“But luxury is a different beast – one that celebrates the principle of exclusivity and an ideal that not every consumer can or should be part of a brand’s clientele. The French dominate luxury because they have a culture that is comfortable with artistic development and one entirely at ease with the idea of excluding most to include the few.”
Mark Ritson is an associate Professor of marketing and an expert on branding.
The concept of Luxury does not come from democratic societies. The notion of a luxury product emerges from societies that are very divided between those who “have” and “have not”. The definition of luxury is something that is rare, unique and not for everyone. This makes the idea of exclusivity, a powerful brand element. A true American brand, in the luxury category, might be Tiffanys, or, perhaps a Cadillac. Americans have been buying European luxury products for a long time, but its no mistake that the US has not created too many of them. The rare exception might be the APPLE computer which stands worldwide as a luxury product in the high tech sector. Democracies don’t create brands, the old world idea of craftsmanship, unique materials, history and quality though not unheard of in America, have to take a second position to the worldwide power of a brand like a Louis Vuitton. For the luxury marketer, the concept that is provided by a European luxury brand, is worth reviewing.
- The craftsmanship and heritage of quality that is born in the product
- Family or central manufacturing process that creates continuity in the supply chain
- Devotion to a singular ideal of the clients and service
- Art and Commerce are integrated
- Materials and Design are focused on Quality and Perfection