social media technology

Burberry and Google bring emotion to digital with virtual kissing campaign

Burberry Kisses

The latest digital innovation from Burberry sees a reimagination of the classic love letter, as fans around the world are able to send and share virtual kisses with one another.

Burberry Kisses, as it’s called, is a partnership with Google that combines personalised content and new technology in a bid to bring an element of emotion to online communications.

Users are able to send an impression of their own real kisses to loved ones by either using their desktop webcams via Google Chrome or by having direct lip contact with their touch screen devices. This so-named “kiss recognition technology” captures the outline of the pout, from which one of five Burberry lip colours can be added to dress it up, and a message typed in to the intended recipient.

On sending, both parties will see personalised animated content dependent on where in the world they are and where they’ve sent their kiss to, thanks to Google Earth and Google Streetview technology. The skylines of New York, Hong Kong, London and more are each shown for instance as the love note flies through the air to its destination. Detail also appears in puddles reflecting local views and recognisable street names.

The aim, according to the company, is to “humanise technology”, and to “translate the emotion of what we create and experience in the real world, into the digital space”.

Christopher Bailey, Burberry’s chief creative officer, said: “We’re constantly thinking about how we translate the emotion of what we create and experience in the real world into the digital space, whether that’s capturing the energy and excitement of a live gig, the hum and buzz of anticipation before a runway show, or just the feeling you get when you pull on your trench coat on a rainy morning. Burberry Kisses began with the idea of giving technology a bit of heart and soul, and using it to unite the Burberry family across the world – by telling a story that makes the digital personal.”

The soundtrack, Evergreen Love, by British Burberry Acoustic musician Misty Miller, was also chosen to provide “emotional resonance”. All outcomes can of course be shared over Google+, as well as the other usual social platforms.

The entire project will be captured in a World of Kissses map. This has two views – a real-time interactive version that shows ‘live’ kisses as they move around the world, and an ‘all’ option that reveals the cities sending and receiving the most.

The initiative is part of Google’s Art, Copy & Code series, which will be showcased during next week’s Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity.

BurberryKisses1Burberry Kisses - Skyline (New York)Burberry Kisses - World of Kisses

By Rachel Arthur

Rachel Arthur is Editor-in-Chief of Current Daily, the leading news source for fashion, retail and innovation, and the co-host of its weekly Innovators podcast. She otherwise serves as Co-Founder and Chief Innovation Officer of Current Global, a transformation consultancy driving growth within fashion luxury and retail. By background she is an award-winning business journalist and consultant, contributing to titles including Wired, Forbes and Business of Fashion.

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