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Lulu Raghavan
Managing Director,
Landor Mumbai

Trends in luxury

November 18, 2013

It’s a bold new world out there. The luxury brands that will experience the greatest success this coming year will be those that employ sophisticated consumer segmentation techniques, invest in experience-enhancing technology, and exploit digital and social media to connect with customers. 

Defining luxury

Luxury is in major flux and will continue to be so in 2014. The word luxury has different shades of meaning in every language, and that meaning has been stretched almost beyond recognition in some cases. Is luxury about the highest quality goods produced by excellent craftsmanship, affordable to only a few? Or is it more democratic? Is it about spending the most you can to acquire a possession, or is it the ability to indulge in time, silence, and space? A badge to signal status, or the quest for something more personally meaningful? No single definition seems to encompass this broad field, with luxury meaning different things to different people.

Integration of technology

Luxury brands will turn more and more to technology to create engaging experiences for consumers. Various brand rankings in 2013 observe that luxury brands honoring their heritage while pursuing the latest technology have the greatest edge. Studies cite Mercedes-Benz for its 6 percent increase in brand value attributable to its embrace of green technologies. Burberry too has reaped the benefits of its tech initiatives such as the 3-D holographic runway. Louis Vuitton’s Mon Monogram allows customers to add initials to their bags, a trend toward mass customization enabled by technology. 

Maximizing digital and social media opportunities

In 2014 we will see a big rush to digitalize. Inspired by trailblazers like Burberry, luxury brands will be looking to revitalize their digital strategies to connect with the new generation of tech-savvy consumers. Christie’s secure platform for iPhone bidding, Armani’s Tweet Talks, Fendi’s Peplum People video by Karl Lagerfeld, and Burberry’s catalogue on Pinterest are just a few examples of recent digital forays undertaken by luxury brands. 

 

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