As luxury has proven one of the more resilient industries in the current economic downturn, brands are aggressively attempting to position themselves as “luxury.” Clearly, however, all these products and brands are not created equal, making it imperative for luxury brands to differentiate from conventional digital marketing strategies.
From luxury and the meta-luxury concept to influencers and NFTs, we’re looking at creating brands beyond luxury and reading the high-end consumer with the help of the 2023 marketing trends for the luxury industry.
Beyond Luxury Come The Meta-Luxury Brands
There was a time when luxury was synonymous with grandeur, and only a select number of brands were considered luxurious. With the proliferation of brands, products, and experiences no longer defined by objective exclusivity, price, quality, or availability, the lines between what is considered premium and what isn’t are blurred.
Arguably, more and more businesses are trying to penetrate the luxury market as it’s more stable and profitable. There is no doubt, however, being seen as simply just “premium” is no longer enough for the ever-demanding high-end consumers, paving the way for a new, sophisticated: “meta-luxury.”
Interbrand’s Manifredi Rica and Rebecca Robins, illustrate the concept in their book “Luxury Brands and Culture of Excellence ”. In this, they define Meta-Luxury as “luxury beyond luxury”. It’s the concept of unique achievement that really sets luxury from meta-luxury brands-the idea that a brand has set out to accomplish something truly remarkable and timeless.
Becoming A Meta-Luxury Brand
At the heart of meta-luxury brands lies the uniqueness of expertise, purpose, timelessness, and achievement. It is a reflection of culture of excellence.
To better understand whether we represent a meta-luxury brand, we should ask ourselves, “How do we drive demand”, “What are customers ultimately looking for? “ Why do we value a limited watch collection made by a family-owned watch company more than a series of watches made by a watch giant?” “Why do we generally regard the work of a small, specialised workshop as being more valuable than the output of a generalist conglomerate?”
The real mission of a meta-luxury brand is to leave a legacy for future generations, which is the result of the brands ‘ drive to succeed in the respective industries and leave a mark on history by challenging conventional wisdom. Therefore, products and marketing strategies should revolve around a unique narrative and a distinctive heritage that taps into the need for uniqueness and connection of the luxury consumer.
In Search Of The Luxury Consumer
Meta-luxury brands are in a quest to explore and imagine possibilities around needs and desires, in order to offer something more than a premium product but rather a feeling, and an achievement. However, first, they need to solve the riddle of the luxury consumer.
While the demographics of luxury consumers have changed from Western, boomer, upper-class to the Gen Z and Millenial disruptor, the needs have not changed drastically. So, what do luxury consumers value today?
Connection And Exclusivity
Affluent individuals are looking for exclusivity and status. Brand reputation is more likely to influence them than traditional marketing tactics. Thus, digital marketing efforts should focus on building trust and creating a sense of uniqueness, exclusivity and belonging.
From curated special events and limited-access products to personalised gifts, tailored messages and memberships, brands need to strategise on on how to form a special bond with each prospective customer .
Quality And Experience
Quality and product experience reign as the key luxury indicators. Craftsmanship, authenticity and attention to detail even in the product packaging are at the epicenter.
Brands should strive to promote the superiority of their products and the unique care they have given to their production partnered with a unique narrative that gives a strong sense of identity. Most importantly they should ensure that every step of the customer journey whether digital or not should be a memorable experience that subconsciously evokes desire and a sense of belonging.
Consciousness And Sustainability
The rise of the Millennials has put forward brand values since personal values are reflected in purchases. Consumers are becoming more and more discerning about how they consume and are willing to stop buying brands that do not support the same values as them.
CSR practices and signals of eco-friendliness are under increased scrutiny, and conspicuous symbols of wealth and success are becoming less attractive. Whatever their category, ultra-sustainable products that have premium pricing and are made of the finest materials will soon be considered a luxury.
Reaching And Engaging With Luxury Consumers Through The 7 Luxury Trends Of 2023
Utility Nfts: Experimenting For A Brave New World
Despite the highly mediatised fall of cryptos in 2022, we anticipate an increase in innovative NFT luxury projects in 2023. Luxury brands will leverage blockchains to explore the real utility features of virtual ownership and authentication of physical goods beyond speculation.
You can get a glimpse of how the space might evolve by looking at the business models of companies like Courtyard, which uses blockchains to tokenise physical goods that are safely stored. As a result, owners can easily collect and trade physical valuables. At any time in the future, the NFT can be burned to redeem the physical good.
Metaverse: Meta-Luxury In A Digital World
Luxury is redefining the way we experience our world. In addition to empowering individual identities beyond physical appearances or physical interactions, luxury brands will also benefit from a growing metaverse.
As Apple prepares to debut its first mixed-reality headset in 2023, mass consumers will have a wide range of opportunities to experience virtual reality. While developing the technology and waiting for consumers to fully embrace it can take several years, the metaverse is here and will prove to be a strong growth area for luxury brands, which means the time to invest is now.
Sustainability: A Global Value
Digital marketing can use sustainability in a variety of ways to promote brands and create a positive image for the company. Some of the ways include green marketing through social media, email marketing, websites, and sustainable content creation with blog posts, infographics, videos, and case studies.
Partnering with influencers who share their values and commitment to sustainability to promote eco-friendly products along with employee advocacy can
increase the reach of the brand’s message.
Personalised experiences are a key factor in luxury marketing and can be created through segmented targeting, personalised content and even personalised product recommendations.
By offering one-on-one virtual consultations or appointments with luxury sales representatives, brands build a stronger relationship with the customer and provide them with a personalised, high-touch experience. Finally, interactive and immersive experiences such as virtual product tours or 360-degree product views give customers a more hands-on experience with the brand’s products.
SEO: Capturing Genuine Demand
Consumers use Search Engines when they are considering a purchase or researching a brand. Online marketplaces act as aggregators, so incorporating organic search into the digital strategy with conversational and trending terms offer great opportunities for promotion.
As consumers crave personalised experiences, location is the low-hanging fruit. Seasonal weather trends, local events, and holidays all impact your search traffic in various ways and present opportunities for location-based optimisation. Using AI-assisted technology, brands can identify these opportunities and evaluate topical keywords at scale in order to plan content campaigns and promotions that capitalise on the increased demand.
Video Marketing: Tomorrow’s SEO Content
The rise of video marketing is inexorable. Users spend more time on pages that include video as it is easier to consume and making sure that more of your web pages include video is paramount. This will not only boost rankings but also traffic and engagement.
The sophisticated and visually stunning nature of video content aligns perfectly with the high-end aesthetic that luxury brands are known for, and allows them to present their products in an immersive and engaging way. Whether through dramatic camera moves or atmospheric and artistic brand storytelling, video marketing enables luxury brands to effectively communicate their unique qualities and craftsmanship. Using keyword-rich and detailed markups provides you with more opportunities to rank in relevant searches and increase engagement with your videos.
Influencers: The cost-effective way to authentic content
Brands can expand their visibility and reach by working with macro-influencers (Those with over 200,000 followers). In 2023, influencer marketing can generate digital conversation by creating engaging and interactive content that can boost online conversions.
It is a highly cost-effective strategy as, according to Hootsuite, consumers are 2.4 times more likely to view user-generated content as brand made. By partnering with influencers with a global online presence, you can also enter and trial new markets quickly and cost-effectively.
The beginning of 2023 is the perfect time to make a step change for your brand. Embrace the latest trends, break the norms, and offer uniqueness to your audience. With Millennials and Generation Z becoming the leading luxury consumers, traditional marketing is less and less relevant.
So, are you leading the change?
If you are interested in elevating your strategy and reaching aspirational consumers through data and creativity, partnering with marketing specialists can be the best practice for all your luxury brand needs.
Get in touch with us now.