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January sucks. It feels like a long month, we’re on the come down from Christmas and it doesn’t ever seem to stop raining. It’s no wonder then that January is one of the most lucrative months for Tour Operators.

We all like a pick me up, something to look forward to, a reward for all our hard work, but other than the dismal weather prompting us to open our wallets, what other factors drive us to loosen the purse strings? It’s a known fact that Supermarkets play with our senses with clever store planning and even the casino’s in Las Vegas pump oxygen on to the Casino floor to keep people glued to the tables, but how do luxury brands toy with our emotions to bump up their bottom line and how susceptible are we to influence?

A new report by The Schulman Research Center has uncovered the effect that the senses have on our purchasing habits and as Marketers we can put this information to good use. One of the stand out statistics from the research indicated that 17 million adults ranked touch as their No. 1 sense and almost half of these people had made a luxury purchase in the last 12 months. This information has implications for marketers and brands alike, as to point out the obvious, if you are promoting a luxury product with ‘high touchability’ as one of it’s main qualities (such as a leather handbag, soft furnishings, or clothing), how can you capitalise on this quality if selling online? Answer…an awesome, responsive website with killer photography and visual content such as videos to highlight the touchable qualities of the fine materials and craftmanship.

You can see the full infographic here but we’ve picked out some of the other results we found interesting and the effect this could have on branding and marketing in the realm of luxury goods…

  • For 51% of respondents, taste was the most important sense when purchasing fine watches or jewellery
  • For 45% of respondents buying fine wine, beer and spirits their sense of smell was most important
  • Interestingly when buying premium cosmetics and fragrance, smell was not the most popular sense, it was in fact, sight
  • When buying luxury cars, hearing was most important
  • Unsurprisingly, sight was most important for purchasing designer clothing and accessories
  • Lastly, hearing, taste and smell were all equally important for the luxury travel sector

So what does this mean? For brands, it is clear that how people feel on a biochemical level and not just psychological level, plays a huge part in the decision to buy, maybe more than than we thought. This information can be utilised to strengthen the effect that marketing has on the senses to make products even more tempting. Champagne and diamonds or Whiskey and watches have always been great combinations, but given this research, maybe there’s more to it? Holding an experiential marketing event involving cocktails, wine or whiskey tasting for a Jewellery product launch could be worth a try? A website with a great soundtrack or audio clips of car engines could be what your car dealership needs to get the testosterone pumping.

Whatever your brand or type of luxury item, there seems to be a trigger, a biochemical link that we can play on to increase engagement. Take a look through the results and give us a call to talk about developing a marketing strategy to tickle your prospects fancy…

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