Macy's CMO shares loyalty insights at NRF Big Show

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Javits Center, New York City
Javits Center, New York City

Seven out of 10 Americans visit a Macy's store or its website at least once a year. That's 70% of all Americans — a loyal base of customers that was just crying out to be capitalized upon, said Macy's CMO Peter Sachse, in a session at the National Retail Federation's Big Show on Jan. 16. Sachse detailed for the first time some of the specifics of its collaboration with dunnhumbyUSA on MyMacy's, an initiative that he said has increased both sales and earnings.

“We saw we don't need more customers — we need the customers we have to spend more time with us,” Sachse said. “Therein lies the whole idea of loyalty.”

Through MyMacy's, Sachse said the company and dunnhumbyUSA deployed a customer-centric campaign that brought a more extreme level of customization to their customers. Macy's gathers information daily from the field regarding sales and specific customer preferences, Sachse said.

To do this, the 154-year-old company needed to capture customer data in a meaningful way and “create a new language” that would be used throughout the organization, from the sales associates up to the chief executives, Sachse said.

MyMacy's gathers and analyzes Macy's customer data through three rubrics: MyCustomerLoyalty, which measures the intersection of frequency and sales; MyCustomerBehavior, which monitors customer behavior, such as style preferences and personal motivations in-store and online; and MyCustomerEngagement, which measures the success of the previous two.

As part of its focus on “customer-centricity,” Sachse said Macy's also endeavors to personalize its customer experience with customized incentives at the point-of-sale and through hyper-personalized direct mail. Macy's now sends up to 500,000 unique versions of a single direct mail book in an effort to appeal to the individual. Macy's also undertook an enormous retraining program of 140,000 of its associates dubbed "Magic Selling," the largest such program in the company's history.

Future activations of MyMacy's will be through digital channels, including emails, the Macy's website and mobile, said Sachse, who noted that Macy's already has relationships with Google and Shopkick that the company will continue to optimize.

“But mobile is the frontier and we have to conquer mobile,” he said. “We are working very, very hard in mobile.”

Though the rollout of a campaign like MyMacy's can be complicated, greater personalization will be worth it in the long run, Sachse said.

“Put the customer at the center of all decisions,” he said.

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