How Gen Z Aspirations Are Driving Modern Luxury Watch Growth

Through their aspirations and dreams, Gen Z are reviving the Luxury Watch Industry

How Gen Z Aspirations Are Driving Modern Luxury Watch Growth
Yaseen Dockrat

In a world that is driven by the latest tech, it would seem as though digital, or fitness watches would be at the forefront of watch sales, and that may also be the case. However, in recent years, the luxury watch industry has seen significant growth coming from Gen Z and Millennials.

As opposed to previous generations that appreciated luxury timepieces, Gen Z seek something somewhat different. Instead of buying old luxury, Gen Z is looking toward different factors when choosing which timepiece to go with. Data shows that these new generation watch buyers are instead looking for the new symbols attached to luxury timepieces.

Younger and more globally connected consumers are looking towards watch purchases as a sense of stability, but also seek there to be transparency and the choice of personalization. Due to this, high-end watch manufacturers are turning to new product launches, while using digital sales and marketing channels to entice their new clients. Some brands have even looked at vintage-inspired designs, while others continue to form partnerships with influencers around the world.

Studies around the world prove that new-age consumers would prefer purchasing an analogue watch to the latest digital smartwatch. In some parts of the world, namely Italy and China, younger consumers would prefer to purchase a luxury mechanical timepiece instead of the latest smartwatch. They would even do this year over a ten-year period.

There is also the fact that in recent times luxury watches have become lifestyle items. The same group of Gen Z watch buyers who would choose a luxury watch over a smartwatch would instead choose Rolex, Audemars Piguet, Patek Philippe or Richard Mille. These four brands are the trailblazers in this area, making their way into the streetwear and fashion scene, according to studies.

One of the reasons that analogue watches are becoming increasingly popular is the fact that the younger generation is taking more and more off-screen time. A Gen Z user would prefer to take some offscreen time, and this is where the analogue watch comes in. you can tell time without notifications from WhatsApp or emails.

Another of the main reasons that the luxury watch industry has grown, is because modern luxury watches allow for customization. Higher End spenders who are making enough to buy watches prefer to have a personalized piece. This is where collabs and customizations are important. A Rolex or AP watch customized by Jacob & Co. is a unique iteration, it delivers self-expression and individualization. On the other hand, younger generation consumers are also looking toward elegance and simplicity, as they embrace a new modern interpretation of luxury. An example of a brand in this category is Nomos Glashuette. Nomos places a great emphasis on craftsmanship and quality but instead of marketing their pieces with old school opulence of traditional luxury watches, the brand casts a bright, colourful, and minimalist aesthetic. That is – as opposed to old school opulence, the brand places an emphasis on personalisation and a sense of adventure.

This new drive and growth are coercing watchmakers to join e-commerce and digital sales. While consumers look for analogue watches, they turn to digital media when looking to purchase, and therefore on and offline marketing campaigns may prove the best route for luxury watch manufacturers.