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Boost The Bottom Line for Clothing Stores by Partnering with the Right Marketing Vendor

Lori Stafford Thomas

As a local or regional clothing store, you're likely familiar with who the competition is. Larger brands and retailers can offer more brands, but your unique selection is a primary market differentiator. While you have to remain flexible and agile in today's business landscape, you also have to focus on continually serving customers' needs. Otherwise, you'll find it hard to keep pace with your competition.

Loyalty in clothing retail remains a prominent driver in bottom line gains, but that's not to say a local merchant can't acquire new customers and secure their allegiance with the right marketing plan. Acquisition isn't easy, but reaching the right clientele with an optimized outreach campaign can help create new business. There's a large amount of money to be made if you can get customers through more personalized marketing. In fact, according to recent Accenture data, the potential revenue up for grabs due to changes in consumer spending and switching among brands and providers is $1.6 trillion (1).

Partner up with the right marketing vendor
For clothing retailers that are looking to improve loyalty and acquisition, partnering with the right marketing vendor should be a top priority. Using back-end customer data from a point-of-sale system is a good way to get to know your customers, but investing in your own client communication can dramatically help improve overall revenue. Data analytics companies and marketing firms specialize in helping you find out who your customers really are, where they like to shop and what the best way to reach them is.

It's important to reach consumers on channels and platforms they use, but it's equally as critical to engage in a meaningful way. Relevant offers will help drive recurring revenue, not continual discounts and sales. According to a National Business Research Institute survey, 62 percent of U.S. shoppers join loyalty programs for the discounts, but just 36 percent actually get the rewards they signed up for. Another 27 percent never receive rewards at all. 

By partnering with a marketing vendor and using POS data to identify your customers, you can better understand what they want and how to best reach them. While some small businesses see marketing as an outbound expense, it should be thought more of as an investment in your clothing store. If you get to know who your customers are and what they want, your business can reach out in more meaningful ways.

If you show that you took the time to understand their buying habits and preferences, there's a greater chance the consumer will become brand loyal. The same NBRII study found that 70 percent of buying decisions are made on an emotional basis, so by connecting with customers on a deeper and more relevant level, you'll likely improve your sales and overall capital gains. Small businesses that partner with the right marketing vendor can mine the right data and leverage it to their advantage in terms of creating effective customer outreach.

1. Accenture, http://www.accenture.com/us-en/Pages/insight-digital-improve-customer-experience.aspx (Jan. 21, 2015)

2. National Business Research Institute, https://www.nbrii.com/blog/customer-loyalty-what-it-is-and-why-its-important/ (2015)

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