Below is our interesting Q&A with Natalia Langsdale, Founder of Bright Creativity, a Marketing Consulting & PR company. Natalia has successfully worked directly in both yachting and private aviation sectors, so we at Paddock magazine were truly eager to hear what she had to say about the luxury market and Formula 1.
What has changed in the luxury sector you were part of during the very recent years?
The definition of the rapidly changing face of luxury has been put into the limelight whereby the move has gone from simply acquiring “things” to the acquisition of experiences.
Moreover, we see a brand new and younger generation of buyers in the ultra-wealthy, referred to as Generation Y or Millennials, whose primary aspiration is in rare, tailored and bespoke experiences. The way marketing is done to capture this new-age target group has seen a tremendous jump from what was done a few years back.
As the search for luxury shifts from the more “traditional” goods and services to unique experiences, we see that UHNWI (Ultra High Net Worth Individuals) are indeed seeking that the return on any investment or purchase is maximised in every possibly means.
The notion of one of a kind springs to mind whereby time, privacy and personalisation are the three main factors that shine today as pure luxury. Both yachting and private aviation today go above and beyond what we have traditionally seen in the past, with some exciting revelations coming our way.
Markets are like clouds, they don’t go away, they simply move around.
How are Formula 1 clients different from your other customers?
The definition of “client” does not change across the board, as it is all about delivering service and ensuring that the experience is a positive one. Nevertheless, Formula 1 is not only about the sport. It is also about everything that goes with it like the glamour and intrigue and the atmosphere that attracts not only the true racing aficionados, but also celebrities, models and those wishing to target the UHNWI. Therefore, it is crucial for those concerned to offer hospitality that really exceeds expectations while offering unparalleled insight into all aspects of Formula 1. Driver appearances, the venues offering private viewing opportunities on yachts or other, the hospitality, travel and accommodation, pit and garage tours – are all primordial in making the race viewing an exciting and memorable one.
As with any customer, good customer service will inevitably be in your favour if you focus on being ultra-responsive, exceed expectations, and listening to needs. All of these qualities are ones that Bright Creativity takes very seriously and delivers with the utmost care.
How do you see the whole Formula 1 industry today, business-wise?
Formula 1 today is perhaps seen as one of the most distinctive sporting businesses that exists. It is said that more than 300 brands sponsor the sport and is the world’s most watched annual sports series. Aside from sponsors, governments are equally heavily implied in the business making it first and foremost a business than a sport in the traditional terms. Gone are the days of the first Formula 1 driving days where drivers had to be engineers and live and breathe the cars in order to race and were everyday risking their lives. Today, Formula 1 has no shortage of controversy but is a lot safer, more controlled and perhaps even a whole more predictable. It’s a money-making industry highly sought-after and to an extent in some manners white elitist.
What racing series or other sports could Formula 1 learn a thing or two from in terms of social media, brand engagement, maybe PR?
There is old school and then there is new age and today many sectors, such as Formula 1, could do with refocusing their marketing to taking on the new generation of audience, using the likes of social media, online, video and targeted experience marketing more. Formula 1 is in particular very restrictive in using this technology despite being so technology advanced themselves for the cars, the internal communication etc. Too often social media is termed as irrelevant as it is not bringing in money in the short term. It is not about that though. It is about brand engagement and the long run, building up a buzz and attracting more fans who in turn later on will inevitably be more involved.
Talking about sponsorship, what sectors are still undiscovered by Formula 1?
In its current state, Formula 1 certainly sits in a good place and has a fantastic worldwide appeal for sponsors and marketers as well as fans. Today though, it tends to follow markets and clients in the fast growing markets such as Asia, Latin America and Africa. Recently I heard an interesting expression: “Markets are like clouds, they don’t go away, they simply move around”. This is exactly what is happening in Formula 1 as is in other industries, making the opportunities far and wide.
What made you decide to start your own company?
Having worked within a variety of industries and always one to seek out new opportunities, I decided to launch Bright Creativity to lend a fresh approach to my extensive international network of professional contacts spanning all industries. The number of times particularly high-end businesses would ask for my open-minded expertise made me realise the potential was there and going ahead with my own business meant I could tap into all the areas that I had always wanted to fulfil.
I strongly believe in setting customer expectations, being my customer’s trusted advisor pulling from my past experience and building on customer loyalty in order to build on customer retention. The age old saying goes: “Do business with people you trust”. It doesn’t matter which industry you are in, be it Formula 1, yachting or aviation, it is important to start building on shared values with clients and showing that you take an interest in them and their success.