Q: Who are your publication’s readers?
A: The magazine is targeted to the affluent male. Our readers have an average household income of $412,000 and a net worth of $4 million, including their primary residence. We have a loyal subscriber base. Most are in the U.S., but we have a base of international readers, with versions of the Robb Report in Turkey, China, and Russia.
We have a lot of visibility in airports because our audience travels a lot. Outside of work, they are connoisseurs of a specific item or field and are usually collectors.
Q: Do you cover housing and real estate in the magazine?
A: We do a lot of home design and real estate coverage. Many of our readers have the means to purchase second, third, or more homes. We help them understand what is happening in the market geographically, style-wise, and by type of investment such as a single-family house, destination club, niche community, equestrian community, beach resort, or high-rise living.
They almost always renovate when they purchase a property. This audience knows what they want. Our job is to help guide them to the best finishes, and best architects, designers, and builders.
Q: What are your readers’ goals for remodeling projects?
A: They are looking for someone who can help translate and execute their vision. This audience overwhelmingly loves their builders — quality of craftsmanship is a huge factor in their decisions.
A very important part of the building and remodeling industry for this audience is using technology to monitor all their houses. Each owner differs in how often they want to be contacted — you have to be prepared to provide daily updates.
People love to make a home their own. Remodeling is like a hobby for them. I had one homeowner tell me that every time he buys a plane, his wife has to buy and redo a house.
Q: What is the high-end client’s biggest issue with contractors?
A: Trust. They have their core group of consultants, and once they find someone they trust and whose work they admire, they stay with that person. It can take time to build this trust. They require workers to sign privacy agreements. But once you are approved, this group is good at networking and will refer you to associates.
Q: What marketing advice would you offer remodelers?
A: Websites are very important. They should be clean and elegant. You don’t need a bunch of bells and whistles. These clients have little time to weed through something they can’t understand, and they lose patience quickly.
Q: What trends have you seen in the luxury housing market?
A: When there’s a downturn, people start thinking more long-term. We’ve heard homeowners talking about setting up homes for themselves and their children and extended family so more people can enjoy what they have worked so hard for.
They are not thinking of the house as an investment to sell, but as more of an emotional buy in wanting to pass it down to the next generations.
This ties into the other big movement: green. No matter your economic background, you want to be healthy and be around to enjoy what you have worked for.
This audience loves to shop, we do see them picking out their own fittings and finishes. I’ve heard many stories of people hopping on a private jet to purchase materials, such as flying to Bali to pick out a door or searching for a 1930s lamp in Paris. They are an adventurous group. Be prepared for the unexpected. And make it fun.