5 Brand Strategies Your Small Business Can Learn from Luxury Brands

5 Brand Strategies Your Small Business Can Learn from Luxury Brands
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For years luxury brands have mesmerized us with highly desirable products and services. They inspire us to dream bigger and leave us desiring more. You can learn so much about attracting ideal clients from these dream building brands.

I had a client (let’s call the brand was called “Arnanda”) this client had on their list On the outside, it seemed that this client was a success but this client was struggling financially to reach more high-end clients and make a profit.

On the other hand, another one of my clients from Italy, who had worked as a consultant for Salvatore Ferragamo and Roberto Cavalii had understood the power of branding and leveraging luxury positioning. This client was able to scale their business fast and grow internationally leveraging some of the most powerful strategies that luxury brands use to drive up desire and demand.

You can create a unique positioning for your brand in the market, by applying some of these proven strategies to attract your ideal clients, earn more for your services and grow your business.

Your brand does not have to be super high-end for these strategies to work. It can be applied to almost any business to leverage a unique positioning. Here are five powerful strategies from the luxury market that you can use today:

#1 Rethink Your Category

The temptation may be strong to follow the positioning strategies of all the other experts in your niche. However, you can learn so much from French Luxury Bakery Ladurée. Though a bakery, Ladurée has taken on the style: look and feel, of a beauty and fashion brand. They even refer to the brand as Maison Ladurée, a term typically used in luxury fashion brands.

This gives the brand a distinct style and has helped positioned it as more than just a bakery, it offers a lifestyle experience, true Parisian luxury and beauty.

US brand Apple has used the same strategy to differentiate it’s brand from other technology brands. Apple is all about creativity and style and with the appointment of former Burberry CEO Angela Ahrendts, as it’s Vice President of Retail, the brand is showing a stronger commitment to making tech, very fashionable.

Think outside the box borrowing the style and positioning strategy of brands that inspire you outside of your category to create an experience that is distinct, new and unforgettable for your ideal clients. This type of approach will help you create a unique selling proposition and also enable you to charge a premium price for your services, as your clients will not be able to get the same experience anywhere else. Remember a luxury brand does not seek to be different from its competitors, it seeks to be different, full stop.

#2 Distinct Brand Personality

During my time in Milan as a consultant, it really gave me a closer look behind the scenes of how luxury fashion brands, which are all competing for high-end clients are not competing for the same client. Versace is focused on the rock n roll, free spirit, rebellious and sexually provocative women, while Giorgio Armani is focused on the sophisticated yet understated woman. The brands had different values and styles. One brand is focused on “the dress on the woman” and the other, “the woman in the dress”.

Within the same market, the two brands were able to capture two different types of buyers by developing a distinct brand DNA that was reflected through their advertising, product design and of course carefully selecting which celebrities were wearing their product (Lady Gaga for Versace and Kate Blanchett for Armani).

As an expert, crafting a distinct brand DNA is key to sending a clear message of who your ideal client is and subconscious signals for them to find you. Everyone has a type and your clients will be the people who identify with your brand style and values.

#3 Compelling Visuals

Every luxury brand knows that creating a unique brand experience and attracting the right clients, comes down to aesthetics and triggering the right emotions through high-impact visuals. We connect with and remember the things we see. This is why Luxury brands like Louis Vuitton and Dolce and Gabbana spend millions of dollars on in-store design, website, photography and video.

These are all touch points; the places and things that your ideal client will come in contact with when they encounter your brand. Luxury brand intelligently using codes within all the visual aspects of their brand to magnetize clients and create high perceived value.

These visuals turn non-essential products into must-haves. Have you ever noticed how no one is smiling in the Louis Vuitton print ads (go ahead and Google it)? That’s code for inaccessible and a level of unattainability that is part of the exclusive nature of luxury. There are ways of placing powerful emotional and sub-conscious codes that trigger the desire for your brand.

As an expert, imagine powerfully combining strong visuals with your very essential service of actually transforming people’s lives? You would be able to attract your clients with greater ease and create a more successful business.

One of my coaching clients recently posted this on our Facebook group about how her new brand image has impacted her business. It is worthwhile investing in creating a high-quality brand image because your ideal clients will be attracted to you.

#4 Craftsmanship and Exclusivity

Luxury brands pay attention to the details. What separates most high-end brands from the mass market is that the products are high quality, at times handmade by highly-skilled artisans and even customized to meet the client’s individual expectations.

In addition to being highly crafted, these brands create a “high lust factor” by limiting supply. Take Hermes for instance, you can’t just waltz into the store and buy a Birkin Bag, you need to be offered one by your sales rep after making a few other purchases in the store. You need to be a client and at times there is a six-month waiting list for their products.

In the coaching industry, while you are offering a service, there is an opportunity to create a differentiated experience through your product development by making some services very high touch and very exclusive. It is a good idea to create products that larger groups of people get access, so that many people get to know you and your work, but also create referral only or very exclusive high-end products that are available for a limited time or by application only.

#5 Unusual Partnership

Why on earth would luxury brands like Balmain, Kenzo and Alexander Wang collaborate with a fast fashion company like H & M? This is a strategy that many luxury brands have found useful for two reasons; to stay relevant and to reach younger upcoming buyers of luxury.

You see more than any other industry, luxury brands look to the future. Who will be buying our products in 5 or even 10 years and start creating the exposure to the brand, so that these new buyers can move through the funnel of their more high-end lines. It’s like wetting their appetite, because once you go luxury you never go back.

I helped a luxury award-winning hotel create a strategic partnership with a luxury jewelry company because they were serving the same clients even though they were operating in different industries.

As an expert, you can find unusual collaborations that can create maximum exposure for your brand to reach your ideal clients and the people who will become your client in the future. Try to think outside of the box and think about other brands outside your own industry that your clients are using or following, and build new usual relationships that both you and your partners can benefit from.

If you would like to learn more on how to use compelling luxury strategies to get more high-end clients, watch my free masterclass video training, "Create Your High-end Brand Using These 5 Luxury Brand Strategies."

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