Robbing from the Rich

Jan 22, 2008 11:46 PM  By

If today’s economic conditions are having little effect on wealthy shoppers, should midline multichannel merchants take a chance and mail to the rich?

While in theory it would make some sense to go where the money is, the risk wouldn’t be worth the reward, says Milton Pedraza, CEO of New York-based research firm Luxury Institute.

Why? Because with the wealthy, it’s all about the status and labels, especially when it comes to fashion, Pedraza says.

“We believe that the Nordstrom consumer will buy less yet remain loyal to a company that, according to our independent consumer surveys, delivers great products, and most importantly, great service,” Pedraza adds. “And the high end retailers have been keeping sales going to keep incentives high in this difficult environment.”

But if the economy does slam the rich, they may shop elsewhere for their undergarments.

“They may buy staples such as socks and underwear at Macy’s already, or at Target and TJ Maxx, as many do, and would continue to do so,” Pedraza says. “But for their fashion items, they will stick to the higher end retailers and buy less.”