Do your liquid assets exceed E10 million? Does your fleet of cars include a Mercedes? Do you enjoy polo, yachting or golf?
If so, Leon Hustinx has very likely tried to sell you a Maybach. As marketing director for Daimler-Chrysler's new super-luxury sedan, Hustinx is refining the art of "event marketing" to sell the car.
His strategy: one must use a face-to-face sales pitch to sell a super-luxury car like Maybach. His lure: VIP presentations during prestigious sporting events like golf tournaments at St. Andrews, yacht races in Hamburg and winter polo in St. Moritz. So far, it's worked. To date, 1,000 customers have ordered Maybachs.
Meanwhile, Bentley has received 3,000 deposits for the new Continental GT, and Rolls-Royce says its new E320,000 Phantom has drawn an enthusiastic response. (See story on Page 3).
Indeed, all three super-luxury brands are relying heavily on event marketing to promote themselves. Traditional mass-market advertising simply cannot reach these people.
Consider these statistics: An estimated 40,000 individuals in Europe and North America have a personal wealth of $30 million (E27.9 million) or more, according to the World Wealth Report, a document compiled annually by Cap Gemini Ernst & Young and Merrill Lynch.
These people are considered the most likely prospects for a super-luxury car. Of those, perhaps 8,000 are in the market in any given year to buy a new vehicle.
How does one approach these wealthy consumers?