New York—The rich may be different from you and me, but according to new consumer surveys even the wealthiest among us are concerned about the economy. And they likely may pare spending as well—not unlike similar reports about the general population.
In a survey with Unity Marketing, a research firm, the top 20% of consumers not only report turning more pessimistic over the future, they already have reduced spending. High-end spending recorded during the third quarter was down some 26% from second quarter, and off nearly 40% from same period last year, Unity reported.
Holiday: ‘Pull Out the Stops’
In fact, Pam Danziger, president at Unity Marketing, joined a growing chorus of marketing expects who believe heavy-duty discounting will be a must this holiday season in order to entice consumers to spend.
“Given affluents’ concerns about their financial status, retailers will have to pull out all the stops in terms of promotions and discounting this season to attract these shoppers, as the most important feature these affluents say they will look for when choosing a gift is to find it on sale or at a deep discount,” Danziger said.
Some of the biggest names in luxurygoods also have reported a downturn in spending. Earlier this month LVMH reported a slowdown in sales of fashion and leathergoods. This week, its rival Kering reported a drop as the upscaling of its Gucci brand stymied sales in various countries around the world—including China. In its quarterly report, Coach also reported a slowdown in sales in the United States where the luxury brand faces growing competition from Michael Kors, Kate Spade etc.
Although affluent consumers may be more cautious in their spending, they clearly make a distinction of a luxury retailer that does it right. The Luxury Institute’s survey of affluent consumers asked them about which retailer markets and services online and in store the best. The verdict? Almost unanimous: Neiman Marcus.
Check out these 10 articles to get a clearer picture of the key issues being discussed this week: