It is hard for new luxury brands to prove their worth and luxury status in a world where some of the most successful, well-integrated brands are those which come teeming with history and inherited gravitas. Luxury Business Sphere unpacks the implications and causes of this through a panel chaired by Alex West, offering insight and challenging panellists into discussion around how brands charter this new luxury landscape.
The summit addresses how new brands should approach luxury status, offering thought-provoking investigation into what it is that transforms something from an expensive but baseless enterprise into something whose name speaks for itself. This Luxury Business Sphere discussion boasts an impressive line-up of industry moguls such as Julia Marozzi from Bentley, William Asprey of William & Son, Paris Baloumis from Oceanco and Guy Newton from Clive Christian, who will be able to not only answer and discuss Alex West’s pertinent questions about chartering the new landscape of luxury, but also show us which questions beg answers.
Arguably, an element at the forefront of what luxury is, is craftsmanship. In other words, that the products be certifiably well-made. Given the blast of mass-production associated with modern industry, it’s not surprising that time-honoured brands are associated with an era of bespoke craftsmanship. But there are ways to establish quality that don’t borrow from history or family names – new brands should not feel stifled by the doctrine of proven history being synonymous with quality. In fact, realistically, a brand that depends too heavily on the guarantors of its past risks stagnitism or suggests an unwillingness to evolve.
Though it comes with its limitations, the notion of a more instant-history is on the come-up. “History”, in a brand-orientated sense, was vital prior to the online age. Brand-loyalty was one of the only ways to guarantee a recurring audience of consumers. However, with the overwhelming growth of social media and e-commerce, the perception of stability and reliability is now achievable at a much less tangible level. Though this is meaningless if not delivered, it allows small brands who intend to deliver a platform from which to prove themselves. Luxury Business Sphere’s panel discussion will be re-examining this notion of heritage, the nuances of trusting social media and the ever-developing drive for conscious consumerism.
The privatisation of Sotheby’s is a prime example of how a spike in a luxury brand’s reputation is highly influenceable by financial backing. This art auction platform has been backed by French-Israeli billionaire, Patrick Drahi, and just this prestige and display of trust has sent the brand soaring to the heights of its competitors, and higher yet, in the eyes of the consumer. Understanding this malleable public state-of-mind is vital in understanding patterns of consumerism and stabilizing brand awareness.
Another important outlook to consider is the impact of aesthetics on modern brands and the rate at which technology can distribute them. Ultimately, luxury brands with centuries of practice are increasingly challenged by the click-of-a-button approach to a brand’s public resonance.
History is no longer enough if brands aren’t producing equally arresting, appealing products and sharing them at the same rate as newer enterprises, often with millennial driven PR teams. But brands should worry less about just achieving visibility and scale, and more about how long they can sustain it, which is why Luxury Business Sphere’s exploration of luxury’s new landscape and its future is so relevant: it’s all about sustainability and longevity, or the potential for it.
Insights by Winston Chesterfield, interpreted by Luxury Business Sphere. To subscribe to Winston’s newsletter click here