Dopplr is the Social Media “Goyard”

Lisa Sounio’s presentation at Plugg invited me to write about something that I have been for a while trying to find the time for: Dopplr.

In life, the more experience one gathers, the more keenly one seeks for quality. Much has been said about Dopplr, now two years in our lives, but I do not think anyone has made the analysis that I am about to make: that Dopplr has a lot more to do with a luxury brand than with the big bazaar of the Internet. And still, I wouldn’t dare say that Dopplr is just like any other Super-Brand in the luxury world, but more like Goyard. Oh, you don’t know what La Maison Goyard is? You see, there is an überluxury and that is this French hand-made luggage maker that began its trade in 1853 and discreetly services the world from rue Saint Honore in Paris.

Luxury of this kind is not about flashy but about quality and craftsmanship. Dopplr is not just any other social travel site. Behind its simplicity, like Goyard luggage, there is a myriad of insightful tokens that throughout the year Dopplr regales us with: our footprint around the world, in a beautifully designed poster showing my top destinations; the cities where most of our friends coincide with us, reminding us that staying in touch is really at our hand; places to visit, eat, drink or relax that do not show up in travel guides because they have been recommended by our friends and circle of trusted parties. Dopplr is a microcosm of subtle recommendations and displays a finesse that is understated but very much appreciated. This is what luxury used to be before it showed up in hiphop videos.

Think of Dopplr when I describe Goyard and see for yourself:

” In the past, the Grand Duke of Russia, the Maharajah de Kapurthala, The Duke and Duchess of Windsor and many aristocratic families, all travelled with Goyard luggage; and their special orders have always been an important part of Goyard’s reputation. Other famous clients have included: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, Madonna, Karl Lagerfeld, Gregory Peck, Pablo Picasso, Gary Cooper, John D. Rockefeller… even Kanye West nowadays.

Dopplr began its existence being beta-tested by the most iconic travelers of the international Generation E (Entrepreneurs). After them, corporate travelers from Fortune 500 companies followed suit, and many more likeminded people of all trades and races.

“Goyard is known for its hard-sided trunks and small accessories. All pieces are covered in a signature hand-painted patented chevron canvas made of cotton, linen, and hemp and displayed in various colors. The chevron canvas was created in 1892 and was traditionally produced in black and red.”

Much praise is due to the Dopplr design team for its elegant and visually engaging work. Its multicoloured logo has semiotic values that play a meaningful role in my travel mapping.

Dopplr is not just about voyaging and connecting to the unique happiness that only loved ones provide us with. Goyard is not just about making good durable luggage. It’s even one huge step above LV. Dopplr is not just about connecting to friends – something at which Facebook and Twitter perform amply. It is about the joy I get when I sit at a meal with my friends, when I am with them physically, not just on the Internet. Both Goyard and Dopplr reveal subtle values that attract a very specific type of person: a person of discerning taste that can appreciate not just functional values, but the imperceptible delight that one gets from the finer things in life: a traveling piece that will only get better with usage, a traveling site that will bring me the happiness of physical contact. Physicality is a commodity that I predict will go up in value as our world expands and grows into dimensions other than the third in which we live. Mind you, many of us live happily in the fourth dimension, the Internet, a parallel digital space that has no geographical boundaries.

Imagine a service that brings the senses back, not just efficiency. A train arriving on time is not about technical prowess. It’s about the pleasure of knowing that we will reach our destination when we planned and so we then truly enjoy the scenery from our cabin window.

Have you ever wondered what subtle ingredients your service has to have to reach this perfection? I hail Dopplr and I wish it many, many more days, travels and happy gatherings to come. I know I will.


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