The Estée Lauder Cos. Inc., Adidas, Lipton, Northwest Airlines, Intel Corp. and CNN are just a few of the companies that have used MyClick Media Limited's marketing technology to reach young people in China. Now MyClick hopes to bring it to the U.S., Europe and Australia.
MyClick can embed an image in any media, including television, and when a consumer snaps a photo of the image with an Internet-enabled digital camera, the phone automatically links to a related Web site. MyClick's idea is that companies will use the technology as part of innovative campaigns with user-generated content, contests, giveaways, voting, coupons, social networking and the like. For example, an image could be incorporated into a hangtag or garment, consumers could upload photos of themselves wearing the garment, vote on which photos they like best, and the winning images could be printed on the hangtags, published online, or e-mailed to friends.
Hong Kong-based MyClick, which is more than a decade old and handles marketing for 300 merchants and 60 financial institutions, is in talks with fashion and beauty companies to use its image recognition technology in the U.S. Expect at least one campaign to break within a month or so, said co-founder and executive director Dorothy Cheng.
Internet-enabled phones are not as common in the U.S. and Europe as they are in Asia, but use is growing among young people. In Europe, 38 percent of all cell phone users are expected to use the mobile Internet by 2013, according to a recent report from Forrester Research Inc.
In China, Estée Lauder printed up a colorful brochure with a MyClick image on the back where consumers could get more information. The direct mail piece offered a free makeover and drove traffic to the counter.
While MyClick could not divulge the results of particular campaigns, in general, a small campaign of one to two weeks' duration and restricted reach generates a response of about 1 to 2 percent, said Cheng. Longer and broader campaigns average a response rate of 3 to 6 percent. An event-driven promotion can go as high as 60 percent, she said.
An image could be printed in a magazine, on a store shelf, at the point of sale, in collateral materials, in an e-mail blast, during a television program, at a bus stop, on the side of a bus or in a taxi or train compartment. For example, a rotating cube could appear on the bottom of the screen throughout a football game or fashion week coverage and offer a "lucky draw" to keep viewers watching throughout the program and breaks.If a viewer has a phone without a camera, she can type in a code with the same result.
Other companies have used 2-D barcodes in a similar fashion, but the barcodes don't include graphics and don't look as good. MyClick's image recognition technology is patented.
Such a campaign costs in the five figures for one month, and an annual license is somewhere in the six figures, said Cheng. The number of images a company can use is unlimited.
The 40-person company has run upwards of four dozen image campaigns in China. Many Chinese brands have repeated their campaigns and some have signed multiyear licenses "because it's fun and cool," said Cheng.
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa's “I-did-it-my-way” ethos stood out starkly at a time when brands are experimenting with consumer-facing fashion shows, coed formats and trans-seasonal collections – anything to perk up lackluster sales of ready-to-wear in an age of Insta-everything. “It’s not creation anymore. This becomes a purely industrial approach,” the late designer told WWD in an interview last year. “But anyway, the rhythm of collections is so stupid. It’s unsustainable. There are too many collections.” Read more about the iconic designer’s life and work on wwd.com, link in bio. #wwdfashion #azzedinealaia (📷: @WWD Archive, 1986) #alaia
Sneaker reselling app @goat’s latest exhibit, "The Greatest: New York," tells the story of New York's sneaker culture. To celebrate the exhibit, an intimate crowd gathered on Thursday night at the pop-up gallery space, located at Platform in Culver City, to hear guest speaker and illustrator @esymai talk about her own rise in streetwear and women in the business. "For me I'm just someone who is creative. I like to create things," said Chang. #wwdfashion
Azzedine Alaïa, one of the most iconic couturiers of the modern era whose body-con designs defined Eighties fashion, has died in Paris. The diminutive Tunisian-born designer, known for his structured knitted dresses with fitted waists and impeccably cut, figure-hugging second skin silhouettes was deeply admired by his peers, and counted supermodel Naomi Campbell - his adoptive daughter - among his inner circle, one of a gang of glamazons including Farida Khelfa, Carla Bruni and Stephanie Seymour who became ambassadors of his style. (📷: Alexandre Guirkinger) #wwdblast