How Luxury Brands Target High Net Worth Audiences Online

October 29, 2013

Today’s luxury brand marketers are hard-pressed to find the right marketing technologies that will support the ways they reach and influence high net worth audiences. Most marketers already know what luxury consumers want, how they differ among mature markets vs. emerging markets (pg. 13), and what messages resonate most—the difficulty comes in finding ways to get the right message in front of this audience wherever they are online, precisely targeting only the people they care about.

According to the 2013 “Trends Report: Luxury Brands Online” from PM Digital and Experian, seventy-three percent of luxury brands run online display ads to reach audiences online, and this group running display ads accounts for ninety-seven percent of all traffic to luxury brand websites. The report suggests that the most digitally-successful luxury marketers not only apply cross-media strategies to deliver the greatest marketing results, but also deploy display advertising as a specific strategy to gain greater exposure.

While display advertising is clearly not a new media channel for luxury marketers, the ability to precisely target display ads only to high net worth audiences wherever they travel online remains an opportunity that is largely untapped. Check out the three examples below to see how luxury marketers apply distinct strategies and adjust messaging at each stage of the marketing funnel, guiding prospects from brand awareness through to purchases:

Top-Funnel | Build Brand Awareness | Ritz-Carlton

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At the top of the funnel, marketers aim to increase awareness of their brand, specific product lines, or product features to make prospects more comfortable and familiar with the brand. In luxury specifically, marketers often use this as a chance drive an emotional reaction, or instill values such as exclusivity, quality, or innovation. This display ad from Ritz-Carlton is very high-level, positioning itself as the hotel where you can really relax, as opposed to aggressively calling for the audience to check out its travel packages or directly suggesting they “buy now.” Brand awareness or recall can be measured through brand studies to measure top-funnel success; other metrics include lift in traffic from target audiences, targeted reach, and more.

Mid-Funnel | Increase Audience Engagement | Brooks Brothers

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The objective at the middle of the funnel is to prompt your audience to engage with and consume your content to further educate them about your products and drive interest. Brooks Brothers’ mid-funnel display ad is less concerned with branding and instead focuses on the value of a specific product, inviting the audience to peruse different non-iron shirt options. Mid-funnel success metrics include lift in visits, page views, target audience time on the website, and more.

Bottom-Funnel | Generate Leads and Drive Sales | Coach

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At the bottom of the funnel, marketers typically push for specific actions or conversions from their target audiences, or look to drive direct sales. Messaging at this stage becomes more sales intensive, with the prospects typically having already been exposed to the brand at some level. Coach’s display ad would be perfect for a prospect who has already visited the website and shown interest in Coach watches specifically, but hasn't yet converted or actually bought a watch. With “Coach Deals” as its call to action, and sales-heavy language about a “12% off” limited-time offer, and free shipping, this ad is meant for someone who knows the Coach brand, has shown interest, and now just needs a little extra push to dole out the cash.

Targeted display advertising enables luxury marketers to reach highly coveted high net worth audiences wherever they travel online, and be intelligent about which messaging is shown to them and when, in order efficiently guide buyers along their journey to a purchase.

This post was originally published on the Bizo blog. In July 2014, LinkedIn + Bizo joined forces to build the most robust B2B marketing platform available to marketers. To learn more, check out David Thacker, VP of Product at LinkedIn’s announcement blog post.

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