What group of Americans is concerned enough about wealth inequality that they actively provide financial support to poverty programs and educational opportunities for low-income children – and support a higher minimum wage and more taxes on the rich?
The answer: millionaires.
Surprised? You shouldn’t be. As I’ve written before, affluent consumers are the least understood segment in the U.S. economy. Marketers of high-end brands need to understand these critical insights into the mindset and values of affluent consumers in order to succeed.
Too many marketers believe that affluent Americans have circled the wagons, selfishly protecting their own interests at the expense of larger society. That’s simply not the case. If you understand that most affluent Americans come from humble beginnings, created their own wealth, and still consider themselves middle class at heart, then you can begin to see how they view critical issues such as wealth inequality.
In a recent study by PNC Wealth Management, 64% of millionaires surveyed expressed concern about economic inequality in the U.S., with approximately half of those respondents indicating that they are extremely concerned. Interestingly, as CNBC’s Robert Frank pointed out, “millionaires see themselves as part of the solution to inequality rather than a cause.” That’s telling.
Approximately half of the respondents support raising the minimum wage and more millionaires support raising taxes on the top income earners than those who oppose. Two-thirds support initiatives focused on hunger and poverty.
“These findings show the wealthy realize that our society is better when everyone is in the game and earning—and that economic inequality can have negative consequences,” said Thomas P. Melcher, executive vice president and head of Hawthorn, PNC’s family office.
These insights should help you better understand the affluent consumers who buy your brands. The question is: how fully in tune with them are you?
If you’d like to learn more about the PNC, click here.