“Rolex And Icons” Video Campaign Launches To Promote Famous Wearers

“Rolex And Icons” Video Campaign Launches To Promote Famous Wearers

Rolex has just launched a smart new new video promotional campaign called "Rolex And Icons." People often ask us "what watch brands are using social media well?" This requires a lot of thought as only a few come to mind who are even using social media properly. We've even asked experts who track this sort of data and it seems as though for the most part, fashion-based brands with a lot of products for women (i.e. Cartier and Chanel) are doing it best, and it isn't their watches that are keeping the social media momentum going. Rolex may be quite late to the social media game, but they are off to a great start.

I recently reported on Forbes regarding Rolex's new Facebook page here. They also have a YouTube channel that launched last year. Rolex's social media efforts are pertinent to their overall branding efforts and mark a rather good use of the media from a communications standpoint - though like many brands, they shy away from creating or encouraging an conversant community. A new series of clever and short videos will make up the newly launched "Rolex And Icons" campaign. To start, Rolex has produced two videos detailing how Andy Warhol and Elvis Presley were famous Rolex wearers.

About 30 seconds long each, the videos have that distinct sharp sounding Rolex writing and slick production value. The message is "this guy was famous and influential... and he wore a Rolex." Honestly, Rolex has a lot of these stories throughout history, with likely enough material for at least two dozen such videos. Rolex is lucky enough to have a roster of very famous wrists who donned their products, and using those stories for their current branding efforts is a no-brainer.

This, of course, is a non-product related campaign with little or no discussion about current Rolex watches. Rolex has understood something that I've been telling brands about for years - that marketing involves two distinct types of communication. One being communicating your products and the other being communications about your brand. Rolex tends to not blend the two, which in my opinion is very smart. The Rolex And Icons campaign is really just that, a sweet and simple picture of icons of history that wore Rolex watches. The videos are even presented like mini documentaries, which adds to the "informational" nature of the media. It is very well done, and a sign that Rolex has been planning how to properly tackle social media and internet marketing/advertising for a few years now.

Rolex's own description of the Rolex And Icons campaign is, "Worn by luminaries, visionaries and champions. By artists, statesmen, explorers and leaders in their field. Only Rolex can claim such a distinguished group of wearers from the past and present. Rolex pays homage to these remarkable individuals whose lives changed the face of the world." Whether you like Rolex or not, want one or already own one, this is a quality series which at the very least, illustrates what luxury watch brands need to be doing more of online.

What do you think? Is this a successful and interesting campaign by Rolex? Or does it do nothing for you? rolex.com

  • MarkCarson

    It will probably work for Rolex. I wonder if Proctor & Gamble will do something similar for Crest toothpaste. I’ll bet a lot of famous people brushed their teeth with it. Then again, P&G also makes Charmin toilet paper which has to have been used by a lot of famous a-holes. The tie-in possibilities are endless!
    Seriously, this will no doubt be a successful campaign for Rolex.

  • DangerussArt

    While I’m certain this will be effective, I have never been swayed or inspired to own anything based on brand ambassadors (paid or not) or event sponsorship. All those dollars spent on Tiger Woods and Roger Federer, F-1 tie ins and so on are lost on folk like me. The very idea that someone (including myself) would think “Hey he wears the same watch as this celebrity, he must be just a special” is completely absurd.

    • MarkCarson

      DangerussArt Yep – makes about as much sense as the German watch makers promoting their “Pilot” style watches as inspired by what was worn by World War II pilots. Hey wait – that means I must want to wear a watch like what was used by the Luftwaffe to bomb and strafe the Allies. Hmmm – maybe not.
      But I’m more OK with Omega’s Moonwatch as it was a functional item used by real pioneers of outer space.

  • Ulysses31

    Celebrity endorsements have never worked on me.  Perhaps i’m just odd that way.  Rolex’s idea of clever marketing seems about as contemporary as their watch designs.

    “Worn by luminaries, and men who die on the toilet stuffing their face while strung out on a pharmacy full of drugs.”

  • Ryan B

    A good watch company that has faith in their product would not need to
    ride on the backs of dead celebrities in order to convince to the masses
    that their mediocre creation is somehow the most superior by using
    names like champions, visionaries, and leaders. Because obviously Rolex
    is saying these people wouldn’t amount to shit if it were not for the
    watch on their wrist guiding them on their quest for greatness.

  • Gee Z

    Despite the criticism below, I believe it will be a successful campaign for Rolex. Branding works subconciously – consciousness does not drive our choices.
    Nevertheless, I believe there are ways for a better execution – the clips “feel” rather cold and soulless.

  • Zeitblom

    It reinforces my desire to stay away from Rolex as far as possible, in case someone thinks that I am the kind of idiot who would be influenced by campaigns like this.

  • DangerussArt

    One “last” thought. Most of these now dead notables were not watch fans. They wanted a “nice watch” so the either bought or were gifted the default choice.. To a vast number of people, Rolex is the only nice watch brand they can bring to mind. By default; nice watch = Rolex.  So essentially a shartload of people bought Rolex – some happened to be celebrities. BFD.  Billions eat at McDonalds too – doesn’t make them gastronomes or someone I want to emulate.

  • DG Cayse

    Rarely have I seen so many people openly admit to an advert campaign zoom so loftily over their heads.

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  • MarkCarson

    aleximd2000 I was not talking about the design of the watches. Only the marketing (associating WWII Germany). Cheers.