Married wealthy women on average make almost two-thirds (64%) of a family’s purchase decisions, according to a Luxury Institute survey of women from households with $150,000 or more in annual income.
“Winning over wealthy women is a do-or-die proposition for companies in industries as varied as travel, healthcare, financial services and home improvement,” said Milton Pedraza, CEO, the Luxury Institute. “Education is a big ingredient: 88% of wealthy women hold at least a bachelor’s degree and 35% have a master’s.”
Marriott, Hilton, Visa and Home Depot stand out for their skill in marketing to wealthy women – each earned an unaided mention from 7% of respondents for being companies that do the best job of marketing to wealthy women.
Among other findings of the survey:
- Women hold particular sway over home appliance and travel spending: in 68% of wealthy households, the matriarch has the final word on ovens, ranges, and refrigerators; 61% of them make the family’s vacation decisions.
- Healthcare decisions, including choice of plans and providers, are the domain of women in 48% of wealthy households, and nearly half (48%) call the shots on home improvement purchases.
- In financial affairs, too, the female influence is significant: 22% of married wealthy women make all of the family’s investment decisions on their own; another two-thirds report making financial decisions jointly; and 46% choose the family’s bank accounts.
- Choice of automobiles and consumer electronics fall to the female in 40% of wealthy households.
- Women control their family’s real estate purchase in 31% of households.
The driving force behind the spending power of wealthy women is often their own money:
- 72% work on at least a part-time basis and 54% work full-time. Most are well compensated for their efforts, with 60% earning at least $100,000 a year.
- The median annual income of working wealthy women is $124,000.
- One-third hold jobs at the vice-president level or higher;? 22% hold managerial positions. 12% serve on a board of directors.