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Have you ever found yourself impulsively snagging that Levi's denim jacket, all because a timely push notification on your phone offered an irresistible discount tailored to your taste? Can you recall a moment when a brand's personalised message, tuned to your buying preferences, not only caught your attention but had you reaching for your wallet? Imagine the power of Customer Relationship Management (CRM) in creating such moments—where your favourite brand seems to read your mind and turns each notification into a curated fashion discovery. Can you envision picking a garment not just for its style, but for the experience that came with it, all thanks to the strategic mastery of CRM?
CRM is an amalgamation of strategies and techniques that fashion brands use to manage relationships and interact with their existing and potential customers. The idea is to understand the customer's needs and build a rapport with them in order to have an edge over the competition present in the market. For instance, categorically defining a customer’s buying pattern and in turn, designing relevant incentives, discounts, coupons, customised messages, or gifting strategies. The basic agenda of CRM is to collect data, create personalised experiences, build customer loyalty and retain them for a longer duration.
The collection of data becomes crucial in CRM. Fashion merchandisers collect and analyse data from various sources, such as e-commerce platforms, EBO’s, MBO’s, social media platforms and other relevant channels. Based on this collected data, it is inferred and the output is customised to improve customer satisfaction and retention. This enables CRM-centric fashion brands, fashion designers , retailers and D2C to have an edge over other brands which may not focus on CRM.
In the world of fashion, using Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is crucial for effective brand promotion. Here are seven ways brands successfully use CRM to promote their brand:
Better Customer Loyalty: If the brand understands customers’ preferences and delivers customised incentives, surely the loyalty and satisfaction of customers will improve towards the brand. For instance, at Myntra if a customer shops regularly and the buy value is comparatively higher than an average customer, in turn Myntra offers an Insider program with an early access to its sale events, new season launches, higher/additional discounts which ensure higher conversion & enables the customer to stay engrossed to the platform.
Better understanding of Customer Behaviour: By using the data collected at all touchpoints, the CRM tool helps understand customer preferences and purchasing patterns. What demographics of shops at what price points and preferences of trade channels will help brands push merchandise on the selective touchpoint? For instance, if a brand understands these, then certain merchandise can only be pushed to a particular channel to reach targeted audiences.
Every fashion brand CRM tool is implemented at various touch points, such as e-commerce websites, social media, and retail outlets. This helps collect relevant data and establish the basis on which strategies are implemented to create a long-term relationship with its consumers.
Building customer loyalty in fashion merchandising is a process which focuses on creating meaningful connections to sustain long term relationships through strategic approach and consistent engagement. Here are some ways to make customers loyal towards a fashion brand:
Surprising customers with gifts and gestures is another effective strategy to foster loyalty towards a particular brand. For example, Tanishq offering an 18% discount to its most valued customers upon completing 18 years in the industry serves as a thoughtful way to provide surprises and show appreciation to its customer base.
Collecting feedback from customers who regularly shop from a fashion brand is crucial for gaining insights and fostering long-term customer relationships. For example, Van Heusen Woman conducts sessions with focus groups to gather feedback on the likes and dislikes of the brand. This proactive approach helps to keep customers engaged and committed to the brand over an extended period.
Fashion merchandisers setting up CRM software/ tools at the retail outlet or the backend of the website all come with challenges. Here are some challenges faced by merchandisers/ CRM experts:
Myntra is a marketplace for fashion and lifestyle brands in India. The platform focuses on merchandise like clothing, shoes and accessories. It has also started focusing on beauty and personal care products. Below are the basic customer relationship marketing processes and methodologies applied at Myntra.
Certainly, as technology and consumer behaviour evolve, CRM (customer relationship management) in the fashion industry will continue to adapt. Here are some ways in which CRM is expected to expand in the future:
In summary, CRM in the fashion industry is not only about managing customer data by Fashion Merchandisers or CRM Expert but is also about using that data strategically to create campaigns, and personalised messages, create better experiences to build loyalty, and have long term commitment relationships to retain customers for repeat sales and generate revenue.
Explore More About Fashion Business Management
- Loved reading this piece? Author Shraddha Kochar has also written about the importance of a bachelor's degree in fashion design to make a successful career. In another vein, she talks about the 5Rs of fashion merchandising.
- Have you been looking for some interesting reads about fashion business management? Checkout this handpicked comprehensive list of the top 10 books on fashion business management.
- Are you looking to build a career in fashion business management? Checkout these top 10 career options for fashion management graduates.
- Learn about the art of personal branding from this insightful tete-a-tete between Prof. Usha Nehru Patel, Director-Academics and Shifa Firoz, Celebrity Stylist.
Hi! I am Shraddha Kochar, I was born, raised, and have completed my education in Delhi. I have been in the fashion industry for the last 7+ years, with varied experience working in startups, national brands, e-commerce, exports and education secto ...
r. I like travelling and exploring places for food. I landed in the education sector very mystically, and since then there is no looking back. I enjoy reading about fashion & lifestyle brands, fiction, fitness, personal finance and philosophy. Keeping in mind the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s) , I am trying to become a conscious and aware human.
Please do ensure that no revisions are required in the formatting this time. Should you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out to me.
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