September, 2011 – This Luxury Daily article features AARC research on the effectiveness of email sales campaigns with an affluent audience (http://www.luxurydaily.com/gieves-and-hawkes-drives-in-store-ecommerce-sales-for-anniversary-celebration/).
By Rachel Lamb
Savile Row tailor Gieves & Hawkes is celebrating 100 years of its Naval Warrants with an in-store and online sale that it is promoting to its email database.
Running Sept. 17-Oct. 16, the promotion is offering a discount on ready-to-wear and made-to-measure ranges both online and in-store. Gieves & Hawkes sent out email blasts and has a section on its Web site dedicated to the sale.
“If the emails are going to past clients, this can be a very effective promotion,” said Ron Kurtz, principal of American Affluence Research Center, Atlanta.
“Email announcements work with people who are past clients and people who have otherwise opted in,” he said. “[However], if the emails are being used to make initial contact with an affluent audience, the results are apt to be very limited.”
Gieves & Hawkes did not respond by press deadline.
Mr. Kurtz is not affiliated with the brand but agreed to comment as an industry expert.
Gieves & Hawkes is a 240-year-old tailor in London specializing in bespoke and made-to-measure men’s suits and tuxedos.
The company is based at No. 1 Savile Row with two other London stores in Sloane Square and Lime Street as well as boutiques in department stores Harvey Nichols and Selfridges.
There are multiple locations across Britain including Bath, Birmingham, Chester, Liverpool, Winchester and Dublin.
The company is continuing its expansion into China, Hong Kong and Taiwan with 100 stores and concessions.
Opt-in consumers were alerted via email to the new discounts.
Individuals are discounted $157 off suits and all outwear and $117 off all jackets excluding blazers.
Furthermore, consumers can buy any three shirts for $471.
Gieves & Hawkes is offering made-to-measure suits for $1,178 or $1,250 if two or more suits are bought.
The offer is only available on select fabrics and consumers must go in-store to learn specifics of this offer.
“I believe this promotion will attract consumers to the store,” Mr. Kurtz said. “It gives a special reason for providing extra value, which even the affluent appreciate.
“It is also being conducted at the start of the new Fall season, when men will be thinking about adding to their wardrobe,” he said.
“And, the recipients of the offer are familiar with the quality Gieves & Hawkes offers.”
Although email is a more modern vehicle to attract an interested consumer group, some experts think that traditional marketing could be a better ploy.
“For a high-end product such as this, a personal letter in the form of an invitation to enjoy this special offer would be the most effective both for sales and luxury branding,” said Karen Weiner Escalera, president of KWE Group, Miami. “The letter would be on a very high-quality stationery and personally signed.
Luxury consumers, especially those who will be spending considerable amounts of money on customized suits and tuxedos, like to feel important to the brands they covet and buy from.
Therefore, it is important for brands to highlight their heritage and the quality of their products, the reasons why luxury products cost so much.
“What needs to be projected most prominently are the qualities that make for luxury that they feature in the section Discover Grieves & Hawkes Tailoring, namely the history, quality and craftsmanship,” she said. “Then, the special offer is perceived as real value.”