Luxury and Sustainability

New purpose for beloved brands
Dr. Murat Balak | Dr. Franziska Ferdinand | Jens D. Kotnik | Markus Gold
Sep 2023 | Strategy Paper | English

Luxury and Sustainability

New purpose for beloved brands

The concept of luxury has evolved, as customer demands have noticeably changed over time. In this context, the concepts of luxury and sustainability are becoming more intertwined than ever before, sharing common dimensions such as an explicit focus on quality, craftsmanship, innovation, and strong brand values.

This Strategy Paper outlines the increasing importance of incorporating sustainability aspects in a brand’s strategy, particularly for luxury brands. The sustainability orientation is thereby measured across four stages, indicating the level of commitment and engagement in sustainable practices. Overall, implementing sustainability in a brand’s strategy requires careful planning for optimal positioning, authenticity, transparency, and independent monitoring.

67%

of customers will pay more for sustainable products.

4

stages of sustainability orientation help companies assess their sustainability brand positioning.

5

essential questions support brands to increase their sustainability performance

Management Summary
  • In order to respond to growing consumer demand, luxury brands are increasingly incorporating authentic sustainability initiatives into their core values and business practices.
  • Despite their apparent contradictions, luxury and sustainability share common dimensions, such as an explicit focus on quality, craftsmanship, innovation, and strong brand values.
  • Implementing sustainability in a brand’s strategy requires careful planning for optimal positioning, authenticity, transparency, and independent monitoring.
  • Greenwashing poses serious risks to a company’s reputation, customer trust, and legal standing, necessitating proactive sustainability efforts and genuine approaches to sustain the changing demands of the respective industry.

Read the whole Strategy Paper now

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