Category Archives: Columns on luxury for ET

Festival de Cannes: A heady mix of luxury, aspirations and counterfeits

Palais des Festival, Cannes: I had the opportunity of having a brief conversation with French actor Marion Cotillard (of The Dark Knight Rises, Inception, A Good Year fame) at the Palais des Festival in Cannes, France. She congratulated me on the selection of my debut movie as a lead actor by Cannes jury and then…
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Reputation management of luxury brands

With the birth of a brand, its reputation is born. Just like the brand itself, the reputation needs to be nurtured and, more importantly, protected. Reputation can’t be built on what you are promising to deliver or achieve, it is only dependent on the promises that you keep, on whether you walk the talk. It…
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The dark side of Luxury

Dear readers you would recall that in my earlier posts I had shared the age-old love affair between branded luxury and our great nation of Royalty. One such example is that in the 1920s, 20% of Rolls Royce's global sales was from our great nation. There are similar true legends about Cartier’s Maharaja of Patiala…
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The theory of relativity: Luxe quotient and luxe factor

Luxury is all about luxe, the dazzle. And luxe is all about perception. What dazzles you may not dazzle me, and vice versa. So, there is no universal ‘Luxe Quotient’ or ‘Luxe Factor’, as I will like to name them. It all depends on the sample that you choose to determine the ‘Luxe Quotient’ or…
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Why e-commerce in luxury will fail

In order to fully understand the inherent contradiction in incoherence at the core of the marriage between e-commerce and luxury and why it is destined for a divorce or a failure, let us first look into these two individually. E-commerce or e-retail has been a game changer. The valuation game in which these biggies have…
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Strategic positioning of luxury brands

“The basic approach of positioning is not to create something new and different, but to manipulate what’s already in the mind, to retie the connections that already exist,” said Al Ries and Jack Trout in their book Positioning: The battle for your mind. It is all about battling for your mind. The classical definition of…
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Of counterfeits and the democratization of luxury

When my friend Raghavendra flaunted to me his brand new all gold Rolex I was taken aback for a minute. He comes from a modest background and the watch costs over 20 lakhs INR. This particular rose gold Day Date model is something I have always aspired to buy. Some day, I had always consoled…
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A guide to strategic luxury brand marketing

A horse, a horse! My kingdom for a horse! Well, that’s luxury marketing opportunity the bard William Shakespeare has spelt out for you. A game of pureplay demand of luxe-addiction and constrained supply in the name of limited-edition or handcrafted-edition. The first step is in understanding the very basic difference between marketing of luxury brands…
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Seven Ages of a Luxury Brand

All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players. They have their exits and their entrances, And one man in his time plays many parts, His acts being seven ages. Just like the Seven Ages of Man described by William Shakespeare, a Luxury Brand also has Seven Ages. The column aims…
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A brand’s guide to luxury retailing in India

When a luxury retailer wants to do business in India the brand has to understand that this is not China and thus cannot be clustered as emerging markets for these brands. The two markets are intrinsically different. We are the old markets for luxury, unlike China. In 1926, the Maharaja of Patiala gave Cartier its…
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