British automaker Rolls-Royce Motor Cars is repositioning itself for consumers with a new Web site.
The new site is designed with mobile in mind, with a smooth flow of images and bold links adorning the homepage. The redesign is a part of Rolls-Royce’s ongoing effort to become more visible in the digital space and to efficiently reach its target market.
This is definitely a part of the evolution of our communication strategies,” said Gerry Spahn, head of communications, Rolls-Royce Motor Cars North America. “You can see that we are going to continue this trend.
“The bottom line is that we don’t market in the mass-market, traditional way; we don’t advertise and we don’t do big sponsorships,” he said. “We are very very targeted in everything we do because we are a very exclusive brand.”
The redesign follows on the heels of the digital unveiling of the brand’s latest model, the Dawn (see story). Rolls-Royce’s Dawn was taken directly to consumers this September through an interactive livestream in September in which viewers could pose questions directly to the automaker’s CEO Torsten Müller-Ötvös.
According to Rolls-Royce, the digital reveal trended at number one on Google throughout the day.
“The digital Dawn reveal was a tremendous success,” said Mr. Spahn. “We had more than 4,000 viewers from press and had an incredible response from our dealers, from our owners and from our prospects.”
As for the site, mobile optimization indicates an awareness of the growth of on-the-go researching and shopping, particularly among young consumers, and will help make the brand more visible. By the same token, Rolls-Royce has become more active on social media, particularly Instagram, as it offers a way to reach consumers on a favorable new platform.
“It’s a fact of life that digital today doesn’t mean sitting at our computers,” Mr. Spahn said. “Especially for our audience, it means your smart phone or your tablet, so everything we do needs to be formatted because the the presentation of the brand is paramount.
“We are a pinnacle brand with a beautiful product, so we need to make sure it doesn’t just look wonderful on your 24-inch desktop, but on your Samsung or your iPhone or whatever your smartphone may be,” he said. “The fact that we are redesigning for mobile isn’t revolutionary, but it’s a non-negotiable point.
“We have to do this and we are committed to doing this right.”
For a brand as exclusive and devoid of entry-level products as Rolls-Royce, digital offers a way of reaching prospects far more efficiently without needing to dip into mass-market advertising. Instead, social media, editorial content and videos can convey the brand identity more properly and more efficiently.
Proper mobile experiences are by now a necessary part of good service.
As mobile and multichannel buying experiences become more prevalent, responsive Web design is the key to maximizing efficiency, according to a panel at Luxury Interactive 2015 on Oct. 14 in New York.
Buyers have been moving amongst desktop, mobile phones and tablets through the duration of research and purchase for years now and the trend is only growing, so ecommerce sites must be optimized for functionality across all these platforms. This means that brands must prioritize building a functional Web site on mobile, tablet, and desktop over everything else, even branding, and execute their ideas (see story).
Although Rolls-Royce is catching up to the playing field with its new Web site, it has shown recently its tendency to be an innovator.
Back in August, the British automaker took its latest cue from the music industry with the final addition to the trio of Bespoke Collections.
“Wraith – Inspired by Music” highlights Rolls-Royce’s longstanding connection with prominent musicians in addition to the superb quality of the car’s sound system. Joining “Wraith – Inspired by Film” and “Wraith – Inspired by Fashion,” this new model rounds out Rolls-Royce’s offerings and helps the brand appeal to a wider audience (see story).
For Rolls-Royce, mobile responsiveness is one and the same with cultivating brand identity.
“It ties back to the fact that you don’t see print ads or TV commercials for Rolls-Royce Motor Cars,” Mr. Spahn said. “We communicate in a very emotional way.
“Part of our brand is an emotional attachment, and mot draw for our prospects and it’s important to communicate that,” he said. “Digital communications are a great way to do that because we have more flex in time when doing videos, we can be more creative.
“For example, with the Dawn it was a very emotional, or very sensual, video. You have the ability to do that with digital media. It offers us a chance to really communicate the brand properly. We are not an auto brand, we’re very much an emotional luxury brand.”