Meredith Xavier Creative Mind behind the Ligné Magazine

Luxury Spotlight: Meredith Xavier from Ligné Magazine

Interior design can be dynamic and dramatic or it can be soft and supple but it should always be inspired. Meredith Xavier founder of the Ligne Agency and Ligné Magazine fell in love with beautiful things when working for Christies in Beverly Hills. After tiptoeing around the basement of the National Gallery and grabbing her Masters in Fine and Decorative Arts Connoisseurship she started the innovative Ligne Agency. Dealing exclusively with the creative world of interior design, the Ligne Agency offers a full public relations and business development service. Their highly selective client list boats the best artisans and designers in the business ensuring that high class vision is everything. We sit down with Meredith to find out how the ever tactile company of Ligne Agency is moving forward in the art of the digital age.

Meredith Xavier Creative Mind behind the Ligné Magazine 1

Every luxury expert has a different story on how they got started in the industry. What is yours?

I started at Christie’s Auction House in Beverly Hills. They hired me as an intern when I was a Junior at Pepperdine - and I became enamored with the culture. I was surrounded by incredible and significant works of art and decorative pieces. Soon I was cataloging sales and handling the business side of the art world.

I moved to London after I graduated and obtained my Masters in Fine and Decorative Arts Connoisseurship from Christie’s through the University of Glasgow. We spent our afternoons in the basement of the National Gallery viewing works of art the public has probably never seen. It was an incredible experience - and I knew working with the buyers and clients at this level was exactly where I wanted to be.

Tell us about Ligné Magazine. Who is your core audience and what marketing opportunities do you offer luxury brands?

Ligné Magazine started as an interior design focused publication and over the years has grown to encompass travel, fashion and culture. There is so much great design out there and sadly not as many places to get it published as there used to be in terms of print - so I decided to start my own magazine and tell the stories I wanted to tell. And I absolutely love to write, when I can find the time.

Our audience is consumers in the top 2% HHI and architects and designers that are working on multi-million dollar homes. Our print issue has controlled distribution, so our advertisers know exactly who it is going to. That is the biggest draw about working with Ligné Magazine. Our online readers vary greatly, but one thing they all have in common is a passion for interior design. That is the core of the magazine and always will be.

Meredith Xavier Creative Mind behind the Ligné Magazine 2.1


In what ways has your publication changed over the years? And how has your publication remained successful in light of competing digital magazines?

Like any magazine we have evolved dramatically each year. The design is better, the content is more international - and we are constantly striving to bring beautiful design to people who are perpetually on the lookout for ways to enhance their home, wardrobe and overall lifestyle. I don’t feel that we are competing with other digital publications - we live in a world that constantly bombards you with information. There is so much to see online that it is at times completely overwhelming. On the upside of that, digital publishing makes it easy to consume several magazines a day regardless of where you are. Ligné Magazine is meant to be something to escape with - a beautiful, clean design with great features that our readers can truly enjoy.

What do you think is the future for print publications, as compared to digital alternatives?

We print Ligné Magazine because the design industry is very tactile. They want to turn the pages, flag designs, bend a page corner - and even tear out images to put on an inspiration board. This is the beauty of print publications. What we are sharing and writing about is nothing like a newspaper. The magazines are meant to be kept and read over and over again - I will always prefer to read a magazine in print than online.

Digital brings accessibility. Articles are easy to share and everyone loves a good Pinterest board. We have a need for both, and I think we always will.

Meredith Xavier Creative Mind behind the Ligné Magazine 3

How has the world of social media affected print publications? And what is your strategy when it comes to social media?

Social media has allowed magazines to expand their audience by sharing original content and driving direct traffic directly back to their publication. It also helps build anticipation towards future issues - we love to preview articles or give sneak peeks to our social media followers so they have the inside track on our upcoming issues.

Many print magazines also manage a successful luxury blog. What is your take on this?

For us, we can’t put everything in print - so online is a venue to share stories and content that we think our audience would love, and just simply doesn’t work into an upcoming print issue. Having an online presence as a publication is vital to keeping readers engaged. It allows constant communication with readers that wouldn’t be available otherwise.

Meredith Xavier Creative Mind behind the Ligné Magazine 4

What do you think constitutes a successful marketing campaign? And what are some examples of successful campaigns that have featured in your publication?

A successful marketing campaign makes you stop and pay attention - whether through verbiage or imagery. It engages, and gives a relevant message to the audience for which it was created. Most of our advertisers are shelter industry focused, and the most successful campaigns are the simple ones. They exhibit great design with no fuss - they allow the quality of the product to come through and speak for itself.

Like most successful blogger/editor, you probably received hundreds of emails per month from luxury brands who want you to share their story. What makes you decide to work with a brand over the other?

I look for the unique - the one of a kind, and the true talent that isn’t just regurgitating what has been seen time and time again. I also publish products and projects that I personally feel stand for something. Sadly, that’s few and far between. And brands that send me a concise, to the point pitch that is tailored for our publication have a much better chance of getting coverage than the generic press release.

Meredith Xavier Creative Mind behind the Ligné Magazine 5

What is your take on press releases? Do you still enjoy receiving them or do you prefer a more personable one-on-one approach?

Definitely the one on one approach. We appreciate when a pitch is directed at our publication - knowing the individual who sent it has a knowledge and understanding of our audience and takes the time to send us edited and relevant content. Generic press releases that are sent to mass audiences are not of interest to us.

If you had to give advice to a new luxury startup on how to get featured in a prestigious luxury magazine, what would it be?

Get your brand out there - pick up the phone and call the editor you are pitching to. Let them know who you are - set a time to meet in person and show your work. Know your audience, your brand message and your PR goals. Editors appreciate hearing the story about the product and why it is significant, unique and worthy of valuable page space. Every pitch may not be a placement, but you are setting the foundation with that editor and building name recognition. That can only help the future success of your brand with that magazine.

Connect with Ligné Magazine on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn. Or reach out to us for an introduction.

Why All Luxury Brands Should Sell Online

Exclusive, elite, rare and sublime, these are just a handful of words that many luxury companies hope will emulate in a consumers mind when they hear a certain brand name. Yet these companies also feel that should they unmask their brand image online that they are at risk of falling from the luxury pedestal. The fear is almost palatable and doesn’t come without deep understanding.

The online world of commerce has long been associated with lower prices, swift availability and an easy shopping system that goes against the luxury grain. Luxury brands work hard to build intricate heritage stories, rich buyer experiences and to soak their status with being selective as opposed to all-encompassing and it seems that translating this to the online marketplace is a tricky feat.

Hermes wants you to feel the slip of their scarves in your fingers, Chanel wants you to sip champagne in their opulent temples like stores and Baccarat wants you to breathe in the fragrance of myrrh in their crystal sculptured bottles before you buy.

Luxury companies are well aware that they are selling more than a product, that they are selling a luxury lifestyle and a visage that taps into our subconscious urge to be special. How can you carry that prestige to the online world where everything is up for grabs and the whole platform reeks of impersonal clinical cut style? This may be the very reason why Chanel, Hermes, and Dior have chosen to keep their wares strictly housed in brick and mortar.

Yet the reality is they could also be falling short when it comes to opening the door of opportunity.

Luxury brands that don’t sell online may be keeping the valuable retail experience alive, they may be placing themselves far from the maddening crowds and they may be retaining their exclusive playing hard to get appeal, but they are also alienating many of their own potential buyers.

The reality is that not everyone with a six-figure income has the time, the patience and the drive to swing by the Champs-Elysees or Rodeo Drive in search of the latest trends. Wealthy people, like everyone else, are busy and also adore shopping from the comfort of their own home. Add into the mix the fact that many highbrow fashion boutiques have a bad rep for scrutinizing customers as soon as they step in the door and you start to see why the trends of luxury online shopping can seem attractive.

There’s little doubt that luxury brands not adapting e-commerce are losing out on sales and kicking their own revenue in the teeth. Of course, increasing sales isn’t always the aim of high-class brands who tout retaining their integrity and protecting their image above all else.

Luxury branding is a creative entity there’s no doubt about it, building a beautiful brand, telling a story that inspires, showcasing the best of your talents and keeping the desire alive in consumers is an art form and why can’t that art form be applied to the online world? Just because a company chooses to sell online doesn’t mean it needs to lose its integrity.

The very essence of an online luxury presence can be a remarkable challenge and can be controlled in the most exclusive fashion.  Beautiful online stores can be created much in the same vein as a brick and mortar set up and high spending clients can gain access to otherwise limited wares. In short, there is a way for luxury brands to sell online without compromising their image and lowering the bar.

Building an incredible online presence through social media is also something that luxury brands cannot ignore as this is where you lay the foundations for future clients, interact with customers and deliver innovative selling techniques to drive your revenue and reputation up.

Of course, all the social media interactions will drive traffic to your site and without anything to sell you are leaving the table bare and essentially turning your own customers away.

It’s not even all about money and loss of sales when it comes to the benefits of building an online marketplace, it’s about the future. The internet is here to stay and future generations are being raised to barely need to set foot in an actual store as everything is so readily available online.

Luxury brands who continue to tread water rather than rising above the tides are sure to get left behind by not embracing the technological change.

If you want to know more about how to perfect your digital luxury experience, consider taking our "Luxury Touchpoints & the Experience of Luxury" online course.




Great Luxury Marketing Resources for Brands

The Luxury market, like any market, is constantly trending, changing and fluctuating with the economy and for those with a vested interest, it helps to stay abreast of these patterns.

With the number of luxury consumers tripling over the past twenty years it seems that every day you can catch glimpse of headlines boasting luxury consumers new style, the changing habits of affluent shoppers and the rise of online marketing for luxury brands.

Of course, many big-name luxury companies choose to stick solidly to their roots and ideals, believing in the richness of their heritage as opposed to cresting and falling on the wave of the times.

Yet all luxury businesses both big and small should be well aware of how the landscape around them is changing, who is emerging and who is lagging so that they are able to place themselves seamlessly in a way that effectively works for their business.

The luxury niche no longer comes with a stiff upper lip and limited choice; it is savvy, sharp, wild and fiercely competitive, melding many styles and contradictions together.

These luxury marketing resources for brands can be the perfect place to start in getting to grips with the world of luxury.

luxury daily

Leading the news in the world of luxury marketing, luxury daily is a divine place to peruse what’s hot, what’s not and what new launches and trends are currently making headlines.

This is without a doubt one of the most comprehensive places to swing by with champagne in hand and find out who Sotheby’s have just signed a deal with, when you can expect Chanel’s new fragrance to hit the shelves and what pocket of the world the Ritz is planning on dazzling next.

Visit Luxury Daily


luxury society

The luxury society is the place to be and be seen, even if it does exist in the sassy world of cyberspace.

This virtual socialite party is a networking haven, throw on your pearls, grab your little black book and hurl yourself into an online world where you can have hearty debates, hash out new concepts, call on the expertise of other members and even strike up new business opportunities with other keen and able entrepreneurs.

Along with meeting and greeting there is news to devour, headlines to hum over and close to the bone topics to explore.

Visit Luxury Society

luxury institute

Get a closer look into the world of luxury with the luxury institute.

The blog is stuffed full of the latest luxury news whether it is letting you know that Kate Spade is closing stores or giving you a glimpse into the most recent celebrity endorsements. Along with the latest headline grabbers, there are many great articles pertaining to studies on luxury marketing and great advice from top affluent leaders on how to adapt your brand to boost your name and reputation.

Visit Luxury Institute



Lorre White AKA the luxury guru is no stranger to the world of the wealthy and with numerous press appearances under her belt, she is the go-to for all things fabulous.

Lorre has firm connections in the power industry and her blog is filled to the brim with interesting articles, insights, product launches and so much more.

For those who want to keep ahead of the current trends and who want to dabble in the world of inspiration and classy living, then the luxury guru can certainly point you in the right direction.

Visit LuxGuru


brand uniq

The power of marketing is arguably even more important when dealing with Veblen goods and this blog will give you plenty of pointers on how to place your brand in the limelight with strategic marketing skills.

Simple, straightforward and free of fuss this blog is crammed with high caliber articles that will help you to place and position your brand, find the optimal pricing strategy, move your luxury presence into the online world and more.

Visit Brand Uniq


bain company 

Bain & Company have built their reputation on being the golden choice when it comes to consulting in the luxury niche and their articles have been published across the globe.

From features in Forbes to the business standard they are certainly up there in the world of knowledge and know how.

Covering a range of industries with far-flung expertise it’s always good to swing by and check out their publications section to see expanding brands in the market, check equity reports and browse their archives.

Visit Bain Company 



Take a sneak peek behind the curtain with Mckinsey and find out the latest insights into luxury and consumerism.

Those who want to know which markets are emerging, which digital consumer trends are growing and what’s happening differently in China than in Europe will adore the wealth of unbridled information available.

Not only can you top up your know-how on consumer trends but you can also get a ton of marketing strategy advice and tips on how to better engage your customers for growth.

Visit Mckinsey


wealth x

Those immersed in the billionaire boom will find the news at Wealth X interesting to say the least.

This financially indulgent blog not only shows you the money but also shows you where the money is changing hands, being kept, growing and falling.

Not only can you find out about China’s newest investment laws but you can also get inside the heads of luxury entrepreneurs, see what designer bag maker Moynat has up his sleeve and see what challenges could be hitting the luxury market for the coming year.

Visit Wealth X


To growth your knowledge in luxury brand management, consider enrolling in one of our online courses.


Future of Luxury - Trends to Follows

Recently, I was approached by Brady Dale, contributor at Fortune Magazine, for my opinion on the future of luxury. Although Dale presented my opinion in a very smart way (thank you Dale!), I wanted to take a little more time to put together additional thoughts on the future of luxury in 2015 to share with those who might need a few extra tips. So here you go, a few tips from someone who has held many luxury hats. Here are a few trends to follow if you want to keep up with the future of luxury.

The Shift From “Me” to “We”

In this new digital era, it’s no secret that luxury brands must embrace their community if they want to stand a chance against the test of time. New luxury consumers, especially Millenniums, need a little more interaction than a great advertising campaign plastered in print magazines and on TV. They want luxury brands to engage them through social media on a regular basis, not just by pushing products and branded facts, but by being real. To achieve this, brands must educate and entertain with interesting content and offer customer service through social media instead of setting up an offshore call center with no real value.

I recently spent a week analyzing the social media channels of dozens of luxury brands as part of a study for a patron and noticed that most are still stuck in the “Me” era. Most talk about them, themselves and …  once again themselves. They rarely acknowledge the fans they are speaking to, and they barely interact with influencers or other industry leaders unless it is for self-promotion. Although some luxury brand managers might think they have embraced the community, I suggest they take time to educate themselves on what it means to have a community mindset in 2015.
These “stuck-in-another-era” luxury brands will need to adapt quickly to the new realities of the “we” environment if they want to stay in the game. Select luxury brands are already paving the way and establishing a new luxury brand/fan relationship standard. A brand can still be exclusive and luxurious while being a member of the community; they simply need to be real.

The Rise of the Luxury Curator

We all know “Time is of the essence” but when it comes to the affluent audience, “Time is the ultimate luxury”. When I worked as a personal assistant for a High Net Worth Individual, roaming the world, planning luxury experiences or buying luxury goods, I was told “unless the cost is more than $10,000, please don’t come to me for an opinion. Just make the purchase yourself according to my taste and needs.” Obviously, when you start out as a personal assistant, that statement is a little scary, but with time, you realize that for HNWI, their time is more precious than their money. They have plenty of money, but little time to enjoy it. Once I gained the full trust of my employer, that $10,000 price point was gradually raised to $50,000.

Therefore, expert curators are luxury influencers, whether they are luxury bloggers, personal assistant, personal shoppers, art curators, and luxury travel agents. They will become even more precious to those who hold the real cash in upcoming years.

For luxury brands, this means that they will need to cater to these influencers and treat them with the same respect as HNWI since they often hold keys to the wallet. I will always remember the day when I entered a car dealership in Montreal and bought two new SUVS in 30 minutes. I didn’t want to drive them; I just needed a charcoal and black one that would be comfortable enough for a Golden Retriever. Now that is purchasing power in the luxury industry.

Luxury Experience Trumps Luxury Good

All good luxury marketing expert understands that in this highly competitive industry, it’s rarely about selling the characteristics of the product, but about promoting the brand experience surrounding the goods. This is why luxury brands spend large sums of money to bring forth their brand story through all available marketing channels.

Once again, it’s no longer enough to tell the story; luxury brands must allow their patrons to “live” this story through exclusive events, private shopping experiences, one-on-one interactions and more. For example, Shawn Boyer, head designer and co-founder of Anatomie, a luxury travel fashion brand, will often fly out to meet his patrons in their private homes to crank up their personal style. He will obviously coordinate Anatomie outfits, but also assist these influential women with heaps of fashion advice. His patrons have become his friends, and you can be sure that these ladies give him a lot back in return for his time and generosity. Shawn makes luxury human once more. He reminds me of Coco Chanel and other great luxury designers when they all started their career. You have to admit that it is a shame that you no longer get the same level of service with luxury brands such as Louis Vuitton and Yves Saint-Laurent.

Although, we have seen many trends in the last year to convince us that the future of luxury is changing, I feel that these are the most important and often the most disregarded by luxury brands. What do you think? Find me on social media, and share your opinion.

Yasmin of Luxury Travel Diary

Blogger Spotlight: Yasmin of Luxury Travel Diary

Behind every great luxury blog, you will find a great story. Luxury bloggers are real people, not machines, and to successfully work with them, we recommend you get to know them a little better. Through our years at LuxeInACity, we have talked, collaborated and exchanged ideas with dozens of great bloggers from around the world.

Since bloggers rarely talk about themselves – they tend to talk about everyone else instead – we hope to showcase their skills, expertise and opinions in this blog series. Get to know them, learn from them and hopefully you will find an innovative way to collaborate with them.

Today’s blogger is Yasmin, a travel addict in love with the finer things that life offers. Her blog, Luxury Travel Diary reflects her devotion to her passions – travel and fashion. Be it a boutique hotel or the latest haute couture collection, you are sure to get a glimpse into the world of luxury, as she perceives it.

Let’s find out her take on the luxe side of life.


Yasmin of Luxury Travel Diary 1

Every blogger has a different story on how they got started blogging. What is yours?

I was a regular poster on Flyertalk and TripAdvisor but I felt that TripAdvisor was getting diluted by a lot of unfair posts and pictures of defects within the hotels (hairs in plug holes, rust on radiators etc) rather than focusing in on the overall experience. I wanted to write honestly about the beautiful hotels I have been fortunate enough to stay in, but focusing in on how special and individual each hotel is. I have extensive experience of luxury hotels and products. My husband is a brilliant developer so he made me a beautiful website. Now people read and like what we are doing which is an honor. Every day it gives me great joy to share our wonderful stories with other travelers. I hope it inspires people to take the trips we have done and stay where we have stayed.

What is your take on press releases? Do you like receiving them or do you simply discard them?

This really depends what the press release is. If it is, for example, a high end brand hotel opening or a fun fashion release with beautiful photos, we will certainly consider running it.

What would make you choose to work with a brand on a giveaway campaign on your site?

Holidays always work well and are wonderfully visual so our readers love them. We have no problems setting up a competition as long as the prize is appealing enough.


Yasmin of Luxury Travel Diary 2

If a brand wants to reach you, what channel should they use? Do you prefer email, social media or another means of communication?

Email is always the best as we get so many DM messages particularly on twitter that we can occasionally miss them.

What is the coolest gift you have received from a luxury brand in a blogger outreach program?

We do get offered many wonderful hotel nights (usually not in the highest season) and have received wonderful ski equipment and gear as well as some superb jewelry. My current favorite is a piece of luggage kindly sent to me from Dressage Collection. It is truly beautiful!

Of all the social media channels you engage on, which one do you prefer and why?

Twitter, the audience is absolutely lovely and sends me kind messages suggesting places to go and feedback on my articles. I love this kind of interaction and to know that people enjoy reading what I write… well there is nothing better!

Which social media channels does your audience interact with the most?

Twitter is our most interactive channel.

In your opinion, what does it take to become successful on social media?

Hard work, more hard work, more hard work and when you go away to review places you have to remember you are taking your audience there too and must keep up the live tweets so a holiday is never quite a holiday! Suits me though, I’m not a sunbathing kinda gal – I get bored easily!

Do you monitor your Klout score on a daily/weekly basis? Do you think this social ranking is of any real value to luxury brands?

Yes I think Klout score is very important as there are a lot of social media accounts out there, and this is the easiest way to differentiate between the offerings. We currently rank 65 and we are still going up.


Yasmin of Luxury Travel Diary 3

What is the main reason you blog on a daily basis? Is it for pleasure, for business or for both?


Apart from blogging, do you offer additional services to luxury brands that choose to work with you?

I am open to suggestion.

Do you think luxury brands should understand that blogging is also a business for some?

Yes, it is for me- I don’t think you can write a good blog part time, it needs to be a full time occupation and passion. Some brands like to get coverage for free and get upset if it is not offered – Not cool.

What would you say is the best thing about being a luxury blogger?

It is a passion of mine. Luxury Travel in particularly is what I love and by writing my blog I am able to share this with my readers. It makes me truly happy!

If you had to mentor a new blogger, what is your go-to advice to become successful?

Pick a subject that you really truly love, then just do it. I think a lot of blogs are started, and then the writer becomes busy with something else. If you really want to be a blogger you need to give up pretty much everything else and put all your energies into your blog. As always, there is no magic to success, it is unbelievably hard work, but if you love what you do, and I do, it is absolutely worth the hard graft.

Reach out to Yasmin on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn. Or, connect with us for an introduction.

Scott Eddy Entrepreneur Public Speaker & Consultant Cover

Luxury Spotlight: Scott Eddy, Entrepreneur, Public Speaker & Consultant

A serial entrepreneur, Scott Eddy is the digital guru you can depend on to help you form lasting meaningful relationships for your business. With an enviable base of followers, he sure knows how to create and nurture relationships. Offering corporate training and consulting services for individuals and businesses, he is also a noted public speaker specializing on topics such as Entrepreneurship, Startups, Social Media, Sales, and Motivation.

According to him, “I love starting companies, so when I get an idea, and have the situation (and time) to do it, then I do it.” Presently, he owns a digital agency in Bangkok, where he has a great team, along with whom he manages what he loves to do most – connect with people.

Let’s take a look at how he began on his career as a digital nomad.



Scott Eddy Entrepreneur Public Speaker & Consultant 1


As someone who is both an entrepreneur and on a PanAmerican road trip, your blog post "What  it’s like to be an entrepreneur and a serious traveler at the same time" resonated with me. You talk about using social media to connect with people in real-life throughout your travels. Any tips on how to find the right people to connect with?

Whenever I am going to a new country, before I go I always go through Twitter to see who is the most active and engaging (brands and people) I try to connect with them, and usually a good group of people reach out to me. I use Twitter for this because out of all the social media platforms, Twitter is the quickest way to connect with someone.

There has been a lot of controversies surrounding Facebook in the last year and many brands have considered shutting down their account for good. In this new Facebook era, what do you recommend to brands who are trying to build a loyal following on Facebook.

Facebook is definitely making it harder everyday. Basically I would say you 'have to' set aside a budget to do paid campaigns through Facebook, if that is against what you believe it, then I feel it will be impossible to build a huge following on there. And if you do achieve it, the way they have things set up, even if you do have a huge following, if you are not paying for 'boosts' or 'sponsored' posts, then your following will not see most of what you post anyway.

Twitter is a great way to build connections with industry peers. As someone who now has hundreds of thousands of followers on Twitter, can you give us a tip on how to build a loyal fan base?

This is exactly what I talk about when I do consulting for this industry. The first thing I recommend is to find your competitors, and see who is engaging with them, see who follows them, and follow those people. From my experience, if I follow 100 of those people, usually about 25-50% of them will follow back. And if you are doing this everyday, think about the possibilities. I say this to everyone, and I will say to you as well, Twitter is the best platform out there!!!!!


Scott Eddy Entrepreneur Public Speaker & Consultant 2


Instagram is a great way to both capture your travel and connect with others who share the same passion. What type of pictures do you find works best to inspire likes and comments from the community?

I think it depends on your following. I usually post quotes, travel pics and, of course, food pics. You have to remember, most of social media is people living vicariously through other people, so try to post unique images, things with the 'wow effect.'

Although a lot of brands tend to dismiss Google + for other social networks, Google seems keen on making it a leader.  In your opinion, should brands give this network the chance it deserves?

I feel that unless you are deep into the technology, this platform is useless. I know some people have success there, but I just don't see it. I have tried a few times with zero success. If its working for you, I applaud you, but I am done with it.

Of all the social media channels you engage on, which one do you prefer and why?

I think my answer is a little obvious. I don't think anything can touch Twitter. You can connect with someone immediately, with less than 12% of all accounts are private you can see what they are talking about and who they are engaging with, and this is the place that most news agencies are getting their first reports it's definitely the place to be for me!


Scott Eddy Entrepreneur Public Speaker & Consultant 3


Do you monitor your Klout score on a daily/weekly basis? Do you think this social ranking is of any real value to determine influence?

Klout is an interesting topic. While I think it is a remarkable tool, I doubt the credibility behind it. Let me give you an example, about a year ago I had a ranking of 76, at that time I had about 250-275K followers on Twitter, and less than 5K on Facebook and Instagram. Now I am much more engaging, have over 500K followers on Twitter and 20K on Facebook and 30K on Instagram (and did I mention MUCH more engaging) and now my Klout score is 72. For me, Klout is EXTREMELY frustrating and I just don't get how they get their scores.

In your opinion, which social media will lead the way in the next 5-10 years?

I think Twitter will get much more relevant, and I think while Facebook will still be relevant, I think they will push more and more people away.

If you had to mentor a new social media newbie, what is your go-to advice to become successful?

Build relationships!!! To be honest, that is all I do on Twitter. I am not looking to sell anything, I have no other motive. I want to make as many friends as I can around the world, because some of those relationships will turn into long-lasting business relationships.

Want to connect with him? Find him on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram or YouTube. Or, you can reach out to us for an introduction.


Defining an Influencer for Your Luxury Brand

The biggest challenge in connecting with influencers for brand awareness lies in identifying the right influencer; in marketing terminology – understanding the characteristics defining an influencer for your luxury brand.

Influencers are usually very active in various social media circles and through blogs. They are brand promoters, brand advocates and niche marketers.

Does your luxury brand really need influencers? Of course! When someone who has hundreds and thousands of followers on social media platforms hails your luxury brand as the next best thing, you will inevitably gain brand exposure in front of an audience who is attentive.

Luxury brands have to look at influencers as mutual friends, connecting their luxury brand to thousands of potential customers. Customers these days do not pay heed to the hordes of billboards or listen to the rhyming commercial jingles like they used too; they are intelligent and want to research a product or a brand on their own and, perhaps, take in the advice of an influencer they trust.
So, what defines an influencer?

Niche: Having someone who has a huge fan following is not going to be of much use to you unless they reach out to your target audience. So, the ideal influencer would be someone who can wield influence over your niche market.

Audience: The influencer's audience must be targeted and focused on your coveted audience. Even though Miley Cyrus or Justin Beber both have millions of social media fans, and may be considered as some of the most influential celebrities, their tweet praising your products might actually hurt your brand if you are trying to reach the affluent consumer.

Reach: An influencer with a huge fan following will surely have a bigger impact than one with a smaller reach. Saying this, do not disregard those who have just joined the digital game as they might become the most influential in a year's time.

Personality Type: A celebrity can be an influencer but so can an environmental activist, a mommy blogger or a private concierge. Before starting an influencer campaign, define the ideal influencer persona that will best suit your brand interests.

Location: Although you may want to reach a specific location, remember that the web is international and influencers often exert authority without borders.

Luxury Spotlight Bryan Peele Founder & President of EMC Cover

Luxury Spotlight: Bryan Peele, Founder & President of EMC

Luxury service should be effortless and flawless. And that is exactly what we can learn from Bryan Peele, the Founder and President of the prestigious Estate Managers Coalition, a non-profit organization for professional estate managers. Apart from working as a professional estate manager himself, he ensures that EMC works to achieve its goals. To achieve its mission, EMC holds professional education events led by experts and monthly mixers with reputed guest speakers.

Let’s take a look into his insight into the world of the rich and the famous.


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Q1: To be successful in an industry, one must be passionate. How and why did you choose to work as an estate manager?

A1: I’m not able to do anything well unless I am passionate about it. Passion seems to be a common denominator in all that I do, and that passion is the most evident in my chosen profession as an estate manager and president of The Estate Managers Coalition. I fell into the world of estate management quite by accident after a challenging period of my life. I was at a crossroads professionally and a friend of a friend suggested an estate manager position. She said “estate manger,” but what I heard was “estate planner” and almost immediately said no, until she clarified exactly what the position entailed. It was entirely unanticipated and yet perfectly serendipitous, because I took the job and it was a perfect fit for me on so many levels. The rest is history.


Q2: Can you tell us a little bit about the mission and goals of the Estate Managers Coalition?

A2: EMC is a non-profit organization that acts as the authority on estate management and was created based on the standards of honesty, integrity and professionalism. We seek to promote higher professional standards, develop improved business models, enhance business conditions and promote the advancement of the industry as a whole. We lead by example and we give back to our community and members through community projects, networking and education. We hold monthly mixers for EMC members and corporate members, and we create Master Classes where our members can learn everything from the art of storing wine to caring for Frette linens.


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Q3: Like personal assistants and super-yacht captains, estate managers are extremely influential when it comes to purchasing decisions. Can you explain to luxury brands why UHNWI tend to listen to their key staff when it comes to making large purchase decisions?

A3: Estate Managers have their finger on the pulse of luxury and culture at all times, and we stay on top of trends so that our principals don’t have to. We wear many hats, and one of those hats is a 24-hour concierge. We know the hottest restaurants, travel destinations and luxury brands, and our principals rely on us to know what’s happening at any given moment. As a result of this responsibility, and once trust is established and maintained, principals will organically rely on their estate managers not only to maintain the lifestyle they live, but to elevate it as well. All estate managers are influencers and connectors and we always know how to find the best of the best.


Q4: Give us an example of a typical day as an estate manager and why you love your job.

A4: While no two days are typically the same for an estate manager, it’s still important to have an established foundation for each day, including a detailed house manual, trained supportive staff, and a multitude of spreadsheets and checklists that hold each member of the staff accountable for their respective “zones.”

I love this career for many reasons: 1) I am naturally adept at multi-tasking, and this job allows me to shine in that arena, 2) I feel that every day is greeted with a new set of challenges and obstacles, and being naturally resourceful, this allows me to utilize all of my skill sets, talents and connections to make someone’s life easier, and 3) It’s about being of service, and not to sound too cliche (but I will anyway), it was Gandhi who said “to truly learn how to be of service, one must lose oneself in service to others,” and I subscribe to that sentiment.


Q5: As an estate manager you have to know how to throw a great party. Any tips for creating an event that is memorable?

A5: To truly create a memorable event I start with a comprehensive understanding of the purpose and intent of the event. My belief is that less is more and that every great event starts with an event flow that I have created and outlines a distinct narrative with a beginning, middle and end. I develop themes based on my personal knowledge of the hosts, such as Black & Blue or 40s Cuba. From there, it’s all about hiring the best caterer, florist and staff to create a unique and distinctive event that will make people feel at home. Whenever I can create something special, I do, such as hiring a mixologist to create signature drinks for the event, or hiring a luxe valet service that leaves a white rose in each car at the time of departure. I believe that all of the little details add up to make a big impression.


Q6: In your opinion, is social media a great way to reach UHNWI and/or their estate managers? If so, which social network is used most often?

A6: The UHNWI’s I know and have worked with are not as active on social media, however, their estate managers are and they are a direct route to their principal and they are active influencers.


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Q7: It is often said that estate managers guard the door to the fortress pretty tight. For a brand that wants to work with estate managers in the hopes of reaching UHNWI, what is the best way to get noticed?

A7: The best way to get noticed is the same in every industry – access. Obtaining that access to UHNWI’s is where Estate Managers Coalition comes into play. At EMC, we connect estate managers and globally recognized luxury brands that see and understand the value of having direct access to estate managers. EMC holds monthly mixers, which includes corporate members who want to showcase their latest products or services and network with estate managers. Corporate members can apply to become a part of the Estate Managers Coalition and gain access to this exclusive group. As far as I know, there is no other organization or service that can deliver proven results and access like EMC.


Q8: According to your personal experience, in terms of marketing, what is the best way for a luxury brand to reach the UHNWI? Should they spend their money offline or online?

A8: It is my personal experience that the best way to reach the UHNWI is through relationships, so that would most definitely be offline. Good old-fashioned relationships that can be fostered and nurtured directly with the estate managers who wield purchasing power over their estates and principals. EMC is the ideal outlet for making those connections, and providing corporate members with the opportunity to showcase their products and services in front of estate managers at our monthly events. It is a small international community, so if you win over the estate managers first it will happen organically through their social media engagement. EM’s are all about discovering “the next best thing” for families, so once they find it they want to be the first to share with colleagues. It’s competitive, but friendly.


Q9: What does the future hold for you? And The Estate Managers Coalition?

A9: Personally, I love being an extended member of the family I represent at any given time. I give 100% at all times, and as long as they understand that it is a two-way street and take care of me in return, I am fulfilled. As for EMC, we are looking to expand to create a New York chapter in 2015 and a London chapter in 2016.



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Q10: As a last question, what is your personal definition of “luxury service?”

A10: To me, luxury service is service without being obvious that it’s service. It’s when things get executed flawlessly and performed with the synchronicity of a Rolex. That said, everything should be accomplished without the principals really ever knowing what is happening behind the scenes, it should appear seemingly effortless. Granted, the challenge is to always maintain the smile and cheerful disposition, which for me starts with gratitude for the job I currently have. If gratitude is my starting place each day it makes everything easier.

Want to get in touch with Bryan Peele? Connect with him on Facebook or Twitter, or reach out to us for an introduction.




Top 10 Real-World Luxury Influencers

Although a lot of luxury brands put emphasis on targeting digital influencers and HWNI directly, they should not forget the people who interact with HNWI on a regular day-to-day basis, the ones who exert influence on the HNWI's wallet.
With time, the relationship between HNWI and their staff becomes one founded on mutual trust and respect.

Although some luxury brands may think that they can simply "buy" the recommendation from a luxury influencer, from experience, such an advance can put you on an irrevocable black list. Brands must remember that these influencers will never do anything to put their relationship at harm's way. They have worked too hard to get the HNWI's high opinion.

Instead, a luxury brand should focus on establishing a trusting relationship with these influencers, one that is built on honesty and integrity. If you need assistance to approach luxury influencers, reach out to me, and in the meantime, read some of my thoughts on the top 10 real-world luxury influencers.

The Personal Assistant: As some of you may know from looking at my LinkedIn profile, I was once the personal assistant to several HNWI; therefore, I understand first-hand how influential a personal assistant can truly be - a lot. When I first started, I would go to my employer before making any decision. Then one day, he told me this: "Roxanne, I make about $100 every minute so make every minute between us count. If it's under $10,000, I don't want to hear about it, you make the call because that is why I need you. I simply don't have time to worry about the small stuff." This statement changed the way I have interacted with HNWI. They value time above money; they have plenty of money, but little time to enjoy it.

The Estate Manager/Butler/Majordomo: A good friend of mine is the estate manager to one of the wealthiest American businessmen, an older gentleman who relies on him for everything related to his day-to-day life. Rest assured that when this HNWI wants anything, whether it's a new superyacht or a gift for his wife, the first person he calls for a reference is indeed his estate manager.

The Private Concierge: The private concierge is the connector, the one with all the contacts in his little black book. Even though some HNWI have both a personal assistant and an estate manager, they often rely on a private concierge when looking to book VIP experiences. Personal assistants also count on private concierges to get the inside scoop when you need a quick connection. Getting on the first page of this little black book can mean getting in front of the customers you covet the most.

The Executive Assistant: Tasked with managing the calendar of an HNWI, the executive assistant is also often called upon for recommendations and trip planning especially if there is no personal assistant on staff. Having your contact details on their speed dial can be lucrative for any luxury brand.

The Superyacht Captain/ Superyacht Purser: Once a superyacht lead deckhand aboard yachts ranging from 150' to 220', I learned firsthand how HNWI rely on the expertise of their captain, purser and crew for recommendations. On a superyacht, it's a team effort, but it is usually the Captain who books on-shore activities such as restaurants, spa treatments, private transportation and even hotel or villa stays.

The Private Jet Flight Attendant: When high up in the air, a private jet flight attendant is often summoned for recommendations as to where to go eat, shop or play at the upcoming destination. HNWI understand that their knowledge of luxury experiences goes far beyond serving a fine cognac on the rocks.

The Personal Shopper: When it comes to fashion, not everyone can create that stylist look. HNWI individuals often rely on personal shoppers/stylist when it's time to revamp their wardrobe. Therefore, if you represent an up-and-coming fashion brand, you may want to keep on your radar the personal shoppers/stylists in your city.

The Personal Trainer: In between pumps and squats, personal trainers are a great source of information when it comes to getting the right advice on health products, active gear, food related items or restaurant recommendations. If this is your market, think of working closely with personal trainers.

The Private Chef: When it comes to food, the private chef often makes all the dietary calls. They typically stock the fridge and cupboards with all the goodies needed, therefore getting them to taste your high-end product can get your brand in the HNWI's household.

The Interior Decorator: Once again, when an HNWI plans to remodel their villas, superyacht or even private jet, the interior decorator is often the one who spends all the money.

When thinking of your next influencer campaign, concentrate your efforts on building relationship with both digital and real-world luxury influencers. Together, they can put your brand in front of your targeted audience.


How to Compensate Luxury Influencers

A luxury influencer writes a great review about your product, rakes in a lot of support for your marketing campaign, alters the buying decision of his audience towards your luxury product while maintaining integrity and authenticity. The message is not "crafted" or controlled by your marketing team; therefore it resonates within the community as an opinion that is valued. As a general rule, a blog post from an influential blogger or social media leader is more trusted than a marketing campaign promoted with banners, commercials and gimmicks. Why? Because the influencer is trusted as a valuable source of information while the marketing campaign is simply seen as what it is - a way to lure consumers to spend money on your products.

Although not everyone will agree, if a luxury influencer generates a lot of awareness for your brand or products, you should let them know that their services are appreciated by finding the best way to compensate them. Saying this, you should not attempt to "buy" the love of an influencer, but simply compensate for the valuable work done. Influencers, most of the anyway, want to be noticed, appreciated and rewarded for writing influential posts.

The best way to reward influencers is by first thinking about what motivates them, finding more about their interests and making sure that the relationship is not all about money. Offering a reward that is both commercial and non-commercial will help you create friendships rather than just pure commercial relationships.

So what are the best ways to compensate luxury influencers?

Financially: Although most influencers will ask for some kind of appreciation and recognition, some of them might be a little offended if you offer them money through your initial conversation. The best way to decide on whether to pay or not an influencer is to first ask them about their editorial and marketing solutions for luxury brands. If the influencer sends you a price list, then you should understand that blogging/social media is a business - it's about the money. However, if you get a request to experience your product first hand, then don't offend with money - it's about the experience.

Shout-Outs: Since your influencers write about your brand and products in their blogs or profiles, you can reciprocate their efforts by sharing their posts about you in your social media outlets. When you share their posts on your wall, it will make them feel important and recognized. A short tweet or a comment about their influential post will do wonders for their site’s traffic. Once the campaign is over, continue to engage with them socially to strengthen the relationship.

Product Rewards: Giving away your luxury products is another great way of rewarding the work done by your influencers. Remember to give the influencer the choice to select amongst a few products, making feel like part of your team.

Giveaways - Contests: Giveaways and contests are also a time-tested way to appreciate the audience of your influencers. Partner up with them for a social media campaign that will beneficial to both influencer and brand.

Unique Experience: Offer your influencers unique experiences such as inviting them for a complimentary hotel stay, a dinner experience or to an exclusive event. Become offline friends then take the relationship back to digital.

Content: Everyone wants insider information about top brands, and your influencers are no different. Offer your influencers some information about forthcoming products, VIP events, and more. Make your influencers feel important.

Product Discounts: Offering product discounts is a really old method of garnering public interest, and its charm hasn’t waned even in the social media days. Offer your influencers a discount on their favorite luxury item, but remember to make the offer really alluring - 5-10% probably won't cut it.

Remember this: if you want luxury influencers to promote your brand and products, play by their rules and offer something irresistible. Stand out from the mass by getting to know them and listening to their needs.