Do loyalty programs work for luxury brands? It’s a fair question. The usual suspects of discounts and coupons don’t exactly scream high-end, but not to worry -- loyalty programs come in all shapes and sizes. In this blog post, we’re taking a closer look at some alternative strategies for luxury brands to leverage in order to motivate their customers to spend more and more frequently.
First things first -- what is clienteling? Back in the day it was common to have a personal relationship with the local butcher, baker or what have you. You’d be greeted by first name when you walked in the door, and the person behind the counter would already be packaging your favorite cut of meat or loaf of bread. Nowadays, that type of service and those types of personal relationships between customers and brands are more the exception than the rule. At the most basic level, clienteling is the idea of treating customers like you’ve known them forever in order to establish long-lasting loyalty. Clienteling is about making your customers’ lives easier through customer service and a great experience.
I’m a marketer (for a company that makes software for other marketers), but I’m also a consumer. The two sides are intertwined. For better or for worse, I can’t turn the marketer off while I shop. The marketer side of me is always taking mental notes about customer engagement wins and missed opportunities and thinking about what is going on behind the scenes at a company to cause their customer experience to soar or flop. I shop a lot, so there are abundant examples to choose from. However, there’s one company that stands out from the pack time and time again: Shopbop. I wish other companies would take a page out of Shopbop’s customer engagement book. That’s why I’m putting my love story down on paper in an effort to help less fortunate brands find their happy ending.
If you live in a world of penny profit the way grocers do, you can't afford to discount to people willing to pay full price. You also need to drive in footsteps to buy product that is literally perishable.
Retail is not dead. Not even mostly dead as they said in The Princess Bride.