Posted at Jan 21, 2019 5:09:00 PM by THAT Agency | Share
There are many pitfalls when it comes to marketing high end products. Most of these have to do with antiquated concepts of advertising that no longer hold true for younger generations or that aren't effective because of advancements in technology. Marketing luxury items today demands a willingness to adapt to fresher storytelling and newer concepts of personal choice, exclusivity, and technology.
A Story and How It's Told
Marketing luxury items is as much about marketing a story as it is about marketing the product itself. Perhaps even more so. In an interconnected world, customers have their choice of similar products. If the product of different brands hold a similar appeal, what sets yours over the next dozen is the story you tell.
This doesn't just mean figuring out what that narrative is. It also means figuring out how to tell it. Is your brand something that can celebrate a long legacy? Stories featuring multiple generations of a family passing it on further that appeal. Your brand will still hold value after all the flash-in-the-pan competitors have dissolved.
Or is your story about challenging legacy brands with something new, about bucking the status quo? Then you need a story about how you've already done that, how you're more fleet-footed and forward-thinking than the stolid legacy brands.
Personal Choice Over Identity
Marketing high end products is often treated as selling people an identity. This may have once been true, but the concept has evolved. Customers see through this much more easily today than they did before. The story you tell should connect to the choices they make and idealize, not the identity you want to sell.
Whereas high-end customers once craved the value of separating themselves from others through their purchases, today there's a stronger drive toward building their own value without becoming lost from other wealth brackets. This is especially true for younger generations. There's a greater desire for kinship and acceptance, to be able to enjoy luxury without allowing the luxury itself to alienate them from others.
To younger generations, luxury brands are still an emblem of wealth, but much less so than they've been in the past. The greater value is that they're an emblem of personal choice.
Exclusivity is Good...to a Point
Rarity matters. That said, understand that exclusivity is paid for with visibility. Marketing high end products means diving deep into your niche segment more than working to create broad appeal, but accessibility is something different. The luxury brands that break out are the ones that make the rare more accessible bit by bit.
Now, an exclusive contract might come along. It's too good to pass up. Building the brand takes advantage of visibility; maintaining, changing, or – let's be frank – cashing in on it one day might be about exclusivity.
The point is to always understand that exclusivity comes at a price of visibility. It doesn't mean you can't sacrifice visibility for exclusivity, but it means that when you do, make sure that it's worth it and that the balance comes out in your brand's favor.
Technology = Communication
Technology does a great deal to make your internal processes more efficient, whether it's through production, accounting, or company workflow. Do not overlook the advantages technology provides in amplifying every positive message about your brand.
The guideline of diving deep holds true here. You don't want to just use every social media platform there is every now and again. You want to get very good at a particular one that you're providing regular content, and branch out from there. This is more efficient because once you understand one – whether it's Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, etc. – it's much easier to adapt to the next.
Create regular content about your products and their stories, whether through your own producers or through a third-party you hire. Post it on all platforms, but focus on boosting it through the one you're working at developing most now. Whenever customers post positive feedback, boost this, too. This is the most valuable form of advertising, and the content itself comes at no cost.