Is the luxury logo key to a product’s success?

Isaac Mostovicz writes that the quality of a brand's product can be more important than its logos...

Two recent studies have found that for many luxury consumers, (1) an item’s quality is more important than its use of obvious logos and (2) luxury brands charge more for items with more subtle logos.

The first article, “Subtle Signals of Inconspicuous Consumption,” appears in the current issue of Journal of Consumer Research, and suggests that luxury consumers prefer with “discreet markers, such as distinctive design or detailing,” than obvious brand logos. And the second study, “Signaling Status with Luxury Goods: The Role of Brand Prominence,” in this month’s Journal of Marketing, said “luxury brands charge more for ‘quieter’ items with subtle logo placement and discreet appeal.”

One of my favorite fashion brands, Bottega Veneta, really takes this to heart. Their goods are made with extraordinary craftsmanship and materials, and never display a company logo. The prices match the quality. For example, they offer a pair of flip-flops, or “basketwoven leather thong sandals“, for $396. Most people wear $10 flip-flops for a summer and get a new pair each year, whereas these Bottega Veneta basketwoven leather thong sandals will last a lifetime and will only improve with age.

Perhaps only a few people will notice this level of quality, in sandals or other garments, but those that do form a very exclusive club which many Thetas and Lambdas would aspire to be part of I think.

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