INDUCING META LUXURY

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The concept of meta-luxury was highlighted as an after effect of the global crises of 2008-2009 but it has been there since long and roots from European culture and has evolved interestingly across centuries and cultures. It can be defined as an economic reflection of quality and excellence. Meta-Luxury is a term that goes beyond all obvious and superficial perimeters of luxury that were previously determined. In their book, Luxury brands and Culture of Excellence, Manifredi Rica and Rebecca Robins describe Meta-Luxury as being “luxury beyond luxury”.

The existence of a meta-luxury brand even after the brand is no longer there is very interesting. Meta-luxury brands do not have business results as their key driver, rather, they have an ambition for a place in history through unique achievement. 

 

            Luxury is about showing, meta-luxury is about knowing. Luxury is about stretch and surface. Meta-luxury is always about focus and depth. Luxury is often merely about affording; meta-luxury is always first and foremost about understanding. The concept is both sustainable and realistic as people are becoming more conscious about quality and ethics. They want a supply chain strategy of brands to be more transparent which would work positively with the concept of meta-luxury. The crux is that meta-luxury brands grow through both uncompromising commitments to excellence and limitation. They make decisions around extension and expansion, based on the long-term protection of the brand and health of the business. This is in sharp contrast to many brands that have fallen foul by chasing the immediate gratification of fast profits at the expense of sustainable growth initiatives, leading to brand dilution and value erosion in the long term. The guiding principles of meta-luxury brands will ultimately limit decisions around where the brand should go and, crucially, not go and yet, that very integrity is the long-term economic driver.

 

Meta-luxury is about creating value across generations and that stems from these brands’ desire not only to pursue excellence in their respective fields but also to make their mark in history. If we look at Fazioli, for example, we see a brand that, in a mere 30 years, has emerged as a contender to the title of creator of the best pianos in the world. In a time of 30 years, Fazioli has taken on the pursuit of the perfect piano and is now heralded by many world-class musicians as the pinnacle in piano performance and sound. The basic concept of meta-luxury brands is that they operate counter to the accepted notion of the business driving the brand which Fazioli is doing. 

 

Louis Vuitton is an example of a brand that has abandoned the concept of meta-luxury on some level as there is little that is rarefied about it, with bags sewn largely by machine and multiple factories providing a steady stream of products to an insatiable marketplace. The reason behind these changes could be the aim of becoming more commercial and reach more people.