Recently members of our London team attended the annual TFWA (Tax Free World Association) World Exhibition & Conference in Cannes, France. Described as “the only truly global event for marketing to international travelers,” the TFWA is very much a priority for Webb deVlam to connect with existing and new clients, but also to observe and distill the latest developments within the travel retail channel.

Many of the industry categories represented at TFWA this year included a vast array of companies who are owners of well established prestige and luxury brands that are steeped in heritage and have strong premium positioning.

One of the challenges for many brands in this space is how to maintain a fresh and modern appeal yet equally hold on to original historical brand equities.

“It is often the case that a luxury brand may have a history or heritage going back centuries in some cases, but at the same time they desire to be fresh, stylish and appealling in a modern context, ” says Dominic Burke, Creative Director at Webb deVlam. “For such brands there is often a tension between these two sides of the messaging spectrum and the skill is to successfully articulate the old and the new in a seamless and memorable way.”

Burke and the rest of the team identified five basic principles that brands should keep top of mind, with one that may be the most disruptive to traditional thinking:

  1. 1. Break some rules.
  2. Because of its unique position, travel retail offers the opportunity to visually stretch the brand and play with its equities more than would be typically acceptable for the usual channels. Seize the opportunity to be a bit more flexible with the brand equities – have fun. Be adventurous. Be bold, and show off your brand with confidence.

If you’d like to learn more from Dominic Burke about the other principles that can help brands build upon existing equities but create a new experience for modern audiences, contact us.


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