Monday, May 24, 2010

Consistently finding Affluent new owners the Holy Grail of Thoroughbred racing.

There are many legends surrounding the search for the Holy Grail with Chrétien de Troyes Arthurian anecdote being probably the most recognizable. According to the story Arthur’s knights searched for many years before Perceval found it at the abode of the Fisher King.

In the business of buying and selling race horses being able to consistently attract new affluent owners is akin to finding the Holy Grail. Quite obviously the affluent are the Holy Grail because not only do they have the means to pay a premium for quality horses they also have the means to pay all the bills.

But ask most within the Thoroughbred community and they’ll tell you that consistently attracting the affluent is just as difficult as finding the Holy Grail. They’ll tell you things like “until we get our house in order attracting new owners will be difficult.” Or, if it were easy then racing wouldn't be in the decline that it is. 

But what if I told you the affluent fit not only the financial but also the personality demographic to become owners?  Here are some facts about affluent males which back up my statements:

1) Lamborghini’s sell from 240k to 1.4million yet the 1.4mill sell out fastest and have the longest waiting list. Myth: women buy with emotion men buy with logic. Truth: women mature, men just get older. 

2) Men spend a lot of money on symbolic validation on their success, status, and prosperity. Example men aren’t clotheshorses they would shop at Wal-Mart but will train themselves to appreciate fashion in a means of self-validation. This buying for validation – what the are suppose to buy, where their suppose to patronize – extends to almost every product and service.

3) Status for men is more of a matter of competition and comparison. Affluent men will compete fiercely against other within their class for status through things like best new toy.

4) They seek approval, recognition, respect – some from only their peers others from the world at large all from those they do business with.

OK so let’s look at the facts: the affluent will spend big bucks to show off their success while competing against each other to gain respect. If this doesn’t scream Thoroughbred race horse owner then you’re not paying attention.  

A few more tidbits of information, at last count there were more than 11 million households with an annual income of one to nine million dollars. The ultra-affluent (defined as an annual income of over nine million) who also fit the demographic profile spend even more extravagantly. Some examples of their spending habits are that they spend on an average annual basis 30k on wine, 200k on jewelry, and 250k on clothes.  

The facts are that there is a huge untapped market of new affluent owners. They have the money, they fit the demographic profile so why aren’t they owners? Perhaps those charged with finding them don't know where to look or how to attract them. 

That's the real trick knowing where to look and how to market to them. I have spent over twenty years in the field of marketing and sales with much of that time being dedicated to becoming an expert in selling to the affluent.  I would be glad to speak with anyone who would like to learn how to find that Holy Grail. If you're interested in expanding your business you can contact me at:

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