The year 2008 will go down as the "Year of Change." This has been a much overused phrase finding its way into speeches, papers, and general discussions socially, politically, and economically. Are we ready for change, new challenges, and new experiences?
I asked a business associate how her company was doing, she responded, "the world has come to a halt." It does seem from a business and travel perspective that the world has slowed down as the year has progressed, and that everyone is in a wait until some unknown timeframe before doing something. The world may have slowed down, but in this case we cannot blame global warming.
But, as the saying goes, the more things change, the more they stay the same. So, have things change, slowed down, or are there new challenges and experiences awaiting us? That depends on your perspective.
I find it has slowed in a good way. The ability to travel and experience the world, though still frustrating with respect to the airline and airport component, is not the unknown that it may have been. In fact, thanks to the news both good and bad on places and people, our curiosity to experience more has increased while the unknown continues to become known. It seems to draw people to see beyond their own immediate surroundings and to ponder what could be.
Luxury Experience enjoys bringing the world to our readers and creating inspiration for travel, places, and people. This year we featured in Destinations: Boston, New York, Stockholm, Berlin, New Orleans, St. Moritz, Arosa, Switzerland; Riviera Maya, Ixtapa-Zihuatanejo, Mexico; Dublin, Ireland; Heiligendamm, Germany; and Skåne, Sweden.
In addition, there are many exquisite chefs and restaurants in our Restaurants and Chefs' Recipes sections that are just waiting for you to travel and experience their cuisine. The Hotels and Resorts section featured Hotels that continue to create new ways for customers to experience not only their respective abode, but to assist the customer to experience their destination and create special memories. Don't forget those luxurious Spas in the Spas section that are just waiting to pamper you.
Luxury Experience is dedicated to ‘Bringing The Experience of Luxury to You' each and every month. Through the different sections from the Liquor Cabinet and Wine Cellar sections that feature exciting new and innovative products and events to learn and experience firsthand; Music Scene showcasing amazing artists from around the world; Adventures to include when planning your next trip; Luxury Products featuring special gifts and food products; Fashion and the Arts and Antiques sections to keep you up on what is new on the fashion scene and what is happening in the world of arts and antiques, we showcase the best of the best. Thank you for your support and we look forward to inspiring your appetite for new and exciting experiences in 2009.
There are many different components that a business needs to address during challenging times. Some people are waiting to hear when their respective country acknowledges that they are ‘formally' in a recession, while others just keep plodding along or are totally oblivious. With all due respect to what a recession is, "two consecutive quarters of negative growth," some companies I know have been riding a rollercoaster of ups and downs since 2002. Many have never been able to establish a firm foot on the ground, so they have been in and out of their own business recessions. Regardless, business people know their company, their people, their products, but the change in their customer base has created frustration and a void.
Challenges have always impacted a company, regardless if they are in an experiential growth mode, though during this type of growth the challenges seem frivolous, or looking at numbers showing that their sales positions have fallen, or the ups and downs throughout their business' life cycle. From a marketing and product visibility perspective, it always comes back to knowing your customer and being able to move your product's position to match your customer's purchasing position.
To use a sail boat racing reference, if two sail boats encounter a calm period during a race they will keep an eye on each other, but they are more focused on scanning the horizon and reading the surface of the water to find changes as they know that a change in the water's surface may mean some wind is coming that way. They know their boat's capabilities, they know their crew's capabilities, now they need to be one step ahead of their competition on reading where their power comes from, the wind.
Reading your customer may mean lowering prices to keep your product in front of them, or it may mean bundling products to provide a more comprehensive and cost effective solutions (read Publisher's Notes - "Do You Ever Stop Managing your Brand?"), or it may result in keeping the price as is or a slight increase but with a focus to connect with the customer's desire for an experience during the purchasing cycle (Publisher's Notes - The Brand, The Experience).
While we are in this calm timeframe we need to draw out any information we have on our customer, their habits, how they reacted to previous product advertising, where are they in the overall economic crisis, and how are they being affected. We have to scan the horizon for where the next wind behind our customer will come from and be ready to provide services or products that connect with them.
Through the ups and downs of 2008 Luxury Experience has been there to bring the experience of luxury to you, as well as some insights and ideas on how to work through the frustration, unknowns, and challenges that a business deals with.
I thank you for your continued support of Luxury Experience, and as always, your comments are welcome, so please send comments to:
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