Layering Effect – 7 Times Sales Spree

Fragrance is an extremely interesting and evolving industry when seen in perspective of Middle East enthralling economic pattern. Arab consumers take fragrances not as a cosmetic accessory but an everyday ritual. A traditional practice in the Middle East fragrance lovers is called “Layering Effect” where they wear around 3-7 different fragrances at a time. Main reason for this layering technique is to create his or her own recipe of fragrance that cannot be revealed or discovered by anyone. This not only entices fragrance buyers to experiment but also impacts big way to the innovation and versatility of the Arabian fragrance industry. Not to mention its effects on the ambitious sales numbers of the Middle Eastern market.

Middle Eastern industry has taken a sharp turn towards niche and luxury fragrances in the last decade. Consumer have gone selective so as the brands. I am not aware of any mainstream or niche fragrance brand globally who have not appreciated the oriental side of the scent family. Comparison, evaluation, mix and match of these western and eastern brands will surely create an extraordinary learning experience not only for the curators but also fir the fragrance consumers.

As fragrances are one of the most personal indulgence items as a category, it does have a few distinctive perimeters in terms of culture, usage, environment, social values and traditions. European fragrances are more lighter, floral and fresher where Middle Eastern fragrances tend to be more stronger, oriental and long lasting. For instance, if a person is wearing a Middle Eastern fragrance, the whiff can be felt in the radius of 3-10 mtrs depending on how strong the fragrance is.

Top 10 Lessons From The COVID-19 Crisis

What are some lessons that luxury brands can learn from the global pandemic? There are 10 that they can adopt in order to position themselves better as the world embarks on the road to recovery.

or the record, the international luxury industry was not at its triumph pre-COVID-19. A few of the top sectors contributors of the luxury economy globally are Fashion, Real Estate, Automotive, Hospitality, Jewellery, Health & Fitness, F&B, Travel, and Health. We all witnessed the collapse of luxury giants in the shape of filling bankruptcies/liquidations since 2017 and earlier. Let me name a few of the fashion brands that took hit pre-COVID, like BCBG Max Azria, Claire’s Stores, Nine West, Rockport Group, Diesel, Roberto Cavalli, Sonia Rykiel, Barneys New York, Forever 21 and so on…

Luxury consumers and specific connoisseurs of luxury were transmitting the signals of divergence and disparity in the form of negative growth of the international luxury market. It all converged into a massive and collective downfall when COVID-19 swapped all sectors, continents, economies, humans, and whatnot. In non-idealistic scenarios, we are not able to preempt global disasters such as COVID-19 but market trends, consumer tastes, economic fluctuations, brand PLC’s and evolution of human choices could have been predicted to some extent if not holistically.

Luxury pundits like Bain & Co. estimate that this year, the personal luxury goods market could contract 20 per cent to 35 per cent worldwide. McKinsey’s recent report predicts luxury sales for this year’s spring season are as much as 70 per cent lower than last year since we all are challenged to be in person at stores and that is a serious dent in the natural form of luxury shopping.

There must be an oversight, negligence, lack of innovation, ignorance of the inferences, and/or shying away from the clear and obvious signs of transformation. Let’s make an effort to reflect on what could have been done and what we all as an industry could learn from at least the last 12-15 months, if not beyond.

Here are the top 10 lessons luxury brands can learn from the COVID-19 crisis.


Incessant Innovation

We must have a continuous stream of innovation within our luxury offerings. This is the most unwavering characteristic of a brand that keep their customers and stakeholder intact even in crises.

Technology Catalyst

Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Virtual reality (VR) are two of the many technological milestones luxury brands can benefit from if utilised from the human perspective. Most luxury brands are still using these assets as push strategy rather than investing in the brand and turning tech into the catalyst of a pull strategy.

Personalisation Space

This is the most pivotal aspect of a luxury brand that distinguishes it from the mass market or premium brand. This past year has proven again that luxury brands that have already created a personalised space with their top customers have survived far well than customer-distant brands.



Commercialism is the inverse of luxury especially when we face a crisis of this magnitude. Not only that it costs more to be commercial but also creates a distorting message towards its target market that results in a lack of trust and diminishes the brand loyalty bond.


Absolute Diversification

Not only in the product/ service offering but also in the distribution channels including target market and communication strategies; diversification has been one of the top salvage techniques of major luxury brands when a brand’s customer profiles shrink significantly.


Direct Communication

Social media has been at the forefront of our attention even for the luxury segment. The more we are direct with our current and potential customers, the more the chances that we can build trust. Adopting the latest means of communication including social media beyond product and brand-centric communication will surely set a luxury brand apart from the crowd.


Nationalisation with Internationalisation

It’s a core ingredient for a luxury brand to internationalise but a crisis like COVID-19 has taught us to improvise on the national front as well. Without marginalising the national trade gains such as foreign currency and rise in exports, luxury brands have learned the lesson hard way to invest into the local markets with the same zest and zeal within as well if not more than into international.


Social Consciousness & Inclusiveness

Social consciousness with community responsibility is the pillars on which any brand builds its character and trust, more so being a luxury brand. Calamities and disasters define us who we are and what we stand for. Luxury is no more the business of exclusiveness when the times are tough, and economies are shrinking. Inclusiveness is the way forward where support is extended across all verticals of business involved in the chain of economic recovery.


Sensibly Sustainable

It’s no more a fashion to be sustainable, [rather luxury brands need to address] the current global environmental challenges. Luxury brands must lead from the front to create a sustainable greener and cleaner environment for the current and future generations. Being climate-conscious can help us tremendously to avoid several global disasters in the making or even keep them away or decrease the intensity.



Luxury brands often ignore the real values of humanity that combine us as humans with care, feelings, and the urge to help and support each other when needed. Future luxury brands will be applauded and appreciated not because of their glitz and glamour but how they stood behind humanity across all colours, genders, languages, cultures, and religious affiliations.


There could be more verticals of learning depending on the nature of business and its core business objectives. The above pointers are tilted towards a vast range of cross-sectional luxury brands and services across the globe as base principal ground rules of the futuristic luxury environment.

Contributed by Shahzad HAIDER, New York based Transformation Consultant – The Future of Luxury



Luxury brands must conduct Brand Health Check (BHC) constantly to evaluate their current status in the perspective of the present and future market trends. BHC is an instrumental tool to evaluate and understand the current status of the brand and its capacity to manage expectations of the futuristic luxury market regionally and internationally. The BHC should be conducted by a futuristic luxury marketing expert online or in-person depending on the need and capacity of the brand.

The Business of luxury (BOL) is turning into a critical phase as commercialism is departing and exclusivity is becoming the new source of sustainable future of luxury. The BOL has already surpassed the prerequisites such as service, quality, price, and prestige and now proceeding with the new dynamics of non-branding that involves personalization, exclusivity, and technology. The modern jargon of personalization that transforms an experience into an expression is the innovative and new world order of the luxury kingdom. Connoisseurs of luxury around the globe are intelligently evaluating the brand experience but surely connect with the brand that satisfies their self-expression. The BOL has its unique positioning with pleasure, prestige, and profitability.

In today’s rapidly changing environment, it’s critical for a luxury brand custodian to evaluate if the brand is futuristic and to which extent it can serve the expectation of futurist consumers.

We have articulated the following 7 checkpoints to evaluate if your Luxury Brand is FUTURISTIC?

CHECKPOINT – 1 – Brand Name & Identity

We are not suggesting changing the name of your existing brand or its identity, but a little tweak can surely turn your brand name and its look and feel into more modern and futuristic. If your brand is too centric to local or regional understating, see if you can twist this towards international understanding. Long brand names are not problematic if they serve the purpose of reflecting the essence of your brand. Clarity is indeed far more crucial than style.

CHECKPOINT – 2 – Taglines & Brand Statement

Your tag line should be able to serve as the functional descriptor of your brand. Please evaluate if your brand statement or tagline depicts its core nature of the business. Smart, elegant but to the point tag line will be the first short descriptor of the essence of your brand that must sound luxurious, futuristic, and international.

Furthermore, the tagline should have the capacity to transform and grow into a phrase/ slogan that a brand can carry as a symbol of recognition and pride in the foreseeable future.

CHECKPOINT – 3 – Website Theme & Tech

This is the first storytelling of your brand without you being there. Let’s see if this URL of your brand accomplishes the objective of your brand towards your internal, external, current, and protentional customers.

The other crucial component is how tech-savvy and modern is your webpage is? Is it equipped with AI (Artificial intelligence), cookies technology, and viewer’s interests tracking to some extent? How personalized this digital space is to maneuver in the areas of interest of the browser. With minimalistic text, videos and pictures should be able to steer the entire web experience to a luxurious path. The uncomplicated flow of valuable information in line with exclusive and sort after target audience without any clutter is surely a treat for the visitor.

CHECKPOINT – 4- Are You The Brand?

What correlation do you have with your brand? Futuristic luxury brands are not independent of their custodians, in fact, your brand should be the extension of you. It must transcend your true personality as a living brand. You are the most valuable asset your brand has, and this fact must be conveyed in the most authentic, realistic, and simple form of storytelling.

Connoisseurs of luxury are equally interested in the creator of the brand as they are keen on the brand. The credibility of the custodian authenticates and strengthens the connection between the consumer and the luxury brand.

CHECKPOINT – 5 – Social Media Space

Does your social media tell the story of what your brand is about and what you believe in? Do you engage in exclusive and “By invitation only” interactions with the chosen few those matter to your brand? Social media space not only should serve as a positioning statement but also act as an extension of your luxurious branding. Continuous interaction with the regional and international target audience with severe the real purpose of the social media space. One way communication is becoming redundant day by day. Exclusive yet reachable to a select few will improve the quality of your audience.

One last but extremely crucial point, the number does not matter at all. What matters is the quality of the audience and how you are connected to them.

CHECKPOINT – 6 – Speaking Your Language

How international is your brand depends on how many languages your brand speaks and how important for your brand to be multilinguistic?

Being internationally recognized and connected has become one of the core attributes of a distinctive futuristic luxury brand. Communicating internationally will improvise your brand ethos and philosophy. This is paramount to any luxury brand that operates internationally. Understanding and valuing global culture and regional customarily sensitivities is the key to get acquainted with the crème de la crème of the desired market.

CHECKPOINT – 7 – PR – Be in the News for the News

What kind of media do you choose to talk to and with what objective? Do you have real news to share, or you are just in the news for the sake of it?

Futuristic luxury brands must create, if not already possess, an authentic innovative driven news that serves the purpose of your target audience to some extent if not entirely. Paid PR and advertorials are done and dusted and for few creative revolutionary brands, even PR agencies are obsolete. Your luxury brand should have the strength and the unique ability that creates the right pull for the brand and its story rather than requires a push from a paid pusher.

Once the above 7 step evolution is done, try jotting down a summary of the brand’s futuristic capacity where a brief brand analysis with identification of improving areas should be documented. The objective of the evaluation is not to restructure the brand from its roots but to transform the brand into futuristic luxury without compromising on the DNA and ideology of the brand.

Futuristic transformation is the key success factor for any luxury brand that inspires to be global and appreciated for its core values. Remember, this is a continuous process and must be exercised at regular intervals depending on the nature and business objectives of the luxury brand.


My last piece that discussed “Head of Future Transformation” exposed our current state of stagnancy across luxury branding and positioning.

Hate to repeat the rhetoric of pessimism that is evidently clouded across creative thinking and specially consumer centric thought process. Just to recap, my point of view is; that these so-called luxury brands are stuck in the marketing jargons of the past decade and have failed miserably to innovate. Additionally, how branding & communication strategies have lagged far behind futuristic consumer expectations who suffered obsolete marketing techniques repeatedly.

I strongly believe that ideas, strategies, concepts etc. could be amazing. But it all boils down to how we actually implement them. Here is a 3-prong strategy that should lead us to transformation of futuristic luxury brand strategy, but of course it all depends on how well we implement and execute it.


Get to know the current status of the brand and to what extent it is ready for the future, especially with the swift changes in the luxury industry. This is as exciting as the challenging. Reason being that you as brand owner or custodian should not be involved at this stage. The best way is to obtain assistance from a modern UpToDate luxury branding consultant or image strategist. This professional must have the capacity to share views whilst also rendering a critical analysis of the brand. The brand owner should be very clear and have a reasoning on each pointer as to why or why not your brand is luxe future savvy. This should include a brand parity breakdown within the same or similar luxury industry. The futuristic evaluation will reidentify the tasteful target market and its shift in terms of personality traits such as: education, travel, information exposure, financial source, and life cycle. At the end, revisiting the entire brand book and ticking all checkpoints as how modern and futuristically equipped each one is.


Once we have progressed from the first phase, we advance to the strategy phase where the luxury brand transformation is devised. At this stage, involvement of the brand owner/ custodian is pivotal. No one can translate the brand ethos better than the brand owner/creator. Strategy is formulated in the most pragmatic manner so that the transformation is engineered in such a manner that change is perceived as brand futuristic shift rather than an average and ordinary brand shift. For my projects, I have created a detailed guidebook that includes sessions with top management, implementation stages, change management protocols, execution process, transformation stages, timelines, and budgeting etc. The strategy guidelines are subject to the kind of brand and business we are in. The entire process is planned in a way as if we are changing tracks of the train without reducing its speed.


This surely is a show time phase, where all evaluations, planning, and strategy transforms into reality. A symphony of inclusiveness, not exclusiveness. From top to middle and lower, teams must be aligned to embrace the transformational change towards the now attainable future. Additionally, your target audience, current and potential customers are the core component of this exciting futurists transition. A luxury brand should not be reluctant to shift its customer profile if the brand image is being perceived outdated in lieu of its target audience. Futuristic luxury brands always look for challenging customer profile that thrashes creative boundaries and keep the brand alive and vibrant. The transformation to future should echo the same feel and sense within your internal and external customers.

This three-prong strategy must be backed by Post Transformation Analysis and a further recommendation report.

Post Transformation Analysis is a summary of the brand’s futuristic capacity in the form of Brand’s White Paper. White paper report of the brand will be elaborating, detailing, and explaining the rationale of transformation. This will include your brand’s potential and milestones that should be achieved after the completion of the transformation.

A Recommendation Report will further elaborate critical steps that need to be taken by the luxury brand in order to get ready for the next phase of futuristic transformation as it’s a continuous process like learning.

As a futuristic luxury brand, we can’t be stagnant at any point, we must learn from the past, analyze and reflect on the present, predict and preempt the FUTURE.


We’re riding in a rollercoaster of global business and political termoil. As we are aware of the famous three types of adaptations: Behavioral, Physiological and Structural, we occasionally need a combination of two. I believe with the series of events for the last few quarters, we are in need of all three and may be more…

Unfortunately, we don’t have the luxury of a crystal ball to predict the future nor the liberty of time to prepare for it. Simultaneously, we aren’t expected to be ignorant and not sense what’s coming especially when the size and magnitude of the problem is as huge as we experienced so far. This challenge encompasses the entire globe across all verticals of our lives irrespective of geographical, economical and social affiliations.

Having said this, without diminishing the catastrophic effects of the pandemic, let’s focus on what we can and can’t do. Historically, global disasters such as COVID-19 are mostly managed by preventive strategies, not preemptive. What about the highest net worth businesses around us and the lives associated with them? Not to forget, the spillover effect of the chain reaction that moves the cycle of economy. We all are somehow linked to each other economically if not emotionally. In the beginning, I mentioned adaptation traits of humanity and what we can and can’t manage. In a pandemic like this we can only adopt and take preventive measures but for the change in the economic dynamics especially for the global Luxury Industry, we must be in the preemptive mode.

The fact of the matter is, most of the international luxury brands and services are still looking in the back-view mirror. My prior articles described futuristic consumer advancement with the help of technology and knowledge backed by the financial capacity is so enthralling that brands engagement strategies fall short on many fronts. I would not like to overemphasize this fact by mentioning the list of collapsed luxury giants pre and post COVID. Although, it was oversimplified to blame global crisis.

Since the board rooms of international luxury brands are still on the revolving chair spinning around the obsolete copy paste jargons of early 5 years of 21st century as in: videos, social media, influencers and online spaces are few of the overdone techniques of the past that are so relevant to our CMO’s & DM’s till date.

Luxury brands need disruptors that have the potential not only to challenge the stereo type branding myths from “Brand experience” to “cell phone fame” but also have the capacity to formulate strategies that adhere to futuristic consumers. One major disruptor of the century we all know till date is Steve Jobs who’s innovated strategies of engaging futuristic market and satisfy the market demand that surely exceeds expectations. Most of the recent marketing gurus are just modifiers, not marketing innovators or transformers.

When it comes to luxury designer brands and services, we need smart solutions that transform current brands to futuristic brands that enabled brand DNA to resonate with futuristic clientele and surpass consumer expectations. The brand should tell the story of the brand aficionado more than the brand itself. The future brands are not about the experience but the expression, not the storyteller of the brand but personifying its admirer. Brands of the future don’t have to be struggled with superiority but to strive for personalization.

In view of above and what state of the industry is, we definitely are in dire need of “Future Transformation” specialists who can help us sail to other side of change; 2021 and beyond. These transformers have the potential to play a pivotal role in salvaging the drifting luxury industry, get us rid from old-fashioned marketing strategies, and rejuvenate the luxury industry with futuristic and informed direction.

The process of Future Transformation is a three phase plan; 1- Brand’s Futuristic Evaluation – Get to know the current status of the brand and what extent it is ready for the future; 2- Transformation Guidelines – A detailed guidebook with changes required, execution process, transformation stages, timelines, and budgeting; 3 – Transformation Implementation & Execution – Long term strategic action-oriented project, based on KPI’s, and evaluation intervals with time timelines.

I need a “Head of Transformation” for my luxury brand, what’s your take?

A Mandatory Component Of Advancement

Top International luxury corporates & brands are falling apart in acceptance of overlooking the paradigm shift of futuristic consumers. The recent pandemic has just given them a petite face saving. This is evidently a natural evolution from brand to consumer centric luxury profiling.

The real challenge, as well as an epitome of opportunity, lies within designer brands and bespoke services that gratify personalization. Their sheer choice of turn will predict their fate as they must choose between now or newness. Now is already gone as we live in it. The only intelligent option for niche is newness, futuristic and what is ahead of us. With the current thread of events in the last few quarters, less is more when comes to planning and forecasting unfortunately.

Luxury and niche brand leaders have their own individual trait, style, taste and this uniqueness defines and represents them. Such distinctive expertise are the result of their in depth industry knowledge, well round experience, minute observation and brave choice of style sense. Without any extended exaggeration, more often, the wealth of knowledge and learning these masterminds possesses surpass their brand kaleidoscope. They tend to limit their creative potential within the radius of the brand architecture. I believe this is the time to unlock the boundaries and reach out to complementing thought processes for inclusive advancement.

We have an extraordinary opportunity to create a futuristic luxury environment if we opt the path of inclusiveness. This does not mean to compromise or get inspired by your fellow niche brand philosophy, but to improvise on your own unique offering by connecting the chain in the process of exploring the right value for your brand and service. This also does not mean getting into further competition or sharing the piece of the cake but baking the cake to perfection with the help of the ultimate ultra-modern oven. The recipe and the presentation is exclusively yours only at the end. Inclusiveness will only add up to your brand story to get the true value from the connoisseur of luxury.

Designers brands have the agility to maneuver rather precipitously as compared to large commercial brands and this characteristic is the key to adopt to the new rules of game. When designer brands operate with inclusive strategic approach, their respective strengths turn in to the air under the wings. Challenges faced with current market pitfalls can be tackled by conclusive knowledge and experience that was limited to a single brand progression earlier.

This inclusive approach does not have to be a permanent or the only mode of advancement. We can adopt to our independent brand eco system once we can afford it as a system of its own with the industry. We were and we are dependent on each other anyways; its only now that we have to share more knowledge to lift each other and share our respective experience for the advancement into the new luxurious era of inclusiveness.


Personalized luxury brands have been creating engagements with their respective audience through various forms of communication. By invitation only events, exclusive launch previews, A -lister fashion shows, private dinners and celebrity parties were top priority when it comes to strengthening relationship with their current and potential client base.

What options are we left with at this point of time having COVID 19 roaring across the globe? Realistically, none of the above.

Fact of the matter is, infections are on the rise as well as deaths with alarms of second and third wave in the coming quarters of 2020 and even 2021. International economic scenario is as grim as one could imagine.

I have encountered 2 thought processes in the recent past, one that has gone under the woods and waiting for the storm of this pandemic to pass. Then they will come out and see what is left behind after this stormy weather and continue from where it paused and continue with what this pandemic driven economy spared.

The other thought process is to embrace, adopt and innovate new strategies and create opportunities within these challenges. They are the one who are contemplating, researching and inventing fast forward approaches for intelligent luxury brands of the future.

As a student of future of luxury, I obviously firmly believe in the second thought process. Futuristic leaders must invent strategic initiatives for luxury brands and services seeking innovative solutions of engagements. New dynamics of business are emerging, we must put our creative hats on. Its already too late to give a sendoff to obsolete marketing techniques that are being used infinite number of times with repeated copy pastes by top acclaimed luxury brands & agencies internationally.

In my previous, pre covid-19, articles, I did mention about how brands are lacking behind consumer advancement of personalization and technology. Recent and upcoming bankruptcies of luxury conglomerates can be conveniently attributed towards this pandemic, but top thought leaders already anticipated this collapse way before it transpired.

What next? In my view, luxury brands need to engineer the simplest formula to create futuristic engagement strategies with premutation and combination of following key realistic action pointers harmonizing to their own brand DNA.









Above seem to be very simple and naïve but this is precisely what we have neglected. Luxury is not about tag value nor have to bling and gaudy but must be personalized, individualistic, inspiring backed by modern tech resources.

Continuous innovation and progressive approach are the only saviors for the luxury industry. Be it brick and mortar, online, tik-tok driven or AI enhanced etc. it must satisfy the brand personification i.e the target market not the product. When we actually realize the necessity of personalization of our marketing agenda that encompass the buyer instead of the product, our market will not only embrace but also educate us to predict and plan ahead.

Luxury industry is no longer being lead by either sole financial capacity neither by the branding and marketing dollars spent on advertising and commercially motivated campaigns. Let’s be very clear, this is end of the road for commercialism as far as real luxury is concerned.

Futuristic luxury engagements are predominantly driven by the induvial who intends to quench their luxurious thirst on the basis of intelligent decision-making patterns backed by the financial capability.


The global pandemic has taken us hostage longer than we had expected. The impact is widespread, deeper and unfortunately timelessly unbounded. The positive aspect is, we all are in it together and nature is un-winding in a rather ruthless manner; but still not as ruthless as we treated nature. Respecting humanity, nature and wellbeing beyond color, borders and ethnicity must be learned. We all realize that we will not be able to survive another tough lesson.

As a luxury observer and specially on the subject of FUTURE OF LUXURY, let’s contemplate on the aftermath of this unraveling episode of virus driven global economic downturn. Anyways, we are all in a dire need of positivity and a feel-good factor within and around us.

I have to start from the beginning and that’s undoubtedly, China. For the Chinese it is the beginning of the end game with their sheer resilience as a nation against the mammoth virus encounter. Without any preconceived intentions, China has created the global learning platform twice. First, how to deal and conquer unimaginable enemy and second, how to rebound on luxury shopping spree. Shoppers are queuing in front of a Chanel flagship store in Beijing and there are 80% of the mall visitors who are visiting more than once a week. This surely is a LUXURY LIBERATION and shows us the light at the end of tunnel.

This phenomenon looks logical as desperation creeps in on both sides, shoppers and brands. Brands will expand their offerings in fashion that endeavors to cover up some percentage of the unexpected loss. Juicy sales, discount plans, value added offers and multiple buying schemes will be disguised in favors and compensation for their loyal customers. Consumers will adopt SHOPPING THERAPY and REVENGE SPENDING techniques to overcome this quarantine nightmare. Need base shopping will surely be a reality but this will be overshadowed heavily by psychological satisfaction of galivanting in malls, trying various options and window shopping.

Luxury travel sector will take its time to get to normality as different countries will return to “Business as Usual” with their own particular cultural and social fabric. There will be reluctant travelers except those who got stuck at the wrong side of the map. This pattern swings in favor of national industry where the first surge in spending will be within local market then foreign. Historically, this is the best progression module for any economy where initially spenders strengthen the local economy and then subsequently heads to overseas.

As an optimistic and futuristic individual, we must REFLECT on our actions as humans, RESET our lifestyles and PLAN for the next page of global well-being as a universal citizen. Nature has its unique way of telling us that we are all in it together.

We weren’t paying attention earlier.


With the precipitous arrival of the second decade of 21st century, we are where, we assumed will be by mid of 21st century.

From child labor to waste free environment, to sustainability to environment friendly initiatives and so on. And now, we stand at a threshold of technology advent with AI and 5G opening doors to a multitude of innovative directions we choose.

The question is to where and how?

We already discussed personalization, transformation from Experience to Expression in my previous notes. Let’s explore involvement of new entrant, TECHNOLOGY into our jigsaw puzzle of Future of Luxury.

Key to personalization is the ability to choose what suits ‘me’ rather than what’s available. In every buying behavior, our choice is the combination of several past and current factors impacting our personality. We are influenced by the flow of communication, exposure to the global market, celebrities, influencers, marketing & promotion campaigns, high tech gadgets and one touch buying. All of this has impacted our choices to a large extent.

I believe TECHNOLOGY will change all this forever.

Our tastes, choices and preferences are driven by information, trends and one’s stretch of imagination. We tend to opt what facilitates or inspires us to look or do better within our capacity of taste and finances.

What if, we are exposed to infinite options that not only satisfy us but are made to perfection for us? What if, we are offered to curate as per our own choice at the time, place and price at our terms? Artificial intelligence can make this happen and beyond.

So, the core phenomena of buying behavior is at stake, isn’t it? When buying behavior will shift on its axis, what will happen to the current marketing techniques, advertising, promotion and especially branding jargons? All of this heading to redundancy?

I don’t have answers to all but have questions that are thought provoking and lays a foundation to initiate a dialogue from & between well informed marketers and technology experts.

Let’s welcome the second decade of 21st century with surprised learning for all of us. Happy Holidays and Happy New Year.


Since the last two decades or so, international Luxury Brands have been positioning and communicating the core element of their brand as an EXPERIENCE as compared to the brand value. Positioning statements have been transpired by the feel and inspiration you get by associating with the brand.

Marketing gurus across various global markets have done exceptional efforts to transform brands into experiential assets. Be it a launch campaign or retail ambiance, or even an online platform that endeavors to facilitate you with experiential aspect of the brand. This has been the most lucrative direction that primarily hiked the price of brand units by many folds as compared to none or less experiential claiming brand. Our favorite discussion point as a brand is “we don’t sell products; we give you Experience”. To me, that already sounds like a cliché.

Just to elaborate about the ‘Experiential’ aspect and its thought process, what exactly a brand means when they say it’s about an experience. Experience of what? Your brand, your corporate direction, your positioning as compared to your competitor or accomplishing your top line financial objective.

So, what’s really happening, as a consumer I need a bridge/messenger to express who I am, and that bridge is the BRAND. A simple example could be when I wear a t-shirt, it has a logo somewhere if not all over, that will align me with this brand and ultimately people around me and even myself should feel that I am that brand. In conclusion, I give money to the brand to adopt me as it’s brand ambassador and the brand accepts me happily. Only criteria to become a brand ambassador is my financial capability to buy an item of the brand. How mediocre is that?

The good news is, a small section of consumers understood this marketing gimmick and decide to go unbranded. We are aware that whom all have gone without any mark of a brand and yet have a capacity to own these brands. To me the future of branding is, to be unbranded.

The next is, I don’t need a brand that introduces me or defines me. I am THE BRAND.

These commercial tangible or intangible brands have to follow me, marketing heads of these brands need to work around me and align their positioning towards me. I don’t need a bridge or a translator to express myself, maybe a brand needs me to express them. I possess far more power and authority to reflect and resonate. In the end, I am alive, communicating, moving, breathing, not a commodity, idol item or a just a glorified brand.

PERSONALISATION is the future of luxury, not the brand architecture that imitates to define YOU.