This is especially true when it involves the uppermost echelon of the market: 

The luxury sectors. Yet, the once clear distinction between fashion and luxury is becoming increasingly murky (in part thanks to the media’s categorization of those brands and synonymizing of these formerly distinct terms). as an example, Bloomberg recently published a piece of writing, entitled, “Luxury Brands Yield to Discounts Despite Push to remain Exclusive.” The photo corresponding with the title: A Tory Burch brick-and-mortar outpost. Is Tory Burch really a “luxury brand,” you ask? Many would argue that it absolutely isn’t.


This type of synonymous use of “luxury” and “high fashion” by consumers and therefore the media, alike, seems indicative of what Vincent Bastien, author of the posh Strategy: Break the principles of selling to create Luxury Brands, calls “confusion about what really makes a luxury product, a luxury brand or a luxury company.”

What is not obvious from the increasingly interchangeable uses of those terms is that there have traditionally been very distinct definitions want to distinguish between “fashion” and “luxury” brands and products. The difference between such brands and their offerings is “huge,” says Bastien, who was tasked within the mid-1970s with developing and implementing a replacement marketing strategy for brands, like Louis Vuitton, to enable them to expand their consumer bases while also allowing them to stay firmly within the posh sector.

1: That difference lies most centrally in their business models.

The Luxury vs. Fashion Strategy

The luxury brand model, for instance, is distinct from that of “fashion” and “premium” brands therein it aims to “create the very best brand value and pricing power by leveraging all intangible elements of singularity – i.e. time, heritage, country of origin, craftsmanship, man-made, small series, prestigious clients, etc.a Valentino bag or coat,” per Bastien. By mobilizing all of those intangible assets, a brand could also be positioned as largely incomparable to the other, even its rivals.

In addition to unmatched brand value and pricing power, the normal luxury brand endeavors to make long-selling products, as against best-selling products. Two examples set forth by Bastien: The Porsche 911, which debuted in 1964, and Chanel’s N°5 perfume, launched in 1921, both of which are still considered in demand today.

Chanel’s quilted 2.55 Flap bag, which made its debut in 1955, and Hermès’ Birkin and Kelly bags – which were first released in 1984 and therefore the 1930s, respectively – are additional examples, as they’re still a number of the foremost coveted handbags on the market many decades later.

The strategy of luxury brands is distinct from fashion brands, which employ a markedly different model. Here, says Bastien, “heritage, time, aren’t important; fashion sells by being fashionable, which is to mention, a really perishable value.” In other words, fashion brands largely thrive on the proliferation and adoption of seasonal trends, or as Bastien puts it, fashion brands believe their practice of “recreating the rhythm of the seasons.”

Is this to mention that fashion and luxury never overlap? No. “Luxury and fashion represent two worlds – both economically important, but still very different – and that they overlap only marginally (limited to haute couture),” per Bastien. “In these cases, success relies on a tandem arrangement, where you’ve got a brand (which covers the posh side) and a creator (who covers the style side), and therefore the best samples of this are Chanel and Karl Lagerfeld.”


2: Rule Number 14

The distinct positioning of luxury versus fashion brands is additionally to not say that the road between them isn’t further being blurred by brands, themselves, as they move away – in many cases begrudgingly – from a number of the principles that began in Bastien’s code.

For instance, rule # 14: don’t sell openly on the web.

According to Bastien, “Selling on the web is strictly hype in luxury marketing. Many marketers seem to think that if you are doing not sell on the web, you’re ‘out’. There, the excellence between luxury, fashion and premium strategy of prestige brands operating on the posh market is crucial. Internet sales are extremely well adapted to fashion and premium, but to not luxury. Self-proclaimed ‘web specialists’ fault the posh companies for not selling online, forgetting – or ignoring – that each one the ‘plusses’ of digital trade (instantaneity, permanent change and actualization, availability, accessibility, price reductions, automation of service, crowdsourcing, etc.) are huge ‘minuses’ for luxury.”

Nonetheless, this year, alone, a number of the market’s luxury stalwarts, including LVMH and Hermès, made significant strides within the digital sphere. LVMH, for one, unrolled a replacement platform, 24 Sevres, to sell its brands’ products, and Celine, which falls under the LVMH umbrella, will launch its own e-commerce site this month; its first raid online sales. As for Hermès, seemingly unwilling to ignore the many growth for “luxury” brands, consistent with studies, that comes with digital sales, the 180-year old brand increased its footprint by rolling out a replacement site. Do note: Its most in-demand bags, Kelly’s and Birkin’s, aren’t available purchasable online.

Chanel is, it seems, the sole one holding out most importantly during this regard, because the Karl Lagerfeld-helmed brand recently swore off selling garments and leather goods online entirely. Does that make it more of a “luxury” brand? consistent with Bastien’s strategy, yes.

But before we get before ourselves, it’s worth noting that “The Luxury Strategy” and its 24 anti-laws of selling were conceived of within the 1970’s, when e-commerce was (obviously) not live. thereupon in mind, there’s a worthwhile argument that today – when online sales


3: Are the foremost important and promising engine of growth,

with online sales of luxury goods will triple within the next 10 years – brands got to sell online in some capacity.

On the opposite hand, if Chanel is any indication, not selling online isn’t necessarily a death knell for a brand. Despite Chanel’s title of the last-standing outliers, the brand says that it’s not losing out when it involves its bottom line. consistent with Bruno Pavlov sky, Chanel’s president of fashion, that the label is reaching an increasingly young audience and boasts waiting lists for best-selling bags.

In short: In 2017, as a number of the industry’s most established luxury brands plan to modernize and reach even larger audiences, namely by way of the web, a number of the formerly set-in-stone differences are lessening. there’s still, however, a difference between the core models embodied by and therefore a number of the foremost significantly underlying values of luxury brands in contrast to fashion ones; Louis Vuitton and Tory Burch, for instance, aren’t on an equivalent plain.


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