Watch and jewelry brands trail their luxury fashion counterparts in followers and interactions on Instagram. Ambassadors and sponsored events provide an opportunity to increase reach and engagement.

Legacy brands often focus on high-profile sponsorships, while digital leaders translate events and ambassador sponsorships into social media earnings. Brands should strategically time posts with relevance to offline events, tag influencers and events in posts and proliferate content across owned and influencer handles to capitalize on partnerships. Just as importantly, brands must understand that the content driving performance on influencers’ handles may not reap the same rewards on brand-owned handles or vice versa. Chopard maximizes the impact of ambassador partnerships by finding reach through trending hashtags, according to Gartner L2’s report on the topic. During Cannes 2018, the brand flooded its account with posts of its official red-carpet partners, including Elle Fanning and Marion Cotillard. In addition to tagging the handles of its high-profile sponsors, the brand used the hashtag #Cannes2018 in post captions. In June 2018, the hashtag was used in nearly a quarter of a million posts. As a result, the brand’s handle gained over 54,000 followers during the two-week film festival.

Meanwhile, Tudor leverages its ambassadorship with musician Jay Chou to increase visibility around brand events. The brand tagged Chou’s profile—boasting over 4 million followers—in a post announcing Tudor’s Beijing Store opening in November 2018, achieving a 544% spike in daily follower growth relative to the yearly average. The brand also linked content and commerce by tagging the newly launched Tudor 1926 watch on the ambassador’s wrist. Despite operating a single global Instagram handle, leader Hublot utilizes strategic partnerships with regional sports events and influencers to target localized audiences. The brand works with athletes, including Dutch track and field star Dafne Schippers and French soccer player Kylian Mbappé, to support campaigns on influencer-owned handles. Going a step further, the brand also synergizes content across owned and ambassador handles—Hublot and Mbappé posted images of Mbappé’s win at the Ballon d’Or ceremony within 48 hours of each other, making sure to tag one another. The post on the brand’s handle saw a 48% lift in interactions relative to its yearly average, and the football player’s post resulted in over 60 times the brand’s interactions.

Brands should learn from these examples when partnering with ambassadors and events as promoting sponsorships online only adds to brand awareness.

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