Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Buying luxury: Hedonistic or French?

Date:
February 6, 2013
Source:
University of Delaware
Summary:
Why do consumers around the world buy luxury goods? In the U.S. it's about hedonism. Meanwhile Germans focused on function, placing emphasis on quality standards over prestige, as did the Italians, Hungarians and Slovakians.

A University of Delaware researcher is working with colleagues around the world to better understand consumers' perceptions of luxury goods.
Credit: University of Delaware

A young woman in Tokyo pays 243,000 Yen for a Louis Vuitton suitcase emblazoned with the company's iconic monogram. A continent away, another woman purchases the same suitcase at the company's store on New York's 5th Avenue for the equivalent price in dollars, $3000. Why? What motivates their purchases? And, do those motivations hinge on their location?

Related Articles


That is precisely what Professor Jaehee Jung and her collaborators at universities in 9 other countries sought to answer. Their findings published recently in the journal, Psychology & Marketing, compared consumers' perceptions of luxury.

Despite the glum worldwide economy, luxury goods are selling well. Jung, an associate professor of fashion and apparel studies, and the others found that consumers in different countries, like the two women described above, purchase luxury goods for different reasons. For luxury goods makers, it is critical to consider these motivations, Jung said.

In the U.S. it's about hedonism.

"American consumers generally buy goods for self fulfillment, rather than to please others," she said.

Jung surveyed American college students. Many responded positively to statements such as "pleasure is all that matters." Factors including the quality of luxury items were not a driving concern for the students. Jung said this preference isn't surprising; it is cultural.

"In Western cultures where individualism is valued there is generally less pressure to fit in with groups, such as peers and co-workers, than in Eastern cultures where collectivism is valued," she said.

Hedonistic tendencies may be creeping into countries with developing economies. Brazilian and Indian students perceived luxury in the same way.

Surveys of students in France indicated they value luxury items because they are expensive and exclusive. French consumers responded positively to statements including: "true luxury products cannot be mass produced" and "few people own a true luxury product."

"Many luxury goods originate in France," Jung said. "Cultural heritage and pride might have made them feel luxury is not for everyone."

Meanwhile Germans focused on function, placing emphasis on quality standards over prestige, as did the Italians, Hungarians and Slovakians.

Jung and her collaborators intend to keep exploring what drives luxury purchases, saying it has consequence for marketers, as demand increases and their target consumer base widens. A growing number of customers, college students included, now have a taste for luxury goods, but are not necessarily financially stable. Still, they buy.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Delaware. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

University of Delaware. "Buying luxury: Hedonistic or French?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 February 2013. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130206141535.htm>.
University of Delaware. (2013, February 6). Buying luxury: Hedonistic or French?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved March 30, 2015 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130206141535.htm
University of Delaware. "Buying luxury: Hedonistic or French?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2013/02/130206141535.htm (accessed March 30, 2015).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Mind & Brain News

Monday, March 30, 2015

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

AAA: Distracted Driving a Serious Teen Problem

AAA: Distracted Driving a Serious Teen Problem

AP (Mar. 25, 2015) While distracted driving is not a new problem for teens, new research from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety says it&apos;s much more serious than previously thought. (March 25) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Smartphone Use Changing Our Brain and Thumb Interaction, Say Researchers

Smartphone Use Changing Our Brain and Thumb Interaction, Say Researchers

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Mar. 25, 2015) European researchers say our smartphone use offers scientists an ideal testing ground for human brain plasticity. Dr Ako Ghosh&apos;s team discovered that the brains and thumbs of smartphone users interact differently from those who use old-fashioned handsets. Jim Drury went to meet him. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Many Don't Know They Have Alzheimer's, But Their Doctors Do

Many Don't Know They Have Alzheimer's, But Their Doctors Do

Newsy (Mar. 24, 2015) According to a new study by the Alzheimer&apos;s Association, more than half of those who have the degenerative brain disease aren&apos;t told by their doctors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
A Quick 45-Minute Nap Can Improve Your Memory

A Quick 45-Minute Nap Can Improve Your Memory

Newsy (Mar. 23, 2015) Researchers found those who napped for 45 minutes to an hour before being tested on information recalled it five times better than those who didn&apos;t. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins