In sales of luxury products, the choice of advertising message and form of its promotion is of particular importance. Despite the fact that a great number of brand product promotion methods exist as of today, many companies might find some of the promotion methods inappropriate for their effective product and service advertising. We speak here of products and services targeted at premium customers with income above average.
Difficulties in the choice of communication channel are due to the specificities of target audience. Speaking of a particular customer category, it is important to identify first the main characteristics of potential customers of the company’s brand premium product.
First of all, those are persons with upper-range income, and this means that they can afford buying luxury products. Second, those can be famous persons such as stars or celebrities. For them, buying a premium product is a manifestation of belonging to a ‘particular’ social class. In addition to this, the company needs to understand that it is virtually impossible to ‘force’ the customer making such a customer buy such a product.
On the other hand, we can state that a marketing strategy for elite products cannot be precisely targeted. The manufacturers of such a product should cover all of the population’s social layers to achieve brand recognition and creation of corporate image.
Marketing of elite products requires the company to use specific approaches which are not applied by manufacturers of consumer goods. However, this doesn’t mean that the company can’t use effectively all existing forms and components of marketing and communication mix.
Marketing and promotion of premium products are a hard task. In this field, a valid concept is to create value between the company and the buyer. Luxury products have parameters different from other goods, and therefore they should be provided with a clear and detailed characteristic, thus justifying their high price.
Manufacturers of luxury products attempt to limit the use of particular advertising tools. An example might be discounts and sell-off, as customers might suspect the company to be unable to sell its products from stock, or might associate it with deteriorating product quality or prestige.
The third component of the marketing mix – promotion – is quite specific as well for premium products. Manufacturers emphasize most often their products’ rarity, and so they use a limited number of sales channel and cooperate with so-called ‘exclusive distributors’.
Motivation factors influencing purchases of luxury products can be divided into two particular factors, namely:
- social and psychological factors,
- personal factors.
The first group of social and psychological factors includes those factors which are connected with the perception of people who possess premium items in society, or in combination with others’ opinion on such products and their owners. Personal factors are those factors motivating customers to buy premium products or services, which are connected with the own attitude toward this type of goods. Such customers have their own and subjective opinion and perception of such products’ value.
Social and psychological motivation factors include the following:
- This factor incites people to have their unique style in society. Luxury items are not affordable to all due to their high price, and a person buying such a product wants to prove that he stands on the top of the people around;
- Attraction of attention. Here, we speak of a person’s desire to be noticed by others. Wearing, using or just possessing luxury items, the person attracts greater attention on the part of others;
- Public use. This factor means that a person might use luxury items in public environment, expecting them to bring tangible or intangible benefits in the future. Public demonstration of ownership of luxury products might be a way to raise people’s trust, indicating that the owner of such items is a self-sufficient person;
- Success and well-being. This motivation factor means that a person owning luxury items want to show to others that he has enough funds to buy expensive and exclusive goods, thus creating an image of a rich and successful person, which can be used subsequently for entering elite groups and supporting career growth.
Personal motivation factors are the following:
- Personal growth. When a person owns expensive products, he feels himself confident, successful, and has other feelings which bring positive emotions;
- Very often, when a person can afford premium products, he wants to feel his belonging to a particular socio-economic group, for instance, to people with high income or the so-called ‘beautiful people’;
- Luxurious way of life. A person owning luxury products has an emotional feeling that he leads a way of life affordable only to rich and successful people. Imitation of such persons or the desire to become a part of a particular group might be a motivation for buying luxury products;
- A person possessing luxury products can feel his uniqueness, as he compares himself to other members of society which cannot afford buying such products;
- Own image. Possessing luxury products might lead to higher self-confidence, and might allow creating an own style in accordance with the person’s individual preferences.