fashion Creatives, fashion blogger Leandra Medine takes the viewer on a tour of New York and provides insight into her life.
The second episode alters the style of the episodes with an abstract tale of Marco Lepew preparing for a speech at The New York Times Interactive Luxury Conference.
Mr. Lepew is stressing out about his speech about modern luxury and has a series of strange, nightmare-like events. He runs into an old high school friend who works in fashion, but cannot help him. A marching band wakes him up in his hotel room and will not stop playing music. He imagines himself escaping to the beach and then finally it is time to leave for the conference.
He is picked up in a Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG and his driver happens to be Johannes Torpe, Bang & Olufsen’s creative director. Mr. Lepew is mumbling his speech when Mr. Torpe interrupts to criticize what he has prepared.
Mr. Lepew asks his driver what he would know about modern luxury to which Mr. Torpe responds, “quite a lot actually, quite a lot” as the doors close and the vehicle takes off for the conference.
“[Timing the video near The New York Times International Luxury Conference] a clever hook,” Mr. Benattar said. “Every high end car brand has been mining global conferences, shows and events. It’s the classic tale about reaching the influencers, and engaging them into the brand on multiple levels. Mercedes is doing it well.”
The film was directed by Bo Mirosseni. Each episode receives a dedicated page on the Mercedes-Benz Web site with more information and images about the film.
Mercedes-Benz has been integrating itself into the fashion world in several aspects beyond its sponsored fashion weeks.
For instance, Mercedes-Benz highlighted its ties to fashion with an eerie campaign video for spring/summer 2015.
The three-minute film showed actress Tilda Swinton driving in the brand’s S Class coupe, burying objects at each secluded spot she finds. Creating a narrative that draws consumers in makes it more likely that the viewer will keep watching until the end of a social video (see story).
Mercedes-Benz also experimented with social media platform EyeEm for a new photo-sharing campaign.
The campaign highlighted Mercedes-Benz’s dedication to elegance within their vehicles and speaks to the elegance that can be found everywhere and in everything. The tagging in EyeEm and the social media sharing beyond the application will likely spread this campaign across Mercedes-Benz’s consumer base.
Mercedes’ timing for the series separated the first and second episodes by ten months. The concept of a series creates a space for the brand to engage consumers on a continual basis.
“Rarity means quality,” mr. Benattar said. “And 10 months is not long when you think about the movie industry sequels rhythm.
“It allows to develop a long term culture that will affect perception and build anticipation,” he said.
LUXURY believes it is a step in the right direction to meet consumers cleverly on the new playing field, as “entertainment” value continues to be the singlemost important driver of consumer-focused media and Branding metrics in the Digital Age.