Connecting with the 1 percent of the 1 percent

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Real Estate


The face of luxury in our society is changing. With a term used so loosely in the marketplace, what does “luxury” mean in our economy, and how can we connect with this market, even beyond those in the top 1 percent?

Scott Ritter, president and chief executive officer of Dahlgren Duck & Associates, recently offered insights at the 2017 Keller Williams Luxury International Retreat.

In real estate, luxury is defined differently across different markets as many varied factors contribute – property values, resident income and area development. For instance, Los Angeles or New York City (the city with the most billionaires in the world) have a higher top end of the market for buyers to afford these properties compared to smaller markets. Overall, the term “luxury” has been used to describe everything from the world’s wealthiest 1 percent to a modestly renovated home with granite countertops.

For now, let’s focus on luxury as the top 1 percent in the world.

According to Wealth-X, which keeps tabs on the super-rich by maintaining a database of information, the number of billionaires is rising across the globe, and the sources of their wealth are changing in many ways that reflect worldwide business trends (Jeff Bezos and Mark Zuckerberg, for example, are two of the top five billionaires in the world). North America hosts 628 billionaires alone and the number is rising by 3.1 percent annually.

There is even a segment of those beyond the 1 percent who do not want their data published or information studied. Over the past 30 years, our company, Dahlgren Duck & Associates, has worked with many of these clients, from royal families to heads of state, in palaces, wide-body private jets, yachts, and any other setting where they travel, work, play or entertain. It’s our job to know our market to satisfy their unique taste in fine luxury brands.

So what has contributed to our success in working with this demographic?

Here’s what we’ve learned:

It’s all about the relationship. Be authentic and treat every single person like they are your most important client.
Be an expert. We are a product of the information we consume and the people we associate with. The luxury market is rapidly changing – it’s up to you to keep up with how this affects your industry!
Embrace revolution. As noted, the billionaire demographic is changing. How is your business changing?
Set goals and measure success. Compete, don’t compare.

The learning doesn’t stop here!

KW Luxury International offers valuable training and education programs that will help you connect with the top 1 percent of the luxury market!