Luxury Consumers Shop for Experiences

August 13, 2004

Luxury Consumers Shop for Experiences

Luxury consumers are driven more by experiences than the exclusivity or cost of the item says a new study from Unity Marketing aimed at boosting selling strategies to luxury consumers.

According to the study's author, Pam Danziger, almost 90% of luxury consumers agree with the statement, "Luxury doesn't have to the most expensive thing or be the most exclusive brand."

She says affluent consumers are just as likely to shop with at Wal-Mart or Target as they are to frequent Madison Avenue boutiques.

"Luxury just isn't about the thing any more. It is about the special experience one feels buying or owning that thing," says Danziger.

Her findings echo the trends today among jewelers who focus high-end marketing to meet the individual needs of their core consumers. Price and exclusivity, Danziger notes, are not the keys to that consumer's interest. All luxury consumers, up and down the income scale, gain their greatest luxury thrills from experiences, she says.

Danziger adds that rather than exclusivity, the American luxury consumer values the ability to express a personal point of view, an attitude and uniqueness. The challenge for luxury marketers, she says, is to make their customers feel special, but never let it change into class snobbery.

The study, "Luxury Market Report 2004 – Who Buys Luxury, What They Buy, Why They Buy," is available from Unity Marketing at

by Michael Thompson

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