Gen Y wants personal and specific luxury

Isaac Mostovicz writes...

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scenarioDNA, a research and branding consultancy based in New York, published a very interesting trend report ‘Redefining Luxury’ earlier this month.

The basic premise: for Generation Y (the cohort born after Generation X, now in their mid-twenties or younger) to choose a given product, it really needs to captivate. Just being tied to a well-known brand won’t be enough, because with more information and the tools to hunt and find what they want, Gen Y are less likely to stick with a name.

The article discusses how young people long for rare moments and special, unique experiences. As Gen Y grew up in McMansions, luxury brands became increasingly ubiquitous at the expense of originality and exclusivity. Now young people have fractured expectations for luxury.

This theme resonates with an article in the FT from earlier this month by Michael Schrage, “Customers want loyalty not perfection.” Marketers and brand managers are upset that consumers today are “brand sluts” who seek immediate gratification without any loyalty. But really “established brands have cheated on and betrayed their most loyal customers” as they’ve charged more and more for less and less and added complexity rather than value to their products.

Once again we’re reminded that unique experiences and value worth the premium are what keep people coming back to the brands they trust.

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