Saturday, January 23, 2021

Nieman Marcus has Santa delivering curbside

Follow Us on Social Media

Neiman Marcus now offers a virtual gift advisor service, and an in-store concierge service, to help customers pick out items on their wish lists.

Source: Neiman Marcus

Santa Claus will be busy delivering packages curbside, by appointment, at Neiman Marcus this holiday season.

This is just one of the new initiatives that the luxury department store chain, fresh out of bankruptcy, is using to try to win customers over. It also has launched a virtual gift advisor service, where customers complete a quiz to be matched with an assistant who will text or call them with plenty of gifting ideas based on their budgets. One perk of the service is champagne and chocolate-chip cookies, sent in the mail courtesy of Neiman.

“We’re in the business of curation. We’ve always seen that when we help people, they’re happier and buying more and coming back more often,” Neiman Marcus CEO Geoffroy van Raemdonck said in a phone interview. “And this year, I feel that people are living a new holiday experience … and so getting that extra support to find something magical is more important now than ever.”

“We really want to give that personal touch,” he added.

Enforced social distancing, financial hardships and other stresses from the pandemic are leading many to seek out sentimental and unique gifts for family and friends. But there is also an element this holiday season of not knowing what to buy your loved ones. Those consumers that have extra money to spare have spent much of the year buying new gadgets for their homes, kitchen appliances and cozy lounge wear — items that are typically popular around the holidays. What is left on anyone’s wish list?

Neiman is betting on one-of-a-kind luxury experiences. The retailer debuted its popular Fantasy Gifts list for 2020 on Nov. 9, as part of the rollout of the 94th edition of its annual Christmas Book. According to van Raemdonck, just 48 hours later, two of its fantasy gifts were already sold out.

“The interest was immediate,” he said. “This year, most of these gifts are experiences … like creating a library in your home. They’re not just something you wear.”

“In luxury, it’s about desires,” van Raemdonck added. “It’s about not knowing what you don’t need, or don’t know that you need, but when you see it, you have to have it. To me, that’s something we can do better than anyone else.”

In late September, Neiman completed its Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection process, emerging from one of the highest-profile retail collapses during the pandemic. Its restructuring plan eliminated more than $4 billion of debt. A new board includes former LVMH North America Chair Pauline Brown, and former eBay Chief Strategy Officer Kris Miller. Van Raemdonck remained on as CEO of the company, which sought court bankruptcy protection on May 7.

Santa Claus will deliver packages curbside, by request, at Neiman Marcus this holiday season.

Source: Neiman Marcus

Since then, Nieman has shuttered several stores, including its Hudson Yards store in New York City that opened in March 2019. It still operates 38 shops, as well as two Bergdorf Goodman department stores.

“We’re really happy with the number of stores we have, and where they’re located,” van Raemdonck said. “We’re constantly going to look at this. As for now, we’re happy with it.”

The company has earmarked more than $160 million over the next three years to invest in its stores, including renovating its flagship in Dallas. Part of its strategy is to add more restaurants and cafes to its stores, the CEO said.

“We need to really create a personal experience when you go into our store,” the CEO said, betting that consumers will soon be comfortable shopping and dining indoors.

But it knows it needs to invest more online, too. The pandemic has accelerated a shift to spending online, even in the luxury category, which has not always been the case. A report from the consulting group Bain & Co. said online shopping for luxury goods has doubled to represent 23% of total purchases in 2020, from 12% in 2019. Bain now expects e-commerce to be the biggest channel for luxury spending globally by 2025.

According to van Raemdonck, Neiman does about 35% of its sales online. It has roughly 5,000 sales associates devoted solely to digital. In part, this staff helps with its virtual concierge service, which will remain past the holidays, he said.

Like Macy’s, Neiman is also offering a virtual Santa experience this holiday season, kicking off Friday, that allows families to book one-on-one video calls with Santa Claus himself.

“During the pandemic, we’ve hired many more Santas than any other year,” van Raemdonck said. “And I think that speaks to the magic. People need magic.”

Source link

Latest news

FIFA 21 TOTY Ultimate XI lineup confirmed and first FUT TOTY ratings unveiled

The FUT 21 Team of the Year (TOTY) Ultimate XI has finally been confirmed, kicking off the biggest promo of the FUT calendar....
All countries
Total Active Covid19 Cases
Updated on January 23, 2021 3:17 am

TMC expels MLA Dalmiya in ‘strong message’ to rebels | India News

TMC on Friday expelled MLA Baishali Dalmiya, its Bally MLA and daughter of former ICC chief Jagmohan Dalmiya, to send out what senior...

Related news

Pfizer to supply up to 40 million Covid vaccine doses to Covax global program

A nurse prepares the Pfizer-BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine, at a vaccination center, in Sarcelles near Paris on January 10, 2021.ALAIN JOCARD | AFP | Getty...

‘No Time to Die,’ ‘Ghostbusters: Afterlife,’ ‘Uncharted’ delayed

Daniel Craig stars as James Bond in "No Time To Die."Source: MGMAs the coronavirus pandemic continues to rage in the United States, Hollywood is...

U.S. to remain a WHO member and join Covid vaccine plan

Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.Patrick Semansky | Bloomberg | Getty ImagesThe U.S. will remain a member...

Morgan Stanley (MS) Q4 2020 earnings beat estimates

Morgan Stanley on Wednesday posted fourth-quarter profit and revenue that exceeded analysts' expectations on strong trading, investment banking and wealth management results.The firm reported...