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As affluents increase spending on luxury products in the coming year, digital channels should expect to see more action. A January 2015 study by Ipsos MediaCT for Martini Media looked at mass affluents (incomes between $100,000 and $249,000) and hyperaffluents (incomes of $250,000 or more). Among those polled, 42% of US hyperaffluent luxury buyers intended to purchase more luxury items next year than this year, and one-third of mass affluents said the same.
Digital will likely play a large role during affluents’ path to purchase. When the study asked about the sources and channels they used for inspiration and researching luxury goods, digital was the most popular response among both groups, cited by 63% of mass affluents and 53% of hyperaffluents. Recommendations came in second for each group and were neck and neck with digital among hyperaffluents.
When they do research luxury products digitally, affluents choose PCs more than other devices. About two-thirds of mass affluents and nearly six in 10 hyperaffluents reported researching luxury products or prices via computer in the past 60 days. Fully 46% of respondents from each group researched via smartphone, while more than four in 10 mass affluents and 45% hyperaffluents used a tablet.
While PCs lead for luxury research, mobile usage is still impressive, and advertisers on such devices may stand a better chance at driving purchases among affluents than consumers as a whole. In March 2015 research by Experian Marketing Services, 17.4% of US affluents with a household income of $250,000-plus and 14.8% with a household income of $100,000-plus said they were likely to buy products seen advertised on their mobile phones, vs. 12.6% of total consumers. Affluents were also slightly more interested in seeing ads if it meant getting rewarded. However, they were less likely than the total population to receive ads on their mobile phones in general, suggesting that mobile marketers who are able to reach the cohort better make the interruption worth their while.
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