There has arguably been no stronger stigma attached to affluence than in the current political and economic climate. Tax rates are said to be unbalanced, income is allegedly too concentrated and the Occupy Wall Street movement is just starting to vacate. It is reasonable to question the concept of affluent marketing. But if you're going to question the concept, make sure you answer with an unqualified "yes."
We are often asked what role social networking plays in the lives of Affluent Americans-are they on Facebook? Twitter? If so, how much time do Affluents spend on these sites? Generally speaking, those who ask are skeptical-surely the Affluent, they figure, are too busy or too old-school to spend much time with online social networks. Our data suggest that Affluents have been socially networking with gusto for several years, and that this is one of many areas where popular notions of Affluent lives are shaped by stereotypes and misconceptions.
Now that we're all experts at-or, at least, veterans of-navigating a real-life troubled economy, we can conclude with fairly decent certainty that 1) things will eventually get better, and 2) the ultra affluent will likely remain so. For those who work in the luxury space, these two factors shouldn't only confirm what they've learned along the way, they should also act as rules of the road going forward-guiding their approach to brand marketing and management in light of an unpredictable economy.
The U.S. bridal industry is flat. According to U.S. census data, the number of weddings has remained relatively unchanged for the past 25 years at between 2.1-2.4 million. However, in China, the bridal industry is booming. According to David Liu, CEO and cofounder of The Knot in New York, in 2010, over 10 million weddings took place-- five times as many as in the U.S.