Every year, YouGov conducts the Global Affluent Perspective, a study which delves into the attitudes, lifestyles, values, and shopping behaviors of the world’s most successful households. Respondents are interviewed across 14 countries about their opinions of and relationships with over 299 brands across 11 sectors.
The latest findings from the study have revealed that 77% of consumers in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait claim feeling like they have a personal relationship with a brand is a factor in their loyalty.
The research reveals currently brand loyalty is waning in the Middle East countries. 65% of consumers in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait claim they find themselves less loyal to brands than in the past. 79% claim they don’t stay loyal to a brand as there is always something better coming out.
Interestingly, 81% of the wealthiest consumers from all three countries agreed that many non-luxury brands now offer a level of quality comparable to luxury brands. To that end, 71% believe quality has become a standard, and they tend to look at ‘other’ criteria when considering brands.
When it comes to distinguishing luxury, a brand with artistry (46%) and rich history (44%) stand as the most appealing factors according to the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait’s most affluent. Exclusiveness is also high on their agenda with 36% favouring limited availability.
The study found that affluent consumers in the Middle East countries are more enthusiastic about buying luxury products than their global counterparts. Three quarters of the affluent from the Middle East said they desire to buy more luxury products in the future, compared to 42% across the 12 other countries surveyed.
The results also reveal that for the majority of affluent consumers in the Middle East countries, luxury is an expression of success and that is why they buy. 82% agree luxury brands reflect a certain level of achievement, while 75% agree luxury brands communicate things about people that other brands don’t.
Commenting on the findings, YouGov’s Head of Custom Research in MENA, Nehal Jibouri said, “It’s evident from the findings how unique affluent consumers are in the Middle East compared to the rest of the world. Their relationship with luxury goes beyond their ability to just afford it, they clearly view it as a projection of their own success, privilege and exclusivity. With a fierce competitive landscape and the rise of high quality standards being increasingly offered by non-luxury brands, the pressure for luxury brands to differentiate themselves is ever more prevalent. In effect, the study emphasizes the need for brands to distinguish themselves with clear-cut innovation, rarity, artistry and history to sustain consumer loyalty. With clear intentions from the Middle East’s affluent spenders to buy substantially more luxury products than their global counterparts in the next year, the onus for brands to build close, personal and trusted relationships with their consumers is crucial”.
Data captured by the YouGov Global Affluent Perspective among 606 affluent consumers in the UAE, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait between 21 March to 14 April 2017. Data is broadly representative of the top 10% of each country’s most affluent consumers.