The Luxury Market
According to CNBC, luxury consumers have become more demanding as a result of the recession. While consumers continue to be loyal to their favorite brands, they are more mindful of what those products cost. That's why companies have had to adapt their marketing strategies to cope with the changing economy.
Saks, for example, has increased its focus on customer service through enhaced shopping experiences such as events where customers can meet fashion designers. Since luxury consumers like to give back to the community, there's also been an increase in cause marketing, where companies partner with charities to raise money for a cause.
Since the economy is starting to get better and the unemployment rate is going down, however, people are a bit more willing to pay full-price for luxury goods. Leading the way in terms of full-price luxury purchases is Gen, consumers between the ages of 18 and 29. CNBC reports that Gen Y spent 31% more in 2011 than in 2010. While consumers don't just buy whatever they want, they are more willing to buy luxury good promoted by celebrities and blogs.
Luxury MBA Programs in Europe
SDA Bocconi offers a 12-month Masters in Fashion, Experience & Design Management for students who seek management roles in fashion, luxury or design-based companies. SDA Bocconi has partnered with Bulgari to create a luxury business management track.
ESSEC's 11-month Luxury Brand Management MBA program offers several specializations including fashion and accessories, fragrances and cosmetics, watches and jewelry, wine and spirits, cars and technology, and hotels and real estate. ESSEC's LVMH Chair is an academic and research track in luxury brand management offering coursework which combines theorhetical knowledge with practical information about the special characteristics of the luxury field.
International University of Monaco
The International University of Monaco offers elective courses in Luxury Management for MBA students. Students take 18 credits of electives that begin in the winter term and continue into the spring term.
Paris, France and Milan, Italy
HEC Paris' Luxury Executive MBA program offers a Luxury Major designed for current and future luxury brand managers. The Luxury Major is offered in conjunction with SDA Bocconi and involves two one-week sessions in Paris (May) and Milan (October).
Luxury MBA Programs in the USA
Harvard Business School offers courses in luxury brand management. Students can also join the Retail and Luxury Goods Club which holds an annual conference to connect grad students with industry leaders.
New York, NY
Stern offers a Luxury Marketing specialization for MBA students. Graduates of Stern's full-time MBA program have gone on to work at several fashion and retail companies including Ann Taylor, Burberry, Chanel, Coach and Louis Vuitton. Like Harvard Business School, Stern has a luxury-focused student club, the Luxury & Retail Club, that organizes Stern's Luxury & Retail Conference.
Columbia Business School
New York, NY
Columbia Business School offers five electives designed to give students a bird's eye view of the retail industry. In addition, Columbia's Retail & Luxury Goods Club has developed a list of suggested courses for students who plan to work in the luxury goods industry upon graduation. The Retail & Luxury Goods Club also organizes Columbia's Retail & Luxury Goods Conference.