Thursday, May 25, 2017
Customers have a direct way of managing their relationships with a company. If they don't like it, they stop coming. The business in turn must modify its behavior or fail. Here is an example of a vendor taking a wrong turn and suffering the result. J.Crew raised prices just at a time when customers were looking for bargains. Predictably, its sales plummeted and now the company is backtracking and trying to win them back. It might not be as easy as losing them in the first place. It is refreshing that the CEO takes the blame for the wrong move. One wonders how he misread his base in the first place. It indicates something fundamentally wrong in J.Crew's marketing intelligence. Did the company survey its customers? Conduct focus groups? Examine social media? If it had done one or more of these tests, it should have picked up its customers' mood. One suspects the company won't make the same mistake again.