How the Other 18 Percent Live

Post-recession Realities for the Affluent and Luxury Marketers
  • Matt Carmichael


LOGIC WOULD DICTATE THAT IF YOU HAVE A PRODUCT TO SELL, PITCHING IT to people who can afford it would be a good place to start. Thus the concept of “mass affluence” has become appealing to marketers in recent years. Simply put, in the growth period leading up to the recession, a growing upper middle class seemed to be forming with people both aspiring to luxury living and actually achieving it. Marketers and researchers dubbed them the “mass affluent.” It was an easy concept to believe in because who wouldn’t want to think that more and more people were prospering (or wanted to appear as though they were) and would then spend more and more on nicer and nicer things?


Middle Class Housing Market Modern Family Luxury Brand Luxury Item 
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  1. 6.
    Amy O’Leary, “What Is Middle Class in Manhattan?” New York Times, January 18,2013.Google Scholar
  2. 13.
    Matt Carmichael, “More Cash for Marketers to Chase as Savings Rate Drops,” Advertising Age, December 5,2011.Google Scholar
  3. 15.
    Lee Barney, “34% of Americans Have No Retirement Savings,” Financial, February 3, 2011.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Matt Carmichael 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Matt Carmichael

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