30 Jan

Luxury Women to Watch 2017

Luxury Daily’s Luxury Women to Watch 2017 list honors smart women executives who are set to make a difference in the luxury business, particularly in marketing, retail, media and digital in 2017.

As with their predecessors in years past, this roster of honorees shares the same qualities: dedication to craft, ambition, leadership potential and educator. These executives are also quite aware of their role-model status as a career in luxury becomes a more welcoming and appealing option for talented women.

Picking the 25 smartest women with potential was not easy. Luxury Daily invited readers to send in their nominations. The Luxury Daily team also had its own table of candidates.

Once the deadline expired, the Luxury Daily team judged the nominees on their merits and whittled the list to those who showed the most promise to push the luxury envelope in 2017.

The list’s responses to questions confirm their choice.

THANK YOU to Luxury Daily team members Jen King, Sarah Jones and Brielle Jaekel for their help. Many thanks as well to those readers who took the time to nominate candidates. All judging was based purely on merit and potential to make a difference.

Please read this article from first entry to last, listed alphabetically by honoree’s last name. These Luxury Women to Watch are set to distinguish themselves even further in 2017, and raise standards higher in the luxury business.

Mickey Alam Khan
Editor in Chief

Luxury Daily


LUXURY WOMEN TO WATCH 2017


Stephanie Pfeffer AntonStephanie Pfeffer Anton

Stephanie Pfeffer Anton

Executive vice president, Luxury Portfolio International, Chicago

“The changing consumer is going to continue to demand evolution, particularly to meet their needs for convenience and personalization”

What do you most like about your job?

This is an easy one for me because I am very dialed into what I most love, and it centers around the people I work with every day.

Our company is a network of market-leading, successful residential real estate entrepreneurs in 60 countries. To qualify for membership, brokers must achieve success in their market (top market share), have demonstrated expertise in selling significant properties, and have built a locally well-known brand name.

As a result, I have the opportunity to work with industry leaders who are truly the best of the best.

My clients are independent thinkers who are willing to take risks, try new things and innovate, so they are always on the leading edge.

It is a dream as a marketer because they are hungry for change, excited about innovation, and aren’t afraid of failure.

It is a very electric environment and it doesn’t hurt that I get to assist with marketing the very finest properties around the world as well.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

One of my biggest challenges is prioritization, and I know so many people can relate.

I am on the road most weeks, spending time with members, while trying to keep on top of the email madness, run day-to-day operations, keep in touch with my amazing team and somehow get to the urgent, while still taking care of the important – the strategic initiatives, looking forward and bigger-picture thinking. It’s a constant struggle, but each year I get a little better at it.

Working with a professional coach this past year has been a big part of my growth in this area. It is one of the best things that has happened to my personal and professional development in years. I would recommend it to anyone looking to be more effective and efficient in their day-to-day.

What is your work priority for 2017?

This coming year, one of my biggest priorities is to ensure our organization continues evolving our global mindset.

Our global growth has been quick and significant, and while exciting, it is not without its challenges far beyond simply language and communication.

Global growth has meant rethinking our entire value proposition, evaluating every communication and embracing doing things very differently. We have come very far and still have progress that can be made.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

I am most proud of participating in building an industry-leading program that has a reputation for innovation and forward thinking while maintaining spectacular customer service.

Our team is world-class, and I couldn’t be more proud of each and every one of them.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

It has been so exciting, over my professional career to watch luxury evolve from the old, antiquated definition of luxury – elitism, traditional design, name brands (alone) – to what it has now become. It’s now about the experience, contemporary design and meeting the needs of an evolving, younger clientele.

I believe that the changing consumer is going to continue to demand evolution, particularly to meet their needs for convenience and personalization.

As a result, we will see luxury brands pushed in new ways, offering products and services that will be incredibly unique and highly customizable and will enhance the lives of affluent consumers even more than in the past, causing an even greater emotional, can’t-live-without-it connection.

Luxury marketers will be equally pushed to find creative ways to connect.

However, the affluent consumer’s enthusiastic adoption of new technologies, coupled with rapid innovation in areas such as mobile and smart technology, make it an incredibly invigorating creative time to be in this space. I can’t wait to see what comes next.

 


Amrita BantaAmrita Banta

Amrita Banta

Managing director, Agility Research & Strategy, Singapore

“The definition of luxury is changing and moving beyond product and brand to experience and service”

What do you most like about your job?

The fact that I can work with very smart senior executives from luxury brands across industries – finance, travel, fashion, wine, jewelry, cosmetics and watches – and help them to shape their strategy with cutting-edge data, insights and market intelligence.

Our projects span the globe and I have the opportunity to work with clients in the U.S., London, Paris, China and Hong Kong and all emerging Asian markets, which makes it a very enriching experience.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

To provide the highest quality of insights and research to our global luxury clients, coupled with top end client service and customized strategy.

What is your work priority for 2017?

Build up our affluent practice even more and provide a one-stop data, insights and consulting solution for premium brands to help grow their market share in the global marketplace.

We are expanding our operations in China and this market is very high priority for us in 2017 as we do a lot of high profile and strategic projects in China already.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

Being nominated as one of the top 10 luxury data and insights firms globally.

Being insights partners with INYT luxury events all over the world and often quoted on CNBC, BBC and top media for our insights.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

The definition of luxury is changing and moving beyond product and brand to experience and service.

Luxury brands need to know how their consumers are changing and that’s where we come in to help them gain insight and foresight into their consumers and what’s next.

It’s a very exciting time for us and the industry and look forward to 2017.

 


Lisa BarnardLisa Barnard

Lisa Barnard

CEO, Illustrated London News Limited, London

“The next biggest evolution for luxury brands will be the integration of data with content”

What do you most like about your job?

ILN is a content marketing agency specializing in global luxury brands.

I love seeing client activity evolve from what might be a loose idea into a fully formed brief into a beautiful piece of work, which achieves the desired results.

In the luxury sector, we have the luxury of being able to push the boundaries of engagement, as well as to finesse the final creative output appropriately for the audience.

We’re a boutique agency, so senior staff are hands-on and able to add value to major projects.

I like the fact that all members of our team genuinely care about the work we do, and take pride in the end result. It’s all about the people.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

Being perfectly honest, it’s nothing to do with luxury.

As a smaller agency the ebb and flow of business and timings, in an unpredictable marketing environment, is the biggest challenge.

If a client doesn’t pay on time, or a project we were counting on doesn’t materialize or is postponed for whatever reason, we have to adapt and leap frog over a possible black hole, elegantly, of course.

I’m a mother of three daughters, the oldest just stopped being a teenager and the youngest is about to become one, so I know all about challenges.

But having 20-plus mouths to feed at work each month is what keeps me awake at night.

What is your work priority for 2017?

We launched the Luxury Content Network last summer and my priority is to expand it in 2017.

We have created a series of online magazines and content partnerships with global luxury brands, including Aston Martin, Sotheby’s, Raffles and Godiva Chocolatier.

Our big idea is to join up these audiences to allow access to a combined 3 million-plus affluent consumers per month and create opportunities for native advertising for third-party brands.

We believe that launching a network of luxury brand publishers is a media first.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

My proudest achievement is undertaking a management buy-out [MBO] of Illustrated London News (ILN) in 2007 and developing it into an agency that specializes in luxury and works with world-class brands.

I am proud of the work we create and that we punch above our weight – for our clients and for ourselves.

For example, we have just been reappointed by Aston Martin to publish their brand magazine in a competitive tender against some major companies – it’s a brand all agencies covet and we’re proud to have been retained.

We have been through one major recession, then things got better and now the climate in the U.K. post-Brexit is uncertain.

When my friends ask me what I have achieved since the MBO, I say survival.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

Luxury was slow to embrace digital. Now luxury embraces digital wholeheartedly. That development has meant an extraordinary content revolution.

Content is ILN’s specialty, so we feel we are in a good space for the future.

The next biggest evolution for luxury brands will be the integration of data with content.

The luxury sector has been slow to leverage the full potential of Big Data analytics, but is perfectly poised to take advantage of it now. That will result in reducing complexity and increasing focus and effectiveness.

 


Soozan BaxterSoozan Baxter

Soozan Baxter

Market retail consultant, Soozan Baxter Consulting, New York

“True luxury is priceless. It is the heartbeat of a meaningful, memory-making experience that evokes all the senses”

What do you most like about your job?

I only work on retail assignments with which I have a great passion.

Working on luxury-oriented new development for shopping centers allows me to tap into my creative side, shape an environment, and tell a story through the retail experience.

A great side benefit of my career is the great friendships I have forged.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

Being patient is my greatest challenge. The most worthwhile deals take time and nurturing.

What is your work priority for 2017?

I love bringing a  “first retailer to the market” so that is always a goal.

Additionally, in 2017, I will continue to wake up with the intention of having the best day ever, and with that mantra, I want my clients to be thrilled with my ideas, enthusiasm and production.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

Working on Brookfield Place in Downtown Manhattan will always stand out, as I was involved in leasing, marketing, legal and operations.

We brought in incredible tenants including Gucci, the first CosBar in New York City, and Bottega Veneta.

But most special to me is that I was a small part of redeveloping the 9/11 neighborhoods, the greatest example of good triumphing evil.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

True luxury is priceless. It is the heartbeat of a meaningful, memory-making experience that evokes all the senses and makes people pause for a moment from their busy lives.

 


Maria BoyleMaria Boyle

Maria Boyle

Founder, MB Communications Ltd., London

“Luxury marketers need to work a bit harder to understand their audiences in a lot more detail and how best to communicate with them via the most effective channels”

What do you most like about your job?

I particularly love the people I get to work with. They are all pretty much at the top of their game, be they CEOs, CMOs, thought leaders, creative directors or designers.

What unifies them is that they are brilliant at what they do. I have wonderful conversations with them and learn a lot along the way.

I also love the brands and companies I advise and feel very privileged to sit alongside global CEOs and their leadership teams, whether they are in Paris, London or New York. I love bringing their brands, services and products to life utilizing my PR skills.

After 25 years in the business, I am still as eager and enthusiastic as my first day in PR. I just love it.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

I suppose it’s having enough time.

I’m very quick off the mark, don’t procrastinate or waste time. Even when I’m “off” the job I’m still “on.”

Another challenge is keeping up-to-date with today’s super-informed and digital literate luxury consumers. They are engaging with luxury brands in a different way than they did ten or even five years ago and it’s an area that is continually changing and needs careful monitoring.

What is your work priority for 2017?

To continue to grow my business while ensuring my key clients are taken care of and their business PR needs are met.

All my clients are really fabulous and I never take it for granted that they’ve chosen to work with me.

I am very fussy about the people I work with and each member of my team has a minimum of 15 years of PR experience.

Luxury clients are very sophisticated and demand seniority, experience, quality thinking and the ability to navigate and manage any situation carefully. It is a model that has worked extremely well for the last 10 years of running my business and it is one I won’t be changing.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

Being recognized by Luxury Daily is up there, I have to say.

I’m absolutely thrilled to bits.

As a PR, it’s quite ironic as I very rarely do my own PR – it’s all about promoting my clients – so to get this recognition is wonderful.

I’m often very humbled and also proud that people go out of their way to recommend my company and me.

New clients regularly come to me via an existing client recommendation, which I’m grateful for and I’m always delighted when a journalist recommends me as they are exposed to the good, bad and ugly of PR.

I’m particularly proud to have such a wonderful list of clients, many of whom have been with me since I started my business a decade ago, which, to me, is the ultimate endorsement.

I’m also extremely proud of what I’ve achieved to date.

2016 marks the 10th year since I launched my business. I often have to pinch myself when I think of how well my company has done, but then remember all the hard work and dedication it has taken to get to the place I am in now.

Saying that, I’m never one to rest on my laurels and know what is required to keep going forward.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?
There is a lot of uncertainty in the world and, as a result, luxury brands need to really demonstrate their value and worth to luxury consumers who are being marketed at wherever they go and whatever they do.

From a PR perspective, luxury brands need to stay connected and in tune with their customers.

Consumers of luxury are evolving and their media habits are very different to what they were say, five or ten years ago.

Ninety per cent of the super-rich today are self-made. They grew up without luxury and don’t fit the traditional stereotype of what a HNWI [high-net-worth individual] is supposed to look like.

I think luxury marketers need to work a bit harder to understand their audiences in a lot more detail and how best to communicate with them via the most effective channels.

I’d like to see more relationship engagement with luxury brands and their customers happening in 2017.

Global strategies need to have the flexibility to work on a national and then local level and the best will resonate at a personal level, too.

I also think brand heritage storytelling will continue to be important as it enables luxury brands to emotionally engage with their target audiences and, if done well, turns customers into potential brand advocates for life.

 


Julietta DexterJulietta Dexter

Julietta Dexter

CEO, The Communications Store, London

“Weirdly, I find my office one of the most relaxing places in my world”

What do you most like about your job?
I am incredibly fortunate – I absolutely love my job. I don’t really see it as a job, but more of an exciting, challenging, ever-changing project that populates my days.

Every day is varied, every client is interesting and I care a lot about their successes and their challenges.

Weirdly, I find my office one of the most relaxing places in my world.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?
Looking after our community, our TCS family.

We have big teams and keeping culture, making sure that our values and ethics stay strong at all times, is key.

We aim to be strong, wise, passionate and caring in every aspect of our work.

We have two functions: one to look after our clients, the other to look after our staff. It is a constant, ongoing and never-ending task. You have to keep focus and you have to be consistent all day, every day.

What is your work priority for 2017?
Sustainable growth. TCS is 21 years old. We’ve grown holistically year over year and that is important to me. We strive for sustainable growth and profit and, at the same time, we work hard on building career paths and development plans that ensure each member of our teams is treated with respect, looked after like a human being and has a truly exciting career path at TCS.

We’ve opened our offices in the U.S. and have started very positively.

Our culture seems to be of huge value as a differentiator.

One focus is to create a fluid, global workforce that collaborates in a modern, relevant and nurturing way. All of our team members have to have global horizons.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?
I am not very good at “proud.” Much more interested in how we can do better.

The luxury goods industry has such a huge opportunity for thought-leadership, change and consciousness. I hope so much to be a valuable part of that development.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?
Redefining luxury is already well in train. Accessibility, relevance, consciousness.

We are increasingly focused on purpose-driven campaigns and enjoy working with intelligent, innovative pioneers who are willing to make change. These are the people who will move the needle, and we love working with them.

 


Carrie FisherCarrie Fisher

Carrie Fisher

Senior vice president and chief marketing officer, Neiman Marcus, Dallas, TX

“We continue to see interest increase for “see now, buy now.” We want to continue to work with our partners to meet this consumer desire”

What do you like most about your job?

Neiman Marcus gives me a unique opportunity to work with both the best luxury brands in the world and an amazing team with great experience in luxury retail.

Working together to evolve how we interact and engage with customers in a new digital and experience-focused environment is exciting and provides challenges.

I’m excited to work with our teams and partners on what is new and next for us as we head into 2017.

The pace of change in consumer shopping behavior means we will need to continue to innovate to meet our customer needs and expectations in a way that is uniquely NM [Neiman Marcus].

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

One big focus area for us is how we continue to break through with customers – helping them find what they need, inspire their shopping journey, and provide excellent service in an increasingly noisy and complex multichannel experience.

More information than ever is available digitally, but how can we help make sense of everything? Creating marketing and store programs that merge the online and offline experience, and create meaningful relationships and service that stands out from the crowd.

What is your work priority in 2017?

Continue to evolve our digital sophistication.

We have a very successful online business, but how do we evolve beyond the transaction and create a more memorable and service-filled experience.

And then how to we continue to use our marketing channels, unique merchandise and service offerings to reach and engage the digitally savvy and well as traditional customers. This includes ensuring we look at all channels and partnerships holistically, with the customer in mind first, flexing our processes, marketing and experience to create the best customer-first approach.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

We have several new interesting partnerships and digital programs that will engage new customers that haven’t shopped with NM before or people who have not shopped with us in some time.

We continue to be proactive in thinking about how our customer shops and how we can provide a differentiated experience.

I think watching this evolution in the next year will be the most exciting thing I have been a part of to date. Stay tuned.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

We continue to see interest increase for “see now, buy now.” We want to continue to work with our partners to meet this consumer desire. Immediate gratification related to what people are seeing in trends, what’s coming next, social media, et cetera. This changes the luxury process and cycle as well as how we market, when and how we leverage different channels.

In addition, consumer expectations continue to rise in relation to personalized service, recommendations, messaging and offers. We look to marry this need with the most relevant wear-now product to evolve how the customer thinks about their shopping – blending seasons, and also how they interact with us.

 


Trisha GregoryTrisha Gregory

Trisha Gregory

CofounderCEO, Armarium, New York

“We get many requests and opportunities daily, so learning to prioritize and sometimes say no is definitely important”

What do you most like about your job?  
I love building something that is useful and problem solving to both the consumer and the brand.

Partnering with global luxury brands to further disseminate their brand message is something I have always been passionate about.

I love introducing our clients to new and existing brands and further educating them on high fashion through our platform.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?
The biggest challenge is definitely learning to prioritize.

We get many requests and opportunities daily, so learning to prioritize and sometimes say no is definitely important.

We have a very hands-on approach with our clientele and a lean team, so teaching them to prioritize is also key.

What is your work priority for 2017?
We are focused on further getting the word out to more women who can benefit from using Armarium for their various lifestyle occasions.

2016 was important to build the brand and to walk before we could run in terms of outreach, but 2017 will be a key focal year in terms of more marketing and partnerships.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?
To offer luxury through an accessible price point to a new customer, while maintaining the integrity of luxury brands through our platform, content and services, is something I am very proud of and something we will continually evolve and expand.

We’re breaking barriers and eliminating the intimidation factor to introduce a new clientele to high fashion.

 


Nancy JohnstonNancy Johnston

Nancy Johnston

Founder/CEO, Tengri, London

“Consumers’ interest in sustainability will continue to grow and, in response, brands need to take more responsibility for their supply chains”

What do you most like about your job?

Meeting and working with a huge variety of truly inspirational people. They range from Mongolian nomadic herder families at one end of our 100 percent transparent supply chain, to designers, textile scientists, makers and bespoke tailors at the other.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

Running a startup means I need to keep a lot of different plates spinning.

Specific challenges include working across the very different cultures of Europe and Mongolia, as well as the different time zones of the global supply chain.

We always try to turn the challenges of working with interconnected communities into an asset.

What is your work priority for 2017?

Growth. We’re looking to expand sales of Tengri knitwear as well as sales of Tengri Noble Yarns® – Mongolian yak fibers that are as soft as cashmere, warmer than merino wool, breathable and hypoallergenic.

For designers and manufacturers, the amazing qualities of this 100 percent natural and sustainable fabric offer fantastic possibilities.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

I was delighted to fly the team to Mongolia and celebrate our very first fashion show there, bringing together people from the start of our supply chain with our designers, bridging East and West.

I’m also very excited to announce a number of collaborations with prestige luxury brands in 2017, firmly cementing our developments in the luxury sector.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

Consumers’ interest in sustainability will continue to grow and, in response, brands need to take more responsibility for their supply chains.

I think the industry will see more innovations in design and sustainable production as people ask more questions about the provenance of the products they buy.

 


Elizabeth Webbe LunnyElizabeth Webbe Lunny

Elizabeth Webbe Lunny

Vice president of luxury, The New York Times, and publisher, T Magazine, New York

“As marketers become less reliant on traditional forms of advertising, we are not just trying to adapt, but rather transform the advertising business”

What do you most like about your job?
I love being a part of a company that is redefining the boundaries of digital storytelling.

We have phenomenal leadership here at The Times that encourages all employees to take creative risks and that’s a great environment for us to thrive in.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?
The media landscape is constantly evolving.

As marketers become less reliant on traditional forms of advertising, we are not just trying to adapt, but rather transform the advertising business at The Times to best fit the needs of our brand partners.

What is your work priority for 2017?
In 2017, we will continue to focus on and create new ideas for our T Brand partnerships with our luxury clients. This certainly includes experimenting with virtual reality and augmented reality, as well as new native opportunities that help our brand partners tell the most engaging stories.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?
The continued growth of mobile and personalization in 2017 will allow us to better collaborate with our brand partners and allow marketers to tailor content to their ideal audience.

 


Natalie MeltonNatalie Melton

Natalie Melton

Cofounder and managing director, The New Craftsmen, London

“The desire for authentic experiences will continue to grow, and brands will need to really think abut how they can create moments that support that”

What do you most like about your job?
I love the fact I lead a team that are as ambitious and committed about the growth of the business as I am. That we have continually set ourselves highly aspirational goals and then deliver against them. That whilst the pace of work is quite intense, we manage to have a lot of fun and laughter along the way. And the thrill of securing a fantastic commission or a great sale for one of our makers and seeing their businesses grow as a result of the hard work we are putting in representing and selling on their behalf, never, ever diminishes.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

We work with over 100 independent craftspeople and artisans – many of whom have limited capacity to make. So rapidly scaling a business with a broad supply chain of limited supplies is certainly an interesting challenge.

What is your work priority for 2017?
To double the turnover of the business. We are on track to do that in 2016 and it’s a trajectory that I’d like to continue.

To ensure that the team are empowered to operate to the very best of their ability, that they feel motivated and supported.

To ensure that the sense of family between customers, staff and makers remains strong even as it grows.

And to continue to work with exceptional partners who share our passion for great craftsmanship. Working with Burberry on Makers House in 2016 has undoubtedly been one of my all-time career highs.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?
Ours is not a conventional take on luxury, so the fact that in a relatively short period of time we have become recognized for helping to define a new kind of luxury is something that I feel incredibly proud of.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?
I think it will be an interesting year for luxury – the desire for authentic experiences will continue to grow, and brands will need to really think abut how they can create moments that support that and enable consumers to forge lasting connections with the objects that can then holding true meaning for them.

 


Sara OrlandoSara Orlando

Sara Orlando

Publisher, WatchTime magazine, New York

“We must be hyper-aware of changes in journalism, in the watch business, and what consumers are interested in”

What do you most like about your job?

I enjoy working with our hard-working and talented team at WatchTime everyday, but also value the opportunity to step into the luxurious world of watchmaking when I visit my clients and learn about their business and creative development in the world of horology.

Meeting collectors at our events like WatchTime New York is another aspect that I love because their enthusiasm for watches is contagious.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

We are tied very closely with the watch industry and watch consumers, which is a unique position for a publishing business.

Our challenge is that we must be hyper-aware of changes in journalism, in the watch business, and what consumers are interested in, as far as content, experiences and products.

What is your work priority for 2017?

Digital is not one size fits all. We’ve made advances in previous years, but we have to be immediately responsive to the changing digital landscape.

Additionally, our audience is a major priority to us. We have to maintain their engagement by providing insightful and timely content as a leading authority in the watch world

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

My proudest achievement in luxury is the launch of the WatchTime New York event that we created two years ago at Gotham Hall in Manhattan.

We bring together over 20 luxury watch brands to showcase their latest novelties and collections to watch consumers and collectors who come to the show from all over the country and abroad.

It is important that U.S.-based collectors and enthusiasts have a destination where they can experience new timepieces and feel like they are a part of something special.

WatchTime New York was the first show of its kind to specifically unite the audience and the brands, essentially bringing the magazine to life.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

Being in the business of time, I know that consumers will continue to appreciate the luxury of a mechanical timepiece on their wrist, but I see evolution in terms of marketing to an increasingly educated consumer within niche categories.

Luxury marketing will need to be more engaging, interactive and authentic.

 


Charlotte Parks-Taylor is client director of Cream UKCharlotte Parks-Taylor is client director of Cream UK

Charlotte Parks-Taylor

Client director, Cream UK, London

“There is always a delicate balance between building desire and allure for a luxury brand, whilst catering for increasingly demanding audiences who want services, products and information instantaneously”

What do you most like about your job?

As a boutique agency with an entrepreneurial spirit, Cream is full of diverse and passionate individuals, making it a fantastic place to have started my career in media.

The work is always challenging as we develop the business to adapt to the changing media landscape and our client’s needs.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

One of my biggest challenges is remaining engaged with emerging trends and developments in media, whilst ensuring that they are appropriately interpreted for luxury brands and audiences.

There is always a delicate balance between building desire and allure for a luxury brand, whilst catering for increasingly demanding audiences who want services, products and information instantaneously – something that is often counter to a culture of seduction and anticipation that luxury brands trade on.

What is your work priority for 2017?

One of my key priorities for 2017 will be to continue the growth of the luxury team and business at Cream, ensuring that new skills and work streams are nurtured.

Of course, day-to-day client management and operations are essential, but personal passions and idiosyncrasies are paramount.

At Cream, we are keen to help people to discover their passions and become experts in niche areas, regardless of their seniority in the business.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

I am not only proud but grateful for the opportunity to build my own identity within the luxury sphere so early in my career.

Being welcomed into such a brilliantly collaborative business, I was given the freedom to devise media strategies and contribute to new business in a significant way.

Securing new business is one of my proudest achievements as I feel I’m at my best when thinking of innovative and creative approaches for brands.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

With the mass adoption of technology, and particularly social media, we are experiencing a revolution in access whereby brands are more easily reached and touched than ever before.

No longer is the store experience the only point of interaction. This development in accessibility will mean that luxury brands need to evolve to ensure that every touch point, whether it be physical or digital, is a significant one and consistent with their brand ethos and identity.  This is especially pertinent when considering more niche luxury, where there often is no entry-level purchase point where the brand can be adapted to entice new consumers. These brands will need to become far more engaged in digital media to remain relevant and maintain their allure in a changing landscape.

 


Jean X. PohJean Z. Poh

Jean Z. Poh

Founder/CEO, Swoonery, New York

“It’s easier for people to compare things with what they know rather than imagine what they’ve never seen”

What do I like most about my job?

It’s amazing to see how rapidly technology and media are causing shifts in our behavior, and I feel very privileged to have an opportunity to build what I imagine the future will look like.

Having come from the corporate world where things are much more linear, the contrasting freedom of creating something that doesn’t yet exist is incredibly gratifying.

There are little moments when I take in what my team and I have accomplished thus far and a sense of wonder washes over me.

To see something that was nothing more than a figment of my imagination come to life, to witness my team growing and thriving— its magic. I love that.

What is the biggest challenge in my job?

The biggest challenge for any founder is fundraising.

In addition, luxury jewelry is a sector that very few people are familiar with, so learning how to overcome that throughout the fundraising process has been eye-opening.

I realized that it’s easier for people to compare things with what they know rather than imagine what they’ve never seen.

So now I take it upon myself to learn about the companies, industries and business models my audience is familiar with and then make comparisons to Swoonery by analogy. It provides a much clearer framework for evaluating our business and, in the process, I learn so much from investors’ experiences and vantage points.

What is your work priority for 2017?

Measured, deliberate growth.

I think we are at an inflection point across all industries because of how quickly tech is evolving and in this race to be first, tech companies all too often forget about people.

In deciding Swoonery’s trajectory over the next year and beyond, we have to take into consideration the fact that we are simultaneously a tech company and a luxury experience provider, and what growth looks like for each is very different.

As we mature, it is my responsibility to ensure that we as a company always put people first — they are after all why Swoonery exists.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

Swoonery is so young, I wouldn’t presume to have a sweeping achievement yet.

I often think about the fact that mankind started wearing jewelry as early as 75,000 years ago as a means of communicating social standing within their communities.

There is something about jewelry that speaks to the very core of our identity as human beings. If Swoonery is able to facilitate that connection and help individuals feel understood, that’s an accomplishment I would be proud of.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

With the sheer speed of technological development and the mind-boggling quantity of content and competition, I think the question every luxury brand will have to answer for themselves is, “How do I break through the noise?”

 


Renee RauchutRenee Rauchut

Renee Rauchut

Associate director for content creation and media, Cadillac, New York

“By 2020, millennials will account for four out of five luxury car purchases around the world. For this demographic group, luxury is defined by collecting life experiences”

What do you most like about your job?
I love fighting for a challenger brand such as Cadillac.

When you have smart people, a powerful company and the best product on the road, it’s a winning combination.

We have a lot of work ahead of us to rebuild this iconic brand, but with our team’s commitment and talent I’m confident that Cadillac will return to the top.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?
With Cadillac’s move to New York in 2015, we built a relatively new organization with a diversity of talent from agencies and across industries such as automotive and luxury.

While everyone was energized about bringing Cadillac back to the “Pinnacle of Premium,” it certainly took some time for us to become a cohesive unit.

These growing pains are expected and I’m proud of the progress we’ve made to align our team and unify the Cadillac brand around the world.

What is your work priority for 2017?
My priority for 2017 is to produce the most compelling and engaging creative that showcases Cadillac as the progressive luxury brand that it is. This is a continuation of the work that my team and I have done over the past year to create relevancy about our brand.

In 2017, our focus will be more product-centric as we continue to tell the story about our model lines and the brand.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?
My proudest achievement thus far is seeing the consistency of our retail and brand communications across all of global markets.

Our creative reflects the diversity of our customer base and workforce while keeping “luxury” at the heart of how we go to market.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?
Luxury brands must deliver on an aspirational promise.

While luxury will continue to be about product substance, it will to evolve by becoming even more experiential.

The emergence of millennials is a powerful force in the luxury landscape.

By 2020, millennials will account for four out of five luxury car purchases around the world. For this demographic group, luxury is defined by collecting life experiences and we must be equipped to deliver on this expectation.

 


Fflur RobertsFflur Roberts

 Fflur Roberts

Head of luxury goods, Euromonitor International, London

“The global luxury goods industry looks set to continue to expand in 2017, albeit slowly, with disappointing headline growth”

What do you most like about your job?
The luxury goods industry is so exciting and never stands still.

I love sharing our knowledge and data with clients and helping them to make strategic decisions based on the hard work that we do at Euromonitor.

I am more of a people’s person and thrive on energy and being physical, but a lot of my work is desk-bound, so when I get the chance to meet other like-minded people at luxury events and conferences around the world it really makes me happy.

On the whole, I think supporting the industry through all our research, working with journalists and the media and seeing our hard work published in the public domain always makes me feel a bit proud and happy, as does presenting our data at luxury events around the world

What is the biggest challenge in your job?
The luxury market never stands still and trying to predict the future is always challenging. Sometimes we get it right and, of course, sometimes we get it wrong.

But in most of our new year predictions we have a 70 percent success rate which we think is pretty good going.

What is your work priority for 2017?
To build a stronger and bigger luxury system which will cover more aspects of luxury by capturing experiential luxury as well as personal luxury.

In 2017 we will be moving in new areas of luxury for Euromonitor, so as well as including personal luxury goods, we are also going to capture things like luxury cars and luxury hotels. I am so excited about this and can’t wait to get started.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?
The proudest achievement on my part is creating the luxury goods database in the first place.

So many people said that what we wanted to achieve was impossible but we have proved otherwise.

We are still the only data provider in the world to cover the luxury market in such detail and across so many geographies.

Since 2011, when we started to research luxury goods, we have made somewhat of a name for ourselves and have become the go-to company in many cases, whether that is in terms of commercial support or indeed media support.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?
Divergence remains a key theme across the luxury markets for the year ahead.

According to our latest data, the global luxury goods industry looks set to continue to expand in 2017, albeit slowly, with disappointing headline growth.

As tough global trading environments continue to prevail, the market and key luxury players face mounting risks for 2017 – social and political unrest in Asia-Pacific, economic slowdown in Latin America and conflict in Eastern Europe will conspire to restrain growth in both key emerging and developed markets

Indeed, they will continue to face headwinds from major luxury players such as France and Hong Kong, as well as other large emerging markets, such as Russia and Brazil, while instability in the Middle East continues to cloud the horizon.

But whilst 2017 will not be a stellar year for the global industry overall, we will see some tailwinds, with markets such as India and Mexico in a much stronger position.

At the same time, luxury brands and retailers continue to seek ways to harness social media and tap into the psyche of the digital consumer, as connectivity continues to drive new opportunities in digital innovation and growth in the omnichannel continues to reach new frontiers.

 


Edie RodriguezEdie Rodriguez

Edie Rodriguez

CEO, Crystal, Los Angeles

“Luxury tastes are always changing, and not just seasonally”

What do you most like about your job?

I’m truly blessed, as I love every aspect of my job.

Perhaps what I love most being the extrovert that I am, is meeting with our guests and Crystal’s team members from around the world and listening to their comments and suggestions.

As a global luxury consumer myself, I love traveling the world for both work and pleasure and getting new ideas that we can incorporate in to our Crystal luxury brand experiences.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

Watching and staying on the pulse of geo-political situations and natural occurrences such as earthquakes, hurricanes, et cetera, and always ensuring that our guests, crew and assets are always kept as safe as we can keep them.

The good thing when these type of situations arise is that with having assets that can move such as ships and airplanes, we can quickly adjust itineraries and thus quickly move our assets around.

What is your work priority for 2017?

We have many things going on in 2017 as the world’s most luxurious lifestyle and hospitality brand portfolio at “All Things Crystal.”

My top work priorities for 2017 include the successful and on-time delivery of our two new custom luxury-class river vessels for our Crystal River Cruises brand in June and August 2017.

We are also launching on Aug. 31, 2017 Crystal AirCruises. This luxury brand experience is all about taking guests on our own 777 airplane that is custom configured for 84 guests, with 180-degree, lie-flat Crystal Exclusive Class seating and luxurious social spaces to take guests around the world in Crystal style, offering fully curated and inclusive journeys for 15, 22, and 29 days by private jet.

Our launch partner is the fabulous Peninsula Hotels chain for this iconic first journey and experience.

We will kick off the year in January with the opening of our new Sydney, Australia, marketing and sales office. We also just opened our Amsterdam, Holland operations support office for Crystal River Cruises in November.

And, of course, continuing to ensure and secure the foundation of our long-term growth by working closely with our shipyards that our parent company owns as they are building all of our future vessels.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

Ensuring that the two-decades-plus of the Crystal luxury brand equity was able to continue to grow and evolve. This was all due thanks to the support and financial strength of our new owners [Genting Hong Kong] that have owned us since May 2015. They fully support my vision of taking our brand, that was originally “just” Crystal Cruises, the world’s most awarded luxury cruise line, to the evolution of our company to Crystal, the world’s most luxurious lifestyle and hospitality brand portfolio.

Seeing the fruition of all of our new brand experiences come to life form my proudest achievements.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

I have coined a three-character acronym that I call ” E. C. O.”  This stands for exclusivity, customization and options. These three components are the foundation of everything that we are doing at “All Things Crystal.”

I feel, and research has shown us, that today’s global luxury consumer requires these three attributes in all of their luxury purchases.

I also feel that we need to be in a state of perpetual evolution. This is due to the fact that luxury tastes are always changing, and not just seasonally. “E. C. O.” is how I perpetually see luxury evolving.

 


Alexandra Lind RoseAlexandra Lind Rose

 Alexandra Lind Rose

Cofounder and creative director, Armariam

“The proper fit is an instant confidence boost”

What do you most like about your job?
I love working with the luxury brands, selecting and curating the inventory selections each season.

I love working with the clients to solve their dressing needs and find the perfect look for them, while saving them time and money. Seeing their excitement when discovering a new brand and trying a new look is the ultimate in gratification.

I also love working with my cofounder, Trisha Gregory. We share the same passion and vision for building Armarium.

What is the biggest challenge in your job? 
Changing the mindset of how women dress and thinking of Armarium for all occasions – not just black tie.

Our mission has always been to dress women throughout the week for an array of occasions, whether it’s an interview, a meeting, a cocktail party or a date.

Armarium’s varied assortment includes coats, tops, pants and accessories to build the perfect look when you want to make an impact without the investment.

What is your work priority for 2017? 
Making Armarium the destination for women looking to make a statement, whether that may be a charity ball or a networking event.

Proving to the customer how easy it is to use our service so they use Armarium more frequently to upgrade their own wardrobes by renting statement luxury pieces to add in.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury? 
A well-edited collection of statement pieces that provides women with an assortment of options without having to invest a lot of time or money.

We also listen to our clients needs’ and take the time to sort out their correct style and sizing. The proper fit is an instant confidence boost.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017? 
Customers will have the option to be able to try or buy expensive luxury statement pieces. Offering the experience, while also giving that unique luxury piece a life before it goes to sale, which also provides more exposure for the brand on a customer level.

 


Samantha SaxSamantha Sax

Samantha Sax

Executive vice president for marketing and sales, Elad Group, New York

“Our culture, more than ever, is hooked on technology”

What do you like most about your job?

My role at Elad Group is dynamic, challenging and inspiring.

Every day is different – and that is what keeps it exciting.

One minute I am reviewing floor plans and finishes with architects and interior designers, the next minute I am speaking to the press about sales trends and the next I am collaborating with the creative agency about our new advertising campaign.

Working for a company that has allowed me the freedom to infuse my creative and, oftentimes, out-of-the-box ideas, into every aspect of the design, development and marketing of our projects has been incredible.

I am fortunate to work for a company that has given me the opportunity to be surrounded by some of the most successful talent in our industry, who not only have inspired me, but have also been instrumental in bringing some of my innovative ideas to life.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

The real estate industry is constantly evolving.

In order to stand out from the competition, we need to be innovative to be one step ahead. Buyers and brokers are often overwhelmed with options as we jostle for their attention.

It is my job to ensure that Elad Group finds ways to differentiate our projects from our competitors by bucking trends and taking risks. This can be especially challenging in a fast-paced and unpredictable environment that is often oversaturated with new projects.

What is your work priority for 2017?

With our latest award-winning project, One West End, almost 70 percent sold, we are working to maintain momentum and achieve a complete and timely sellout.

As construction is well underway, I will be designing model residences, developing the next phase of our advertising campaign, as well as rolling out some new and exciting partnerships.

Additionally, I am focusing on the launch of our newest project: a landmarked jewel located in [New York’s] TriBeCa, 108 Leonard. This development enables Elad Group to return to our roots and do what we are known for – restoring a landmarked property.

I look forward to introducing the market to this project’s unique offerings, where I hope to match or exceed the level of success that we have enjoyed at One West End.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

Creating marketing strategies that are the first of their kind has been hugely rewarding.

I have developed partnerships with like-minded luxury brands that bring a home to life or add an interesting new element to a project in ways that people have not seen before.

For instance, at 22 Central Park South, we created an unheard of amenity that allowed residents direct access to Bergdorf Goodman, the world’s most exclusive department store.

Additionally, the penthouse at 22 Central Park South was accessorized and furnished with nearly $1 million worth of Lalique. This was the largest collection of Lalique ever available to purchase at once in a single residence and the partnership was the first of its kind for Lalique.

At One West End, we published The Westender, a lifestyle magazine dedicated to promoting the building’s culture and neighborhood from an editorial standpoint.

At The Carlyle in Los Angeles, we facilitated partnerships with Fendi Casa, Minotti and Cantoni to curate a series of expertly designed homes, sold fully furnished and accessorized. I hope to establish several more partnerships that are just as fabulous and fashionable in the future.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

Our culture, more than ever, is hooked on technology.

Social media, virtual reality and smartphones are powerful drivers in all major industries worldwide, especially real estate.

Buyers and brokers want to be able to tour an entire property at their convenience, whether it’s from the comfort of their own home or from an airplane.

As luxury facilitators, we are challenged with finding inventive ways to stay relevant in an ever-changing marketplace while maintaining the essence of our brand.

Although we need to stay on top of new technology, there is still demand for traditional marketing strategies like print advertising and hard-copy brochures.

Keeping this in mind, we must strive to accommodate both ends of the spectrum and, in effect, bridge the gap between contemporary and traditional marketing.

 


Thomaï Serdari, Thomaï Serdari

Thomaï Serdari

Professor of luxury marketing at NYU Stern, and founder, PIQluxury, New York

“Consolidation of the luxury market will continue in 2017, with independent luxury brands being absorbed into large conglomerates”

What do you like most about your job?

The companies I advise and those I follow in the luxury market operate as creative businesses. Their products and services stem from contemporary creative practice as they closely align to design and art enterprises. As such, they stir passionate responses both in-house and in consumers and critics.

I love being the one who analyzes that passion and methodically reshapes and reinforces it in a way that is clearly reflected in the company’s bottom line.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?
Guiding executives away from mass-marketing strategies and tactics is my biggest challenge.

Convincing them that the right path to success in the luxury market is the balance of short-term operations with long-term growth is challenging, especially because in luxury long-term growth is contingent on the intangibility of brand equity rather than on the physical expansion of the business.

What is your work priority for 2017?

In 2017, I would like to focus on a brand launch and have the opportunity to set the brand’s foundations correctly from the beginning.

In luxury, business and brand strategy are entangled. The brand cannot be articulated after the specifics of the business strategy have been set — the two must evolve in tandem.

In other words, without the proper supply chain, production and operations, the creation of a luxury brand is elusive and lacks longevity.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?
To straddle both the academic and the commercial worlds is a fine balance and a privilege. They both inform one another, feed my curiosity and challenge my thinking.

Luxury is about cultural intelligence.

When my clients or a few of about 200 students per year have a breakthrough in defining a luxury brand’s business strategy, I feel I have done my job successfully.

I am most proud of having articulated a framework [published in John Armitage & Joanne Roberts eds. “Critical Luxury Studies,” Edinburgh University Press, 2016] which clarifies the path to success for all luxury brands, either heritage or startups.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

Consolidation of the luxury market will continue in 2017, with independent luxury brands being absorbed into large conglomerates.

However, there will be a shift away from traditional products, such as leather goods and accessories, into other product categories, especially those directly related to experiences, for example travel, tourism et cetera.

 


Anna Szubrycht is founder of Chic BeingAnna Szubrycht is founder of Chic Being

Anna Szubrycht

Founder and owner, Chic Being, Santa Monica, CA/Cannes, France  

“New luxury consumption is moving from opulent to meaningful, from possessive to experiential”

What do you most like about your job?

I love the high flexibility and international mobility.

Due to my global, multicultural experience and the boutique structure of the consultancy, I have the privilege of working with international luxury clients wherever they need me – on-site or remotely, location is no barrier.

I’m also fortunate to meet and exchange ideas with luxury brand owners and thought-leaders from across the globe, which never ceases to inspire me, and enjoy sharing my own passion for new market trends, marketing strategies and tools with the wider community, too.

Today, we’re experiencing faster than ever changes in the luxury industry and being a part of this transformation brings a lot of satisfaction and learning possibilities.

Continually embracing change means I can deliver meaningful strategies and solutions to the businesses of my clients.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

After over 10 years working in-house for a number of prestige brands, it took a lot of determination and courage to launch my own company just a year-and-a-half ago.

As a new name in the industry, my biggest challenge is still in building Chic Being’s brand awareness and gaining the trust of existing and future clients.

I also need to wear a number of hats, acting as both reliable business coach and change agent, leading niche and up-and-coming brands forward with digital-driven solutions. It is a unique service, which requires a balance of confidence, leadership and education to get absolutely right.

What is your work priority for 2017?

For Chic Being, 2017 is all about growth. I’m working hard to build our global brand awareness, bring more established brands on board and meet more decision-makers and thought-leaders from the industry, a particular focus being growing our services in luxury branding and ecommerce.

I’m also a firm believer that you never stop learning and growing on a personal level, so as well as seeking out something new every day I’m also looking for an experienced mentor and partner to help me grow the business in the U.S.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

As a young business, my highlight so far is definitely receiving a nomination as one of the [Luxury Daily’s] Luxury Women to Watch in 2017. It is incredibly rewarding to feel that what we are doing at Chic Being and where we are heading has captured the attention of the luxury industry’s expert community.

In terms of client achievements, a significant and unexpected moment came when we were invited to pitch for a project by the U.K. headquarters of Rolls-Royce after only one year in the market.

We didn’t win the project, but the take-out was positive. It confirmed to me that the direction of our development is right. We just need to work even harder and get bigger.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

Our philosophy is that modern luxury lifestyle is about being rather than having.

New luxury consumption is moving from opulent to meaningful, from possessive to experiential.

Activities that reinforce unique customer experiences – intertwined with identity, self-expression and lifestyle – will create the future of this industry.

Modern luxury consumers desire newness and a sense of discovery, yet at the same time they want to share their experiences.

Therefore, I see luxury evolving towards strong social communities and social shopping of culture-oriented premium brands.

 


Rebecca WilsonRebecca Wilson

Rebecca Wilson

Chief curator, Saatchi Art, Los Angeles

“Whilst more and more people are comfortable buying art online, it is for some people still a little daunting. But what we have learnt is that it’s actually far less daunting than going into a gallery”

What do you most like about your job?

I love the way being the curator of an online gallery enables me to see works from all over the world every day – we have artists in 100 countries – and in every style you can think of.

It’s also incredibly gratifying to hear from so many artists that Saatchi Art has enabled them to make a living from their art that would not have been possible otherwise.

Nearly every week an artist gets in touch to say they have moved to a bigger studio, or been invited to have a gallery or museum show because their work was seen on Saatchi Art.

I also love helping people all over the world find artworks they like, whether they are interior designers, property developers, seasoned collectors, or people new to buying art.

I love matching buyers with artworks I think they will fall in love with. In the last six months, we have sold works to people in over 80 countries.

I am also very fortunate to work with a team of extremely smart people who are all helping to transform the art world, giving many more opportunities to talented artists all over the world to show their work, and enabling people who love art to discover it in a friendly, informative and accessible way.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

Whilst more and more people are comfortable buying art online, it is for some people still a little daunting. But what we have learnt is that it’s actually far less daunting than going into a gallery.

Through being very transparent in terms of giving all the information upfront about each artwork on our Web site, and through using technology in exciting ways, we can help people to make informed decisions about the works they are buying.

What is your work priority for 2017?

To continue to introduce more and more people to Saatchi Art and show that if you love art, enjoy going to museums and finding out about artists, then you can translate that passion into having beautiful, one-of-a-kind artworks in your homes.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

Sometimes it’s the simplest things or the least expensive things that can be the most luxurious and enriching.

For me, it’s taking time to discover really talented young artists and making investments in their work, knowing how vital this kind of support is to them as well as giving me intense pleasure.

I have on my wall a nine-foot painting by Los Angeles-based artist Erin Morrison and am stunned by its brilliance every day.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

I think that perhaps our assumptions about luxury and what is luxurious are changing.

Time, good food, simple comforts – a lot of the things that we take for granted are becoming the new luxury.

 


Vanessa WrightVanessa Wright

Vanessa Wright

Global communications director for Martell, Mumm, Perrier-Jouët at Pernod Ricard Group, Paris

“It’s more challenging to profile our customers, as they are no longer who they were and no longer do what they did”

What do you like most about your job?
I am so privileged to work on extraordinary luxury brands – Martell, Mumm and Perrier-Jouet – that are centuries old (nearly 700 years in total). They are steeped in history, heritage and savoir-faire. They are handcrafted and cared for by passionate people who I learn from every day.

I truly love what I do, working with colleagues from all over the world, in a company that fosters an entrepreneurial spirit and where our “Createurs de Convivialite” strapline is an everyday reality.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?
Consistency, consistency, consistency is absolutely fundamental in building our global luxury brands and it’s a very real challenge when you are working internationally, as different countries have a different understanding of luxury.

Consistency in terms of authenticity is also essential.

People are looking for luxury products that have a very real pedigree and credibility in how they are made, what they stand for and how they behave.

Finally, consistency in communication, so that the very many different touch points clearly articulate the brand story, messages and values and bring it alive in an appealing way.

Our challenge is also to continually keep abreast and fully adapt and adopt the changes in digital communication.

What is your work priority for 2017?
It sounds obvious, but at the heart of everything are our customers.

Our priority is to really, really understand them, their habits and how they make choices, so that we are relevant and appealing. Their needs, desires and interests are changing very quickly and we have to keep up to speed.

Our desire is to appeal to them by creating strong campaigns, platforms and events, for example, our partnership with Formula E and our recent signing with Usain Bolt as our brand ambassador for Mumm, which fits perfectly with the “dare, win, celebrate” platform. Another example is L’Eden, our wonder-of-nature garden by Perrier-Jouet.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?
To have played such an instrumental role in The Martell 300th anniversary celebrations in 2015.

I am so proud to have been part of a small team who created a series of year-long activities that saw us finding the perfect balance in celebrating the history of Martell whilst at the same time showcasing its contemporary relevance.

We are the only brand to ever to have had an aerial display by the French military Patrouille de France at the Chateau des Versailles, the very heart of French Art d’Vivre.

We also organized an event for our 3,000 winegrowers and their partners, whereby, in Pernod Ricard style, our employees hand-delivered every invitation over the period of two months.

How do you see luxury evolving?
It’s probably about some re-setting.

While some traditional values of luxury purchasing still hold true – authenticity and quality- today’s customers and their habits are continually changing, so it’s more challenging to profile our customers, as they are no longer who they were and no longer do what they did.

There has been a change in wealth generation through startups and other new industries and these new customers are always on and connected and they need us to be, too. That’s the very real challenge and, like so many other sectors, luxury needs to adapt too.

 


Joanna YoungJoanna Young

Joanna Young

Group director of strategic planning, Team One, Los Angeles

“Luxury brands need to be forward-looking, rather than just paying homage to a gloried past”

What do you most like about your job?

I’m always curious about people — what makes them tick and what inspires them, their aspirations, and the ways they evolve and shape culture.

I love that my job allows me to study consumers and cultural trends, and then apply these insights to solve business problems in creative ways.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

There just aren’t enough hours in the day.

What is your work priority for 2017?

Continue to deeply explore the motivations and desires of modern affluents around the globe, and apply these learnings to help clients innovate products and messaging.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

This year, we deepened Team One’s existing base of knowledge on wealth and luxury in two significant ways.

First, we expanded our existing quantitative study on global affluents to 4,500-plus people in 14 countries.

Ours is the only study I know of that goes beyond demographics or behaviors, to intimately understand what drives the world’s wealthy, from the traditions they value to defining their personal legacy, to the things on their bucket list.

Secondly, we teamed up with a team of semiotics experts to identify the codes of luxury in the modern world.

Luxury brands need to be forward-looking, rather than just paying homage to a gloried past. And we now have a tool kit to help our clients lead the charge.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

Shifting focus back to inspiring, rather than delivering.

The industry has spent a lot of time recently talking about the importance of artisanship and authenticity, and how to get the digital experience right. These are very important matters, of course. But, most of all, luxury is about sparking passion and creating desire.

Luxury brands are able to bring to life the things people can’t imagine, to take their breath away and have them say, “I didn’t know that was even possible.” I think the industry is starting to refocus on creating unique and highly desirable experiences.

 


Sabrina YuSabrina Yu

Sabrina Yu

Managing director, Select World, New York

“I strive to create a nurturing environment, where employees feel part of the decision-making process, where collaboration is the most important tool at our disposal, and where families are always welcome to visit”

What do you most like about your job?

It’s wonderful to be part of an international agency with so many passionate employees. Select World is a truly global agency, in location and as represented by our employees from across the globe.

Every day is a chance to be inspired by our team and that reflects in the creativity we bring to client projects.

The diversity of the work, from fragrance to skincare to high-end jewelry, allows for creative challenges and keeps my job constantly evolving.

What is the biggest challenge in your job?

The biggest challenge of my job is also the most joyous, finding a work/life balance.

My daughter, Pilar, now makes regular visits to see where mommy works, and I make sure to schedule time each day when my phone is off.

Instead of being overwhelmed by the juggle, I have found it to be an inspiration for my creative leadership.

I strive to create a nurturing environment, where employees feel part of the decision-making process, where collaboration is the most important tool at our disposal, and where families are always welcome to visit.

What is your work priority for 2017?

The biggest priority for me in 2017 is all about growth and evolution.

At Select World, we are used to pushing boundaries in our work, and want to continue that creative process in the New Year.

We are always seeking out the best talent and partners in an effort to create a holistic approach to the work we do.

We will continue to scale the agency and are excited for announcements to come in the next year.

What is your proudest achievement in luxury?

It’s difficult to choose only one project or milestone, but two projects do come to mind.

I’m exceptionally proud of our long-term partnership with Amway for Artistry.

Tasked with re-elevating the beauty brand to prestige prominence, we have helped propel Artistry to the global stage. The success the brand has had not only reflects in the creative work we have provided, but also the way in which we have worked together.

Today, Amway has surpassed Avon as the world’s number one direct-selling brand and Artistry reigns as a top-five premium global skincare brand.

As for the other project, I am still inspired when I see our campaign for Balenciaga under Alexander Wang featuring model Anna Ewers.

We worked with famed photographer Steven Klein on this campaign, and the image still gives me chills. I am so proud of the direction we took for that ad.

How do you see luxury evolving in 2017?

One of the reasons I love working with luxury brands is that the industry is never in hibernation.

In the next year, we will see the India and Asia markets continue to swell.

As for the work itself, content will remain king with creative storytelling coming to the forefront.

I think we’re going to see some new and different strategies on that front as well.

Technology is going to come into the fold in a way we haven’t seen before, with brands and agencies continuing to experiment with VR [virtual reality] and 3D printing.

Customers will also take center-stage again, with luxury brands looking to create unique experiences.

I also suspect we’ll see more with mass customization and smart wearables, allowing for data to result in feedback to make products and services better for each customer.

Needless to say, 2017 will be a very busy year for our industry, but one of great inspiration.

 

Add Comment

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload the CAPTCHA.