Post Coronavirus, Luxury Brands Must Focus on Culture, Not Products

PARIS — Patrizio Miceli, head of creative agency Al Dente and its sister food operation, Al Dente Salsa, is an old hand at crisis communication. During the 2008 financial crisis, he launched Aldentelacrise, a blog for people to vent about the global economic meltdown. Times have changed. With social networks now allowing people across the globe to talk to each other directly, Miceli is focusing on evolving the communication strategies of his luxury clients, which include Louis Vuitton, Boucheron and Emilio Pucci. Founded 16 years ago, his agency employs 25 people and has its own film production arm as well as two photo studios. Even before the coronavirus pandemic hit, Al Dente was looking beyond social media to other digital platforms, including Netflix and Spotify, devising campaigns that extend farther than product into cultural content. With many luxury brands now busy producing entertainment for their confined audiences, ranging from fitness classes to sexual wellness podcasts, that trend will only gather steam, he predicted. “There’s an extraordinary opportunity for brands to explore more broadly their aura beyond products,” Miceli said. He’s setting the example, cooking his favorite pasta recipes — made with Al Dente ingredients, naturally — non his Instagram Stories. Miceli spoke to WWD

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