Thursday, September 6, 2012

Brooks Brothers...a model for excellence

It's the little things that make a difference
Admittedly, I'm a fiercely loyal consumer. When I find a brand or store that I like, they usually earn an out-sized share of my disposable income. Favorite restaurants, retailers, airlines, hotels, it goes on. It isn't easy to earn my loyalty...I'm a tough customer and have very high expectations and standards. I'm more than happy to pay a little more for things I value but of course I don't want to be ripped off. Let me feel special. Make me feel valued. Every so often make me feel like I got a special value or discount. But moreover, you'd better have high quality and great service. Never, ever take me for granted. If you can rise to these challenges, I've be forgiving when you fall down from time to time. I'll understand when you have to raise prices modestly. I'll even accept having to wait a bit longer for service if you have to cut back on staff to remain profitable during tough times. But never take me for granted. Ever. One of my favorite brands and retailers, hands down is Brooks Brothers. When I say that "pretty much all of my clothes are from Brooks Brothers" I'm not exaggerating. With the exception of custom made garments my tailor has made for me, everything else I own came from Brooks Brothers. Even some of my beloved trademark ascots came from Brooks Brothers. My closet is a mini Brooks Brothers store. Why? Because I like their style, and their quality is excellent. Their wrinkle-free dress shirts are the absolute best in the business. They make clothes that not only last, but are timeless and rarely go out of style. Their clothing has helped me maintain a professional image throughout my career, from an aspiring manager twenty years ago to senior executive positions today.

Brooks Brothers offers tremendous customer service, consistently from city to city, even through international locations. Do you know what I like even more? Their amazing customer loyalty program. I get rewarded for buying products I love. Their program has encouraged me to skip other retailers and consolidate my purchases to them over many years. It is such an exhilarating feeling when those little $20 gift cards that magically appear in the mail. I've worked in the retail and marketing side of business for over 25 years, so I understand how CRM loyalty programs work. I understand that they get shoppers to spend a little more just to earn what amounts to an 8% discount. But I don't care. I love Brooks Brothers. Even when I receive a nice hand written note from the local Brooks Brothers store, to inform me of a sale, it brightens my day. But you know what makes me grin even more? The simple birthday card they remember to send me every year, along with a $20 gift card. It reminds me of when I was a kid and those cards I'd get from grandma and aunts on my birthday, with a perfectly folded $20 bill inside. Nobody sends me $20 anymore in the mail, except Brooks Brothers, that is. Even their social media team are top drawer. They nurture their followers and post interesting content on Twitter. They ENGAGE with their followers. 

So yes I do love Brooks Brothers and I'm proud to say so. I'm proud that there are retail brands here in the USA who still get it. They know how to build and maintain relationships with their customers. Whether you are a small business owner, or an executive at a major company...consider my remarks above, particularly the first paragraph. In my opinion, Brooks Brothers is a model for excellence in business. I hope someone at Brooks Brothers reads this post someday and can smile broadly, knowing that their efforts have been worth it and have not gone unnoticed by the Palm Springs Savant.


Empress Bee (of the high sea) said...

i agree! and they make those wonderful no iron shirts for women too!

smiles, bee

Steven said...

I couldn't agree more Rick. You touched upon many of the aspects that make Brooks Brothers an excellent store and brand. I recently took one of my clients into the downtown San Francisco location on Post and was reminded of the quality and stylishness of the clothing. Ironically enough we were planning the outfit around an ascot that my company, Ceravelo, had custom made for him. We were able to find a beautifully crafted navy sport coat and a pair of periwinkle chinos. The detail was excellent and the fit was so good that it only required minimal tailoring.



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