Channel Integration: Make it Seamless
These are basic customer service guidelines—forget about calling it customer relationship management (CRM). The cataloger Bachrach is very good at this. I buy from all of its channels, because it’s so easy to mix and match them.
• Aggregate transactional information. Aggregate as much of customers’ transactional information as possible in every channel they use to interact with you. This is a fundamental element of CRM and the one that’s implemented poorly in many industries. You’d hate to stop mailing some of your best customers just because they haven’t purchased from your catalog in a while, but they’ve been buying like mad in your store and on your Web site, and you didn’t know about it. It’s probably the catalog that consistently reminds them about you.
Make channel integration more than just a buzzword for your business. Think about it as good customer service.
Phil Minix is the managing director of catalogs for Reiman Publications. You can reach him via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.