Last season, you may have read my praise of the stunning collection Dolce & Gabbana presented for SS17 during Milan Fashion Week.
The show and its stunning clothing was a collaboration of traditionality and modernity that worked better than tea and biscuits. I truly thought we were about to witness a fashion revolution. Finally! I thought, a brand that has combined tradition and modernity to create the perfect business model for high fashion survival! Someone finally gets it! Oh. Today I realised how horribly wrong I was.
Firstly, I would like to note that most of the clothing was beautiful and the show itself, (looking at the bigger picture), appeared beautiful too. It was held in the iconic Metropol and the models rocked the runway. However, upon taking a closer look at the details, it has to be concluded that Dolce & Gabbana have ran an awful marketing campaign that leaves a rather bitter taste in my mouth.
#1 The Collection:
Is this really a Dolce & Gabbana collection? • Source: @dolcegabbana via Instagram 📸
As stated, most of the clothing was lovely, although it certainly lacked the classic Italian, regal and rich aesthetic that Dolce & Gabbana are recognised for. Parts of it however, represented a tragic nightmare. Denim jackets and Uber-long puffa jackets featuring a collage of meaningless logos become trashier with colour clashes of vivid yellow and pattern combinations not even your most flamboyant friend would wear.
#2 Models Who Aren’t Models
Although pieces of the collection are of an acquire taste, the models stunned. I say models, they weren’t the models we’re used to seeing. I’d refer to them more as ‘influencers’. The internet famous clique which includes vloggers Cameron Dallas (who opened the show) and Marcus Butler were amongst the people who gave a model-worthy walk down the runway for the brand. And good on them, they are what an older-aged crowd would call the definition of millennial success. People who were just your average joe until they started a YouTube/Instagram/Vine/ any other social media account and became a sensation for it. These successful young people had the privilege to walk for Dolce & Gabanna, something most people could only dream of.
Now, I’m not angry about people like this becoming famous. You work hard, it pays off, you succeed, I congratulate you. Whether you’re the CEO of a company or a blogger of some kind, it would be rather hypocritical of me to think otherwise, right?
This trend started a long time ago, when ‘regular people’ (whatever that is), became famous for something such as a reality TV show, for example, the super-famous Kardashians. These television stars became celebrities on and off screen very quickly and were soon reaping opportunities to promise them dream-worthy careers. There seems to be a lot of hate towards Kendall Jenner and the Hadid sisters, Gigi and Bella as people claim they never ‘worked hard’ for their careers. Which no one really is entitled to say as we only see what they want us to see.
The millennial version of the super reality stars is the internet stars. These famous young people are now getting job opportunities that were impossible for virtually any ‘normal’ person 50 years ago. With models also being discovered via Instagram now-a-days, is it a long foreseeable fairwell to the traditional supermodel who was spotted in her home town such as Kate Moss? Do your work opportunities now rely on how many followers you have and how many likes your selfies get?
Famous people don’t anger me, what angers me is how they’re marketed. Which leads me onto my final point…
#3 Marketing Catastrophe #Fail
I clearly liked the jacket, but where can I find a dislike button for the phrase ‘millenial mood’?! • Source: @dolcegabbana via Instagram 📸
You’d think by now we’d be used to seeing companies transitioning to meet the demands of the new consumer. There are plenty of TV adverts that utilise social media with hashtags and everyone is trying to become viral. Most companies pull it off very well and make it a swift change. Dolce & Gabbana however, could not make it any more obvious that they are trying too hard to attract a younger audience: I could barely recognise their signature aesthetic anymore, I could barely recognise the models as they’re instead YouTube stars, and their Instagram captions are, quite frankly, embarrassing.
Upon my first judgement, I thought the show looked okay. I wasn’t stunned and I was slightly disappointed but I didn’t realise that upon analysing all these factors closer, that I would feel saddened to see what appealed me to the iconic brand disappearing in front of my eyes.
These captions are littered with cringe-worthy adjectives to describe the collection such as ‘fresh’, ‘freshness’, ‘cool’, ‘supercool’. Is this a joke? I half expected one of the photos to be captioned ‘swaggy’after reading such nonsense. Let’s play a game, comment below the amount of times the words ‘cool’ and ‘fresh’ were used in the captions from the shows, whoever finds the most wins a supercool prize!
Another phrase that made me laugh in a caption, ‘got the millennial mood?’ What is the millennial mood? Am I a mood? Is my life suddenly an aesthetic? I question this as I drink a cup of tea in my parent’s home because I can’t afford my own whilst I take hundreds of selfies of myself so I can change my Facebook profile picture for the fifth time this week, simultaneously moaning about how I hate working and how the world should revolve around my needs. Eugh. Yes Dolce & Gabbana, I’ve got the millennial mood and I really want to buy from you now as your Instagram marketing is really attracting me!
The biggest pun in all of this, is that this iconic brand is trying to attract a millennial audience/buyer by referring to them in what is generally a dereogative term used by the media and older people who hate this iPhone-obsessed generation to describe those born between the late 80s and early 2000s.
Whilst doing research for this post, I came across an article that opened by describing millennials as, ‘the worst.’ Although, I also came across one written by someone who seemed more intelligent named, Dan Burnett who is just as confused about the definition of a millennial than I am being branded as one.
The point is, if people don’t know how to even describe us as a generation, how do you go about marketing to them? Well, I’m no expert, but referring to millennials as ‘millennials’ and thinking the words ‘cool’ and ‘fresh’ make your business appear ‘cool’ and ‘fresh’ is not what seems to be the best marketing tactic I’ve ever come across. Sometimes trying too hard is worse than trying at all. #DGFa(il)lToWinter18.
Millennial Molicia xo
** Disclaimer: This is just an opinion of mine about the marketing of one of my favourite brands. I do not expect everyone, if anyone, to agree with me. It is merely a point of view about a brand trying to attract a millennial audience, written by a member of the millennial audience, (myself). All articles are a reflection of my opinion and nobody else’s. Thank you for your time.