Interview: The Fashion Industry’s Advantage in the Recession

Despite the shaky economy, there is hope for brands in the fashion industry. Marlena Półrola explains the advantages of loyalty programs in the clothing industry, benefiting companies, customers, and employees alike.

Marlena Półrola works in loyalty management at Comarch, specializing in the fashion industry (and, in her own words, a “shopaholic by nature"). According to her, a well-thought-out and long-term approach to loyalty and customer care is a factor that has benefited the fashion industry during the pandemic and recession.

A loyalty program is particularly important when households are more cautious about spending because, in such times, customers tend to be more loyal to the brands they usually shop with. By communicating with customers and providing discounts, offers, and invitations to events, you can ensure that the customer's trust and commitment to the brand are maintained.”

Benefits for Staff as Well

At first glance, a loyalty program may seem designed for the relationship between a company and its customers, but Marlena Półrola points out that there are also significant benefits for employees, especially in physical clothing stores. 

If store employees are given specific KPIs to achieve in a week or a month, such as additional sales of a certain number of garments or a specified number of customers per week, the loyalty program can be used as a kind of game for employees, using the same technology and methodology as for customers. This means that those who work in physical stores can also benefit from a loyalty program in the same way as those who shop in them.”

The Goal Must Be Set First

No matter how big your brand is, Marlena Półrola believes that one fundamental task in loyalty management is knowing what you want to achieve.

You need to set a specific goal: Do you want to increase purchase frequency, achieve more transactions, or perhaps collect clearer data? Once you have that clarity, you also need to know your target audience, who they are, and what they want. Only then can you start considering what kind of benefit you should offer: points, discounts, or perhaps invitations to events.”

The Buying Circle Can Be Easily Closed

Unlike the travel or insurance industry, for example, the fashion industry sells physical, tangible products that can be felt and touched. According to Marlena Półrola, this is a great advantage when it comes to working with loyalty, as there is a wide range of options to choose from.

In fashion, the buying cycle is relatively short compared to other industries. This means that benefits and points can be offered for many different products. It also means that there is a magic moment: when the customer uses their points. First, the customer shops and earns points, but the party doesn't end there; the party continues when the customer redeems the points in question, closing the circle with another purchase.”

If you want to learn more about loyalty programs, click here.

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