Tuesday, December 13

Valentino: Jaw Dropping Perfection

It's not that often that I see something in the marketing world that literally makes my jaw drop.  Don't get me wrong, I appreciate good work and acknowledge it all the time.  It's just that it's a rare moment when any of it takes my breath away.

But it happened on Friday.  A colleague at the agency sent me a link to the new Valentino Garavani Virtual Museum.

You need to know that I am a gushing fan of the 2008 documentary on his life (and retirement) "Valentino:  The Last Emperor."  I've seen it so many times I can't even count anymore.  Not because I'm a huge fashionista or a huge fan of Valentino for that matter, it's just this man's creative vision, passion, and attention to detail is so inspiring to me.

So imagine my delight when I downloaded the virtual museum onto my desktop.  You open the door and there stands a model is a red dress in a very Louvre-like red box.  It is honestly sheer perfection.  The museum chronicles his classic designs through photography and video in various rooms that you navigate with your mouse.  He tells of his design adventures as well as life with his longtime partner Giancarlo.

The virtual museum was launched at MOMA by Anne Hathaway, a fitting scene and spokesperson.  Now his legacy, as if it really needed it more, is now cemented in time.

But this launched a lot more than just one man's archives.  I believe that this launch represents a new wave in "brand" engagement and the digital experience.  It's a new way of presenting a brand by bringing to life its heritage and its many facets.  The production value is outstanding, some could even say ground breaking.  The content is fascinating, and in fact there is literally hours of navigation left for me to explore.  One sitting isn't nearly enough.

We have not seen the last of the virtual museum.  Mr. Valentino has launched a new way of brand presentation that I think we will see replicated over and over again.  Much like his fashion designs.

A fitting tribute to a legendary brand.  Marketing perfection ... Bravo!  What's your experience?  Jim.

Jim Joseph
President of Lippe Taylor
Author of The Experience Effect
Professor at NYU

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