Travel agents fail to gain the attention from affluent consumers when selling luxury holidays to the affluent market. They simply overlook the fact that 10% of the population are self-made millionaires who have little in common with the rich and famous as seen on TV.
When marketing Luxury Holidays to these affluent consumers Travel agents should be mindful of the fact the a significant percentage of affluent consumers are either ill informed or shy away from luxury brands, Hence the attitude and behaviour of the wealthy must be taken into account when selling luxury brands.
Agents need to educate their clients about the value of luxury brands they can easily afford in order to travel in style.
The perception that luxury brands are mainly for celebrities is created by the media. In differs in reality. The affluent are not celebrities, famous athletes or high flying businessmen. These groups are self-made millionaires. These groups form an essential market that remains untapped.
Few have ever heard of many luxury brands like Four Seasons, Ritz-Carton hotels, Intercontinental, Hilton, Accor, Hyatt, Starwood etc., Perhaps about 1% of wealthy people know these brands intimately. Most likely they believe that luxury brands are overrated and meant for elite seekers only.
It is a good idea to keep this in mind. People will maintain this perception unless they experience first-hand the difference. Promotions and special offers will lessen this perception and it is paramount that Travel agents and hotel operators get together to find a way to sell their products.
Take note that luxury brand marketing campaigns will go wrong if they don’t take into consideration that the majority of millionaires have had little or no exposure to luxury.
The big question remains unanswered. How do you educate them? How do we make these luxury brands more appealing?
Historically agents have viewed their role as enabling customers to save money. There is a catch 22 situation here. I think most agents can sell their luxury products if they are knowledgeable about their products. Understanding the different needs of individual customers is paramount to the industry. Affluent consumers do enjoy quality once they have experienced it.
Once travellers experience the difference in quality they will realise that luxury brands are not overrated and that they deliver value for money. Herein lies the secret.
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