Neiman Marcus’ holiday perks are very 2020: Santa delivers curbside and virtual gift advisors send champagne

Neiman Marcus now affords a virtual gift advisor service, and an in-store concierge service, to assist clients pick objects on their want lists.

Source: Neiman Marcus

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

This is simply one of many initiatives that the posh division retailer chain, recent out of chapter, is utilizing to attempt to win clients over.

It additionally has launched a virtual gift advisor service, the place clients full a quiz to be matched with an assistant who will textual content or name them with loads of gifting concepts based mostly on their budgets. One perk of the service is champagne and chocolate-chip cookies, despatched within 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 mentioned in a cellphone 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, monetary hardships and different stresses from the pandemic are main many to hunt down sentimental and distinctive items for household and associates. But there’s additionally a component this holiday season of not realizing what to purchase your family members. Those customers who’ve extra cash to spare have spent a lot of the 12 months shopping for new devices for his or her houses, kitchen home equipment and cozy loungewear — objects that are usually well-liked across the holidays. What is left on anybody’s want checklist?

Neiman is betting on one-of-a-kind luxurious experiences. The retailer debuted its well-liked Fantasy Gifts checklist for 2020 on Nov. 9, as a part of the rollout of the 94th version of its annual Christmas Book. According to van Raemdonck, simply 48 hours later, two of its fantasy items have been already offered out.

“The interest was immediate,” he mentioned. “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 chapter safety course of, rising from one of many highest-profile retail collapses in the course of the pandemic. Its restructuring plan eradicated greater than $four billion of debt. A brand new board contains former LVMH North America Chair Pauline Brown and former eBay Chief Strategy Officer Kris Miller. Van Raemdonck remained on as CEO of the corporate, which sought courtroom chapter safety on May 7.

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

Source: Neiman Marcus

Since then, Neiman has shuttered a number of shops, including its Hudson Yards retailer in New York City that opened in March 2019. It nonetheless operates 38 retailers, in addition to two Bergdorf Goodman shops.

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

The firm has earmarked greater than $160 million over the following three years to spend money on its shops, together with renovating its flagship in Dallas. Part of its technique is so as to add extra eating places and cafes to its shops, the CEO mentioned.

“We need to really create a personal experience when you go into our store,” the CEO mentioned, betting that buyers will quickly be snug purchasing and eating indoors.

But it is aware of it wants to take a position extra on-line, too. The pandemic has accelerated a shift to spending on-line, even within the luxurious class, which has not all the time been the case. A report from the consulting group Bain & Co. mentioned on-line searching for luxurious items has doubled to signify 23% of complete purchases in 2020, from 12% in 2019. Bain now expects e-commerce to be the most important channel for luxurious spending globally by 2025.

According to van Raemdonck, Neiman does about 35% of its gross sales on-line. It has roughly 5,000 gross sales associates devoted solely to digital. In half, this workers helps with its virtual concierge service, which is able to stay previous the vacations, he mentioned.

Like Macy’s, Neiman is providing a virtual Santa expertise this holiday season, kicking off Friday, that permits households to guide one-on-one video calls with Santa Claus himself.

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

Correction: This story has been up to date to mirror the right spelling of Neiman Marcus.

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Nieman Marcus’ holiday perks are very 2020: Santa delivers curbside and virtual gift advisors send champagne

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