Comfortably Well-Off Consumers are Vital to Luxury Marketers

North America ranks number one in the world in terms of total high-net-worth individuals and the size of their financial assets, according to a recently published report. 

“The high-net-worth market, totaling 3.2 million people in North America, are a small but influential market segment for ultra high-end luxury marketers that sell goods and services only the truly rich can afford,” explains Pam Danziger, president of Unity Marketing. “But today’s American luxury market is far broader and more diverse than just the rich.”

The high-net-worth market made up of 9.5 million people worldwide who hold more than $1 million in assets, according to the “World Wealth Report,” compiled by Merrill Lynch and Capgemini Group.

However, Danziger said that in addition to the wealthy, companies that offer luxury services also target high-income earners.

“High-income consumers, especially those 18 million households that are comfortably well-off with incomes from $100,000 to $249,000, are the prime target market for many of the leading luxury brands and retailers today.” 

Danziger also contends that a luxury lifestyle is also attainable to people with more modest levels of income because of an increased availability of luxury goods and services and a trend toward fractional ownership.

“While the high-net-worth consumer market is an important one, most luxury marketers’ success today is directly related to how well they satisfy the luxury cravings of the comfortably well-off shoppers in their midst,” Danziger explains. “That is the focus of Unity Marketing’s latest study on the buying habits of luxury consumers published in The Luxury Report 2007.” 

Unity Marketing’s, “Luxury Report 2007 – The Ultimate Guide to the Luxury Consumer Market,” is luxury marketers’ definitive guide to the U.S. luxury consumer marketplace. It provides details about what luxury consumers bought, how much they spent, where they made their purchases, and in certain categories, the luxury brands they purchased. The report tracks the leading trends in the luxury market from 2005 and 2006. 

Danziger says, “The Luxury Report 2007 is based upon surveys of more than 4,000 luxury consumers with an average household income of $149,800 and age 43.1 years. It provides a wealth of information for luxury marketers who must make business decisions based upon facts about the luxury consumer market, not beliefs, assumptions or fantasies.”   

The research study found that in 2006 American affluent consumers continued to spend significant amounts of money indulging in luxury goods and services. The typical luxury consumer’s spending on luxuries rose 6.6 percent to reach $56,065, following an increase of 3.8 percent in spending in 2005. 

The Luxury Report 2007 also details the fastest growing categories in the luxury market and provides data about what influences the consumers most in terms of buying products in the category, such as style and design; product or design brand; store where the purchase was made, etc. 

Sample pages from the Luxury Report 2007 describing the number of affluent households by income levels are available on this Unity Marketing’s Web site.