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‘Luxury Shame’ Stands in the Way of the Luxury Market’s Recovery

‘Luxury Shame’ Stands in the Way of the Luxury Market’s Recovery

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Here’s the latest from WSJ:

“Guilt has really increased in the last year,” says Martin Lindstrom, a brand strategist and author of “Buyology: Truth and Lies About Why We Buy.” “It can hamper any other good feelings” about shopping, he says.

Now some luxury brands are emphasizing marketing tactics that they hope will push away the guilt and reboot consumers’ desire to spend. That can mean touting a special justification for splurging—profits are channeled to a charity, for instance—or offering novel shopping experiences that can make people forget their guilt.

“It used to be about keeping up with the Joneses, and now it’s about outsaving the Joneses,” says Alexis Maybank, the co-founder of Gilt Groupe, which organizes online, by-invitation-only 36-hour sales of high-end merchandise from labels such as Burberry and Matthew Williamson. “We need to encourage people to get excited about fashion.” (The double entendre in her company’s name dates from an era—2007—when the guilt that went with shopping was far less disruptive.)

– from WSJ