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Luxury Brand Management: A World of Privilege, 2nd Edition by Gerald Mazzalovo, Michel Chevalier

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CHAPTER 7

Managing Creation

In this chapter, we will focus on the creativity that a luxury brand needs to apply to its products or services. Needless to say, creativity and innovation in business functions are the main sources of competitive advantage in all industries, and even more so in the luxury sectors, whereby the customer naturally expects a great deal of originality within what he perceives to be the aesthetic characteristics of the brand. He also expects the product to be recognizable and carry a part of the dream inherent in the brand.

At Louis Vuitton, for example, the seasonal variations made on the LV monogram (graffiti, cherries, new colors, new materials, embossed LV, etc.) have recently served these purposes and confirm Marc Jacobs’ creative talents and the opening of the brand to talented artists like Takashi Murakami.

Managing creative people has never been an easy task, even for themselves. In this chapter, after presenting a description of the nature of creative activities for a luxury brand, we will delve into the organizational matters related to it, with real-life examples of design structures and their underlying logic. This will show how product management interfaces with the creative work. We will also propose some insights into how the notion of brand aesthetics can help in solving some creative management issues, and finish the chapter by talking about the bridges that exist between brands’ creative activities and arts.

The Nature of Creative Activities ...

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