Here’s a thought about the concept of luxury. Luxury has always been about brand; the name, the label, the notion of the world you are buying into, exclusivity, individual expression of choice, and the experience that that brand provides; the shopping experience, personalisation, the delivery and service, the look, the feel, the smell, the touch, the taste of it.
Over time, experience becomes more important. There is more choice, so the experience is critical to brand loyalty. People are more demanding so the experience has to work harder. The desire for self-fulfilment and self-realization leads towards experiences which help us find personal meaning and satisfaction, those which enable us to feel good about ourselves, a growing desire for new experiences.
Now, perhaps, there is another element which is becoming more and more critical – time. Sure, it’s an increasingly precious commodity, but it’s also an investment. Brands that enable or are a part of that investment have to deliver a return. We’ve just partnered with The Future Foundation on a piece of research looking at the future of entertainment. One of the surprising findings was the level of importance people now place on the need for ‘down-time’.
Yes, time is ‘the new currency’. More than that though, time itself is the new luxury. Time to oneself. Time away from the frenetic, fast-paced, always-connected world in which we live. Time with friends. Time having a laugh. Time not thinking. Time doing nothing. Time for self-indulgence.
I’m not big on luxury in the traditional sense (in fact this weekend I’m going camping), but I am big on investing my time carefully. For me, like many, that’s my luxury.