Creativity, Intuition, Client Relations – these were the key words at the Paris Luxury Summit co-organised by CB News and Publicis Media yesterday. And naturally technology was at the heart of discussions, particularly when talking about client relations, currently one of the major issues in the world of luxury. It’s a sign of the times…debates are now focussing once again on the human dimension. Because while new technology may help do things better, it has still not replaced man. The human touch is back with a vengeance!
Wine, perfume, watches…whatever the sector, a luxury brand has to be distinctive. So distinctive that you could say that luxury is evident by absence. How can this absence be defined? For some, it would be the taste of a Château Latour, or a Romanée Conti, or perhaps the sound of a Ferrari’s engine. For others, it could simply be the fact of not possessing that highly desired luxury item, that coveted status symbol that offers societal recognition. It could even be a combination of the two, such as the taste of a great wine and the recognition and status that goes with it. And for new generations? The luxury item is no longer valued for itself but for the experience that it can offer. Although marketing studies are carried out in all industries to understand how best to seduce the consumer, with luxury it’s different; luxury is also down to intuition. It is through intuition that you will succeed in creating something unique, in putting your finger on that tiny detail that makes all the difference. And that tiny detail can just as well be found in a message as in the creation or manufacture of a product.
“Not seeking to please everyone is essential,” stressed Nicolas Degennes, Artistic Director at Parfums Givenchy. “To want to please everyone is to no longer be distinctive.” Working on a brand profile in 2017 is also about asking yourself just how far the brand can go in its distinctiveness and its creativity. “Don’t seek to seduce, but to give,” as Jean-Claude Ellena, the exclusive nose of Hermès so rightly says. To go for the easy option and allow the brand to fall into the trap of seduction would be a big mistake. Our role is to support brands in going further, to help them offer the greatest of gifts: that of giving and sharing. Yes, that is what constitutes real luxury today!