Posts Tagged ‘luxury’

Why People Buy Luxury Brands

March 7, 2009

video

lux flood

At some point in your adult life, you realize you’ve sacrificed most of your personality in the name of economic considerations whether these considerations are real or constructed – biological or status-seeking.

It’s at this point in your lifestyle-and-career that you begin to need inanimate objects that seem to have a personality – just the thing you lost over the course of your Consumerist “life.”

So I posit that the “need” for BMW, Prada, Disney, Iphone and Haagen Dazz is created by people who’ve lost their souls to Consumerism, and are aggressively trying to buy it back.

Sadly, I’ve never seen this strategy succeed in replacing the real personality that a consumer drone lost in himself. You can’t buy back a lost soul. You can only stop being distracted by snake-oil salesmen mythology and wait patiently as it (hopefully) grows back.

For many people, luxury items like cars and mansions are a “need” that they have, though it can’t really be logically demonstrated how the possession of these objects really helps improve their lives. Most owners of automobiles – for example – spend a quarter of their waking lives driving, parking, or paying for their life-improving object.

Hard to believe humanity is willing to sacrifice most of its free time in order to buy the “luxury” of spending time listening to CDs in traffic. It may be true that leather is more “luxurious” than cloth upholstery, but it’s also true that free time is far more important to anyone’s happiness than leather upholstery.

All of this identity-seeking-via-products is constructed via marketing and branding. These products have little to do with relieving any craving that people just naturally have. Cavemen didn’t sit around pining for the day they could tear around corners at 120 kmh in Corinthian leather. They were just happy being able to eat food, hang out, and live out of water.

Of course, some would say we’re so much more sophisticated now because of our sudden attraction to brands and machine pedigree. Others might ask, “Why do we have to leave our homes because of the floods?”

:: Capital, Volume One
:: Theory of the Leisure Class by Thorstein Veblen
:: A lively PoFo discussion on this essay

thanks for bumper cars


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