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5 Luxury Brands That Are Now Digital Natives

In this day and age, one would think it's imperative for any major brand to have an online presence. But shockingly, there are still a lot of brands that haven't embraced the benefits of technology. We understand that brands can be very protective of their image - they want to maintain an air of exclusivity that feels aspirational and not overly accessible - but as the brands on this list prove: adopting digital technology can actually do just that, increasing brand awareness and sales without sacrificing reputation.

Here are just a few brands that once only had an offline presence but are now truly at home in the digital landscape. Let us know which ones you would add to the list in the comments.

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1. Burberry

When you think of Burberry, you probably think of words like "timeless" and "classic." Which is why we love that the 158-year-old British brand was one of the first luxury fashion brands to truly embrace the idea of an online presence. Their website doesn't just offer an e-commerce experience, they also live-stream fashion shows, and offer behind-the-scenes access to events and music. Burberry also has an impressive presence across all social media channels and is one of the most engaged and followed brands on Instagram. In fact, "the brand openly admits that that it has become as much a media content company as a design company." In this day and age, it's the best way to remain both relevant and aspirational. It's also earned them the distinction of being the most popular luxury brand online.

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2. Estee Lauder

It wasn't that long ago that if women wanted to shop for Estee Lauder's beauty products, they did so by going to a department store. But that wasn't Estee Lauder's fault. They actually launched their e-commerce site in 1996, well before a lot of us even had email addresses. When Apple launched the iPhone in 2007, Estee Lauder took that as their cue to start developing a mobile strategy. Estee Lauder has really embraced digital, leveraging the elegance and luxury of their print ads to create a personalized online experience that provides clients with the education and they'd find at the beauty counter as well as a simple way to make purchases.

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3. Gucci

Almost 13 million people like Gucci on Facebook. Over 1.3 million follow the brand on Instagram. Add to that 1.06 million Twitter followers and almost 7 million views on YouTube and it's clear that Gucci has found success with their digital presence. You can even go inside Gucci stores using Google maps . Sure, maybe not all of the people following and interacting with Gucci online can afford a thousand dollar handbag right now, but by creating brand loyalty, you can be sure that's something they'll aspire towards in the future.

4. Audi

Audi hasn't always had the best reputation in the U.S., but with over 8 million Facebook likes, 708K Twitter followers, and over 827K Instagram followers, one would never know that now. Mostly what Audi is great at is creating content that people actually want to engage with and share, like their recent spot featuring Ricky Gervais and a handful of other celebrities reciting the lyrics to Queen's "We Are the Champions."

5. Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton understands that luxury is something all people want to experience. They also understand that their target audience still buys print and loves print magazines. So last year they released an app that brought those campaigns to life. What is most impressive however is not the creation of the Louis Vuitton Pass app, but that there is a completely seamless way to actually purchase the luxury items directly from the app. In a time where so many luxury brands insist that the customer actually go into the story, we love that Louis Vuitton gets that just isn't how the next generation shops.

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