Saturday, January 19, 2008
J. Crew Weddings: "High Touch"
I received this email today from J. Crew announcing their brand new "Crewcuts" collection for flower girls and ring bearers. Adorable! A number of years ago when J. Crew launched their revolutionary line of reasonably priced but oh-so-chic bridal gowns it made headlines everywhere. They dared to challenge what had been a very formal business model of selling wedding gowns that had been operating the same way for decades and turned it upside down. They offered the gowns only online, with no opportunity to try them on [gasp!], the styles were simple and chic with good quality, the prices were unheard of starting from just $225 and usually not exceeding $1,000 and most importantly, the customer service was impeccable. The results for J. Crew have been a smashing success story and eventually expanded into outfitting the entire wedding party.
I love their call-to-action above "BRIDE TO BE? email firstname.lastname@example.org - she's our wedding specialist, she'll wardrobe your entire wedding party and take care of everything [except walk you down the aisle)."
Now, J. Crew is a huge company - but they 'get' that weddings are the ultimate 'High Touch' event and treat brides with the respect that they deserve by going so far as to offer a name and a promise from the very start - no anonymous email address or receptionist or call center. I do not know Ashley, the bridal specialist at J. Crew, but I imagine she is quite popular and very good at what she does.
I must tell you that many in our industry across all categories could stand to learn a thing or two from this - are you sure that everyone in your organization embraces weddings and welcomes them from the very first point of contact? Are they so committed to providing extraordinary service that you would put their name and email address as the call to action in your advertising? J. Crew has taken market share from the traditional 'brick and mortar' bridal salons and continues to do so -- weddings are a people business and we all get one chance to make a first impression - it has to be welcoming, sincere and authentic at every opportunity!