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Agency Life

Building a Brands Cultural Footprint

Building a Brands Cultural Footprint

Sulaiman Beg

Sulaiman Beg

November 21, 2018

BETC ETOILE ROUGE’s Brune Buonomano shares that there's more to luxury brands than price tags.

Brune Buonomano

Brune Buonomano, Managing Director of BETC ETOILE ROUGE, talks about the need for luxury, fashion, and beauty brands to build their cultural footprint in order to mark their time.


How’d you get your start in the industry?
I started at Havas Paris as a consultant specializing in branding and advertising. After four years as New Business and Marketing Director, I had the opportunity to join BETC Luxe, which was a way for me to combine creative strategies with culture and fashion.

Tell us about BETC ETOILE ROUGE.
BETC ETOILE ROUGE is BETC’s agency dedicated to luxury, fashion, and beauty brands. We’re now 70 specialists based in Paris with a multifaceted offering: from strategic consulting to content factories, as well as trend analysis, fashion consulting, and semantics—to go with traditional expertise like advertising, publishing, and social media. We are lucky to work with beautiful brands, such as Louis Vuitton, Raffles, Christofle, Yves Saint Laurent Beauté, Parfums Christian Dior, Dom Pérignon, Fondation Louis Vuitton, Guerlain, the LVMH Prize, Sephora, Valentino, and Van Cleef & Arpels.

Can you tell us a little about the agency’s vision?
Building a brand today requires that we look for what makes it valuable and what constitutes its genetic inheritance. For years, we’ve been looking to build timeless brands, convinced that luxury is defined by its capacity to withstand time, reading everywhere that luxury is found in what’s expensive, what shines, what boosts social status. What if all of these principles were now outdated? What if today the most powerful luxury brands were those able to embody their era, their communities, their culture? Building a cultural footprint is almost as if we applied the logic of the carbon footprint to brands and what surrounds them. The cultural footprint is the brand’s positive or negative impact on its cultural environment. It is almost like the trail of a scent, the trace you leave behind once you leave the room.

"Street and couture are no longer two separate planets. Boundaries are increasingly blurry. Sustainability is becoming a real positive pressure. This is all very inspiring, very exciting."

What excites you about the fashion and beauty world?
When you reach a certain level of power and exposure as a brand, you owe it to yourself to give it back to your era. Today’s luxury industries are ready to support new generations of artists and designers and to, therefore, take risks, to make audacious choices when it comes to the people they promote or even to the people they collaborate with. Street and couture are no longer two separate planets. Boundaries are increasingly blurry. Sustainability is becoming a real positive pressure. This is all very inspiring, very exciting.

Is there a common misconception many may have regarding the marketing of luxury, fashion, and beauty brands?
First, that it’s just about craft and not about strategy, insight, ideas, or concepts. Second, and it’s directly related, is that luxury brands have nothing more to offer than beautiful and expensive products, when in fact they are witnesses of their time, with the power to build strong imaginations that trigger cultural impressions.  

What is Mastermind magazine and what goes into the agency’s role as a publisher?
Mastermind is a laboratory of ideas, published twice yearly, founded by acclaimed stylist and creative editor Marie-Amélie Sauvé and myself two years ago. It offers a perspective on the issues and the people of our time, from fashion to design, from art to the world of ideas. It is aimed at a mixed and eclectic readership eager to explore new cultural horizons. To publish it, we’ve created, at the heart of BETC, Le Magazine Général, a proper press company.

What’s the biggest impact that you feel you’ve made in your career, so far?
In my career, I couldn’t say. But in my personal life, it’s definitely my son, Joseph.

What inspires you?
French Nouvelle Vague cinema, vintage interior design, Italy, and food!

What’s your latest guilty pleasure?
A lemon pavlova from Bontemps, my favorite pastry on Rue de Bretagne in Paris.

Brune Buonomano

Brune Buonomano, Managing Director of BETC ETOILE ROUGE, talks about the need for luxury, fashion, and beauty brands to build their cultural footprint in order to mark their time.


How’d you get your start in the industry?
I started at Havas Paris as a consultant specializing in branding and advertising. After four years as New Business and Marketing Director, I had the opportunity to join BETC Luxe, which was a way for me to combine creative strategies with culture and fashion.

Tell us about BETC ETOILE ROUGE.
BETC ETOILE ROUGE is BETC’s agency dedicated to luxury, fashion, and beauty brands. We’re now 70 specialists based in Paris with a multifaceted offering: from strategic consulting to content factories, as well as trend analysis, fashion consulting, and semantics—to go with traditional expertise like advertising, publishing, and social media. We are lucky to work with beautiful brands, such as Louis Vuitton, Raffles, Christofle, Yves Saint Laurent Beauté, Parfums Christian Dior, Dom Pérignon, Fondation Louis Vuitton, Guerlain, the LVMH Prize, Sephora, Valentino, and Van Cleef & Arpels.

Can you tell us a little about the agency’s vision?
Building a brand today requires that we look for what makes it valuable and what constitutes its genetic inheritance. For years, we’ve been looking to build timeless brands, convinced that luxury is defined by its capacity to withstand time, reading everywhere that luxury is found in what’s expensive, what shines, what boosts social status. What if all of these principles were now outdated? What if today the most powerful luxury brands were those able to embody their era, their communities, their culture? Building a cultural footprint is almost as if we applied the logic of the carbon footprint to brands and what surrounds them. The cultural footprint is the brand’s positive or negative impact on its cultural environment. It is almost like the trail of a scent, the trace you leave behind once you leave the room.

"Street and couture are no longer two separate planets. Boundaries are increasingly blurry. Sustainability is becoming a real positive pressure. This is all very inspiring, very exciting."

What excites you about the fashion and beauty world?
When you reach a certain level of power and exposure as a brand, you owe it to yourself to give it back to your era. Today’s luxury industries are ready to support new generations of artists and designers and to, therefore, take risks, to make audacious choices when it comes to the people they promote or even to the people they collaborate with. Street and couture are no longer two separate planets. Boundaries are increasingly blurry. Sustainability is becoming a real positive pressure. This is all very inspiring, very exciting.

Is there a common misconception many may have regarding the marketing of luxury, fashion, and beauty brands?
First, that it’s just about craft and not about strategy, insight, ideas, or concepts. Second, and it’s directly related, is that luxury brands have nothing more to offer than beautiful and expensive products, when in fact they are witnesses of their time, with the power to build strong imaginations that trigger cultural impressions.  

What is Mastermind magazine and what goes into the agency’s role as a publisher?
Mastermind is a laboratory of ideas, published twice yearly, founded by acclaimed stylist and creative editor Marie-Amélie Sauvé and myself two years ago. It offers a perspective on the issues and the people of our time, from fashion to design, from art to the world of ideas. It is aimed at a mixed and eclectic readership eager to explore new cultural horizons. To publish it, we’ve created, at the heart of BETC, Le Magazine Général, a proper press company.

What’s the biggest impact that you feel you’ve made in your career, so far?
In my career, I couldn’t say. But in my personal life, it’s definitely my son, Joseph.

What inspires you?
French Nouvelle Vague cinema, vintage interior design, Italy, and food!

What’s your latest guilty pleasure?
A lemon pavlova from Bontemps, my favorite pastry on Rue de Bretagne in Paris.

Sulaiman Beg is Havas' Director of Global Internal Communications. He has never eaten canned tuna fish.

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