At the 2010 Financial Times Business of Luxury Conference, Marissa Mayer (Vice President, Search Products & User Experience, Google Inc.) and Dov Charney (Founder & Chief Executive Officer, American Apparel) singled out Madonna’s career as a model luxury brands should follow, citing her ability to maintain a strong core identity while constantly reinventing herself. Leonard A. Lauder (Chairman Emeritus, Estée Lauder Companies Inc.) put his own spin on how to achieve career success, saying “the key thing is this: You start high and you stay high. You start low and stay low.”
Debate on the role of digital media in the luxury industry was also lively, with Robert A. Iger (President & CEO, The Walt Disney Company) asserting that traditional marketing has been “eviscerated” by digital forms, while Jean-Christophe Bédos (President & CEO, Boucheron) contended that brands should “rethink their preconceptions that the internet necessarily equals a mass market. It’s like a city full of streets, and some are high streets and some are luxury destinations.” Marissa Mayer offered further advice to digital architects, saying that luxury websites should be orchestrated for a simpler and faster experience by employing “less flash” and automatically defaulting to the “view all” option when revealing search results.