LinkedIn Insights: 4 Luxury Buyer Personas in Asia Pacific

New research reveals three steps luxury goods and services’ marketers can take immediately

July 29, 2015

linkedin luxury personas

Luxury goods and services are a significant market worldwide, both in terms of the number of luxury buyers and the money they have to spend. The 350 million strong luxury goods buyers worldwide is an enormous revenue opportunity. What’s more, Hong Kong consumers spent close to $8 billion on luxury goods in 2014, while their counterparts in Singapore spent close to $4 billion.

Marketers must know their customers intimately to capitalize on this huge revenue opportunity. To help marketers gain a better understanding of luxury buyers, LinkedIn surveyed 498 of our members in Hong Kong and Singapore.

The result was four personas of luxury consumers that shed some light on their consumption habits:

  1. Aspirationals: Young professionals who are passionate about work-life balance and have their sights set on senior positions in the future.
  2. Travelistas: Professionals in director and above positions who have to travel often for work.
  3. High Net Worth Individuals (HNWIs): Director and above level professionals in the finance, legal or management consulting industries.
  4. Alphas: Professionals in managerial positions.

How do consumers conduct research?

New products and brand launches have significant effects on all the purchase decisions of all four personas. Among the four personas, Travelistas’ opinions are most likely to be swayed by product reviews. All four personas are active on social media. They use mobile phones to view and engage with content. The standout persona here, the Travelistas, are 6.9 times more connected to others on social media. They engage with content five times more than average users. This means that the Travelistas find their online peers’ opinions highly influential.

We believe that an increasingly effective way to market luxury goods is to produce engaging content about new products, targeting prospects as well as their peers. Publishing on various platforms and using a variety of content including long form posts, infographics, and SlideShare decks, are great ways to accomplish this.

What are luxury buyers looking for?

Eight in 10 luxury buyers rate high quality as the foremost feature they want in luxury products. Alphas and Aspirationals want their luxury brands to be internationally recognizable. They rate this feature higher than the uniqueness of the luxury products. However, HNWIs want something unique or bespoke to signal exclusivity.

The takeaway for marketers is that they should consider positioning their brands as high quality, while showcasing the brand heritage. Depending on their target customers, marketers should emphasize uniqueness or the international nature of their brand. Further, highlighting heritage and tradition of the luxury brand is important to achieve the right positioning in their online presence.

What are they spending on?

On average, HNWIs spent $13,000 on luxury goods and services in the past 12 months. Most of this spending is on clothes and shoes -- followed by watches, and bags. The majority of purchases occurred in stores. But we saw above that luxury buyers use mobile to consume content and product reviews. Thus, digital and mobile marketing serves an important function of informing the pre-purchase research and consideration.

How to best reach luxury consumers?

Thirty-six percent of Aspirationals and 44% of Travelistas are making their purchases online. Given the increased engagement online, this proportion is likely to increase in the future – which means cultivating an online presence is essential for luxury brands. Our research also found that half of Aspirationals buy luxury products to reward themselves for professional accomplishments, such as promotions, raises or new jobs. Similarly, 69% of Travelistas said they bought luxury products to celebrate birthdays or anniversaries. Marketers need to find the best way to leverage this information and reach their target audience effectively.

Here are the three steps we think luxury goods and services’ marketers can take immediately:

  1. Use online channels to communicate the emotions that your products elicit. Don’t just try to sell your prospective customers, but augment the in-store experience. This is best achieved by engaging prospects using great content.
  2. Create content pitched at all the people who influence the purchase decision, that is,. peers, friends, and family members.
  3. Remember that not all luxury consumers are the same. The four personas all look for specific things when researching products to purchase and have different triggers. Triggers such as promotions, birthdays, anniversaries, can be easily located by marketers on social media.

To dive deeper in luxury buyers personas in Asia Pacific, download this report, LinkedIn Insights Asia: Luxury Goods and Services.

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