From the literature, luxury brands are defined by Maxine Berg as high-design, high-quality goods. Chadha and Husband narrowed the definition, luxury brands made the fashionable consumer goods include leather goods: Louis Vuitton bags, High-quality clothes: Prada clothes, Carter watches, Tiffany jewelry. (Chadha & Husband, 2006).These definitions which were defined by Chadha and Husband are acceptable, because the brands they mentioned are well-known luxurious products. However, there are limitations in these definitions, luxurious product not only contains fashionable wearable goods, and it includes cars, alcohol, vacations as well. (Leon G Schiffman Leslie Lazar Kanuk, 2004).
The characteristics of luxurious products are discussed by several authors.Berry (1994) demonstrated luxurious goods is an attribute of wealth and social position. Cole-Gutierrez, C. (2006) figured out luxurious products are attractive because it is unique looks valuable. The third trait is luxurious goods represents personal style. Such as, Mercedes Benz is to seek top quality; Rolls-Royce is famous for hand working, Cadillac pursuits luxurious. (Hauck, W. E., & Stanforth, N. 2007).
The motivation of consuming luxurious goods in China had already been studied. Through the literature, the reasons can be summarized as: Firstly, Chinese consumers are attracted by luxurious products because luxurious goods can represent their status and wealth. (Debnam & Svinos, 2006; Thomas, 2007). Second, from the cultural view, Chinese people like to pay attention to ‘face project', consuming luxurious brands can improve the face. (Danziger, 2005; Debnam & Svinos, 2006).Thirdly, Chinese people is motivated to buy luxurious goods because luxurious brands represent good taste. (Chadha & Husband, 2006).Fourthly, because luxurious goods are high-designed, Chinese people wants to buy the product to make them more attractive, this motivation may be suitable to all consumers. Fifthly, because of the Asian economic crisis in late 1990s,people in Asia likely to be” bargain hunters”, but, Chinese people still like to spend money on such expensive product. (Thomas, 2007).The last one is similar with the second reason: face. Chinese people like to buy luxurious product as a gift to another person so that can increase the sender's face. (Thomas, 2007).However, the literatures about the motivation of luxurious goods are concerned about the common motivation in China, they haven't mentioned some specific group's motivation, that is this research's objective to research 80s generation's motivation of consuming luxurious goods in China.
The luxury market in China had been anal sized in several literatures. According a predict report about the future of luxury market in China during 2010-2015,In the 21st century, the consumption on luxurious goods in European countries starts to decline. Some countries such as China, Russia, and India become the main consumption area of the world luxurious products. In the world market, China is the second largest consumer of luxurious goods. HEDRICK-WONG, (2007) described the development of market in China and from the historic view, analyzed different generations' perspectives on luxurious market, what is important is the younger generation in China, which is born after 1980s .He summarized the characteristics of 80s:”the best educated, most confident, Self-centered, frequently self-indulgent “(Hedrick-Wong 2007, p. 37-40).
According to Hedrick-Wong (2007, p48) there is a report about the percentage of Chinese affluent consumer in different ages.
The figure shows Chinese people who are below the age of 40 shares the most, nearly 62% people are during the age of 25-35.That means people who are born around 1980s is the most affluent consumers and can be the main market of luxurious goods. Hedrick-Wong (2007) is interested in this majority group. He also did a research about the education level of this group's members.
The figure shows people in this group who is study at university or higher educational level such as post-graduate share the 65% and especially the students in university who get 53%. Because of this situation, this research is to find out the motivation of consuming luxurious products by people who are 1980s generation, especially in university.
1. HEDRICK-WONG, Yuwa, 2007, Succeeding like success: The affluent consumer of Asia, John Wiley & Sons (Asia), Singapore
2. HEDRICK-WONG, Yuwa, 2008, The future and me: Power of the youth market in Asia, John Wiley & Sons (Asia), Singapore
3. Berry, C. J. (1994). The idea of luxury: a conceptual historical investigation. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press
4. Chadha, R., & Husband, P. (2006). The cult of the luxury brand: Inside Asia's love affair with luxury. London: Nicholas Brealey International.
5. Cole-Gutierrez, C. (2006). Consumer attraction to luxury brand products: social affiliation in terror management theory. California State University, Long Beach, CA.
6. Hauck, W. E., & Stanforth, N. (2007). Cohort perception of luxury goods and services. Journal of Fashion Marketing and Management, 11(2), 175-188.
6. Debnam, N., & Svinos, G. (2006). Luxury brands in China. Hong Kong: KPMG.
7. Thomas, D. (2007). Deluxe: How luxury lost its luster. New York, NY: ThePenguin Press.
7. Danziger, P. N. (2005). Let them eat cake: Marketing luxury to the masses - as well as the classes. Chicago, IL: Dearborn Trade Publishing.