Chanel tops a new ranking that aimed to gauge brand equity, including expertise and emotional connection with consumers. According to the Luxury Institute’s annual “Emotionally Intelligent Brand Index,” Chanel beat out Christian Dior, Gucci, Hermès, and Saint Laurent, among other brands, in connection with a survey of over 1,200 individual with a minimum of $150,000 annual household income. Fellow Paris-based brand Louis Vuitton nabbed the second-place spot on the Luxury Institute’s list.
The New York-based Luxury Institute found that among its sample of affluent U.S. consumers, Chanel is overall the most emotionally intelligent brand followed closely by Louis Vuitton, a title driven primarily by the two elements of brand expertise: Quality of products and customer service experience. Chanel ranks among the top two contenders for quality of merchandise and is ranked most highly for its customer service experience.
On the elements that drive human bonds and emotional connection, “Chanel, like most of the luxury fashion brands, slides down the scale,” according to the Luxury Institute. “In empathy (understanding a client’s needs) Chanel ranks #7. On trustworthiness (serving the client’s interests first) Chanel ranks #3. On generosity (demonstrating generosity and kindness to its employees, clients and society at large) Chanel is ranked #13.”
Stella McCartney, on the other hand – the London-based brand whose offerings are devoid of any leather, fur, skins or feathers (in line with McCartney’s position as “a lifelong vegetarian”) – landed in the #17 on quality of products and #6 in customer service experience, but ranked #1 in empathy, #4 in trustworthiness, and #1 in generosity and kindness.
“Today affluent consumers across all generations, but especially Millennials, think of brands as organic, living entities comprised of the purpose, values and behaviors of the people who lead them and who represent them at the front lines, across any channel,” says Milton Pedraza, CEO of the Luxury Institute.
“A brand, today, is known well beyond its products. Just as with individuals, if a brand today cannot deliver more than expertise and deeply lacks emotional intelligence, or simply has an emotional intelligence deficit that is clear to clients, it is at a distinct disadvantage in the probability of long-term success or even survival.”