December 1, 2015

Want to Give Back to Your Customers? Here’s How Two Companies Are Doing It Right

Customers that are fiercely loyal to a brand (I’m looking at you, Mom, who still ONLY buys Quilted Northern™ toiletries), can become that company’s biggest advocate and largest referral source. So it’s no wonder that a business’s existing customer base should be the group of people that a brand focuses most of its efforts on. Here are two examples of companies – one large business and one small business –that I think are doing it right:

Lululemon – This activewear company hailing from Vancouver knows how to maintain a loyal following. Though their wearables are expensive, they know what it takes to get – and keep – customers, and they do all that they can to make their walking brand ambassadors (yogis, gym rats, soccer moms and dads, and the list goes on) feel appreciated.

Every week, most Lululemon locations host free fitness classes to strengthen their relationships within each community. From yoga to spin, the stores offer the classes not to sell more clothing (though I’m sure that’s a nice “consequence” of getting people in the store), but to enhance the customers’ relationships with the brand.

Plus, their new flagship store that opened two weeks ago in the Flatiron district of NYC is pretty rad. According to Racked, “Nearly half of the space is dedicated to community space and [the shop] offers a concierge service that can do anything from messenger packages home (for free), make dinner reservations, or book a spot at an exercise class.”

Vocabulary Boutique in Little Italy, San Diego – Last but certainly not least, I wanted to spotlight a small but mighty shop right here in our hometown. The Olive PR Solutions office is lucky (but unlucky for our wallets!) to be right next door to this lovely boutique; the owner, Cecelia Church, has thoughtfully curated a collection of items – from women and men’s clothing to home décor and accessories – that is just beautiful.

As a way to give back to her community, she often hosts little surprise “pop-up” events that consist of champagne, cocktails, plenty of delicious appetizers, and sometimes a hefty discount on anything you purchase that night. No, she doesn’t expect you to buy anything, but who doesn’t want to nibble on snacks and sip bubbly while they browse? Recently, I found a pair of jeans that I adored (that she was offering for 30% off that evening only) but they didn’t have my size. Cecelia ordered them for me, texted me when they arrived AND still honored the 30% discount to me when I returned two weeks later to purchase them. Now that’s customer service!

What brands do you love that treat their customers right? Share your favorites – local or national – in a comment below!