Discounting is a balancing act for brands, as sales can draw in consumers but excessive discounting can cheapen their image. Finding the balance is crucial. Here are three unique tactics brands can employ in order to make discounting work for them:
Creating a secondary platform for your discounting is a simple way to ensure you reap the rewards of the sales tactic without compromising on the high-end image of your brand.
This can be done by selling through discount channels, which is a popular strategy for luxury companies who don’t want to sully the high-end reputations of their metropolitan stores. Discount stores often target a different geographic consumer, allowing them to engage with brands that would otherwise be outside of their reach, and thus the discounting has little impact on the brand's primary consumers. This is a strong tactic when it comes to selling end of line stock and allows brick and mortar establishments to keep their current displays fresh and up to date rather than laden with last seasons leftovers.
Brands such as Bloomingdales, Nordstrom and Nieman Marcus have employed this approach to discounting, with sales outlets scattered across the country.
Personalise your Discounts
Discounting can cheapen the image of a previously high-end brand, but by making your discounts tailored to your luxury consumer, this problem can be avoided.
By creating a subscription-based model of discounting, consumers will feel as if they are part of an elite club, rather than purchasing from a brand on the decline. Memberships which offer updates on new collections, styling tips and tricks for their range of products and most importantly exclusive sales are a smart way to increase brand loyalty as well as reaping the rewards of discounting. Some brands choose to assign an annual charge for memberships for a more intimate clientele, while others open the floor to anyone who walks through their doors. Both tactics have their benefits and offer different opportunities for the companies.
Subscriptions create an elite community for your brand, which fosters a stronger community of consumers for your label. They can be personalised to your companies exact needs and wants to create a model of discounting that works for you.
Create a Mask
Some of the biggest turn-offs for luxury consumers are marketing or advertising techniques which cheapen brands. Obnoxious sale signs or frequent discounting makes brands appear unpopular, which makes consumers second guess their investment in a potentially declining label.
Discounting can be made into an occasion, making it a high-end event that customers feel pride in attending. Interactive demonstrations, charity fundraisers and product launches provide the perfect opportunity to incorporate discounts into the already attractive occasion. Discounts will be a hit with consumers, without appearing like a desperation tactic. You will receive the same influx of consumer attention, as you would be advertising the discounts, by promoting the events while ensuring that the integrity of your brand and products will remain intact.
The power of high-energy events when it comes to impulse purchasing should not be understated. Consumers arrive ready to spend top dollar, so discounted items will be flying off the racks at these high paced and anticipated occasions.