Eyecare Business November

NOV 2017

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40 E y e c a r e B u s i n e s s . c o m November 2017 The Empathic Path to the Luxury Shopper What does it take for re- tailers to woo today's luxury shopper? Glancing the upper tier of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs is a good start, says Lori Monaco, president, Fashion Footwear, Acces- sories & Luxury, at market research firm The NPD Group. Famed psychologist Abra- ham Maslow's iconic five- tiered motivational theory of human needs places "esteem" at the top of the metaphori- cal pyramid. But digging deeper to get at what's actually driving humans'—and consum- ers'—craving for esteem can unlock the buying triggers of luxury shoppers. Here, Monaco explains how empathy—of all things—plus technology- enabled convenience and good old-fashioned follow- through are key to the mod- ern-day courtship of high- end consumers. TIP #1 Forge an Empathetic Connection Understanding why your consumer shops and how they prefer to be interacted with is key to engaging and connecting with them. MAKE THE CONNECTION: Do we really need that new designer handbag or pair of sunglasses? On Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, none of these items meets any of our basic needs for survival or sustenance, of course, but they do reach all the way up the pyramid—and our need for esteem rings the bell. Our deep psychological need to feel accomplished and having arrived at a place in our lives drives us to luxury products and services. Being honest about the under- pinning for these needs—to be loved and desired, to stand out from the crowd and/ or be part of a community, to feel secure, to engage our senses, and to have fun— these are the first steps to developing an empathetic connection with your customer. It's the reason that authenticity has taken such a hold today. So, from the front lines, your sales teams should themselves be authentic, and allow your customers to do the same. Retail analyst Lori Monaco shares some surprising ways to win over high-end consumers B Y B A R B A R A T H A U T H E C O N S U M E R C O N N E C T I O N IAMNEE / SHUTTERSTOCK.COM

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