Geneva Watch Group designs and manufactures watches for some of the world’s most popular brands, including Kenneth Cole and Ted Baker London. Founded in 1974, the company is a global leader in the watch industry and loved by consumers all over the world.
Geneva’s marketing strategy revolves around social media and influencer marketing. Partnerships with key Instagram influencers have been instrumental in helping the brand drive sales and generate widespread brand awareness.
We spoke with Karen Teboul (Global Brand Manager), Jackie Menkes (Brand Manager), and Deanna Pinto (Marketing Specialist), three members of Geneva’s Brand Management team, to learn more about the company’s success with influencer marketing and plans for the coming year.
1. Please introduce yourself and tell us a bit about Geneva Watch Group (e.g. brief history, how Geneva Watch Group works, etc.).
Geneva Watch Group is a global leader in the design, manufacturing, and distribution of quality timepieces. Our talented pool of brand managers works closely with our product teams to create watches under licensed fashion and lifestyle brands such as Kenneth Cole New York, Kenneth Cole Reaction, Ted Baker London and Sean John.
Our world-class design team uses a contemplative artistic process that promises a variety of unparalleled looks, sure to catch the eye and sophisticated taste of today’s consumer. Specializing in brand enhancement, our designers seamlessly integrate and complement the nuances and characteristics of each brand, while keeping an eye on the collection’s overall aesthetic.
2. How has Geneva Watch Group adapted its marketing to the growth and popularity of social media (specifically Instagram) from more traditional advertising efforts?
Geneva Watch Group recognizes the importance of the digital age and has created an impressive marketing platform that revolves around social media. We’ve leveraged influencers and compelling imagery to connect with a wide variety of target demographics globally.
Through constant monitoring of daily impressions and engagement, we can relate to our customers and convert “clicks” into sales.
3. As Brand Managers, how consumers perceive and resonate with your brand is paramount. What are the top 3 things you keep in mind when crafting and maintaining a brand on social media?
As Brand Managers, it is extremely important to maintain the brand DNA in everything we introduce to the market. Specific to the watch category – we continue to challenge ourselves to be the leaders in the market when it comes to our product, price points, and positioning.
4. How does Geneva Watch Group primarily distinguish itself from the myriad of watch companies saturating the social media space?
For starters, as a distributor of licensed brands Geneva takes an active role in investing in each of our brands marketing efforts. We can leverage off the brand’s already developed presence in the market to differentiate us from other watch players in the industry.
We’ve recently begun to create and manage in-house social media campaigns for some of our licensed brands. In parallel, we work closely with each of our brands to make sure the watch category is represented across all of their branded platforms as well.
5. Out of all your influencer marketing campaigns, which one is your personal favorite and why? Any other standout campaigns you’re especially proud of or favorite social media influencers?
Out of all our influencer marketing campaigns, Kenneth Cole has been our personal favorite. We have been able to test and learn via different marketing initiatives and influencer campaigns around the world to see what resonates best with our target consumer.
6. Hashtags, branded or not, can be a great way to help brand and unify a campaign across social. You’ve developed novel ones including #tedtotoe and #maketime for a Kenneth Cole Father’s Day campaign — what are your tips for creating a successful and memorable hashtag consumers love?
When creating a hashtag unique to your brand and campaign we like to find clever ways to play up “time”. It is always important to make sure the unique hashtag resonates with the consumer on a personal level – we believe that is how you create that successful relationship.
7. If you were forced to delete all but one of Geneva Watch Group’s social media channels, which platform would you save and why?
If we were forced to delete all but one of Geneva’s social media channels – we would save our Instagram handle. It allows us to connect with our consumers on a global level while showcasing our full portfolio in a seamless way.
8. Any big projects, initiatives, or launches on the horizon you’d like to share?
We are excited to announce that we’ve partnered with Glamour Magazine to create a line of watch and jewelry gift sets under the brand name: Glamour Editor’s Pick. The website launched this week under the URL www.glamouraccessories.com.
Across all our brands we are focusing heavily on growing our ECOM presence as we see this to be the future across all categories.
9. What are some emerging marketing trends in the watch space you feel will gain traction in 2018?
Going into 2018 we feel that the digital and social space will continue to gain momentum and importance across all categories and brands. We believe that influencers will become more relevant as well – i.e. branded partnerships and collaborations.
This interview has been edited for clarity.