CRM in Action: Rhodes Furniture Gets More Response for Its Money

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Challenge:Rhodes Furniture had been sending direct mail using a list that was in relatively good shape, but was not built in a relational file. "We couldn't tie purchases together with frequency and lifetime value," says Steve Hurwitz, marketing officer for Rhodes Furniture. Solution:The company implemented BeNOW, which provides Rhodes with a response model to identify those individuals most likely to respond to direct marketing initiatives. Using the system Rhodes can access such information as items purchased, date of sale, and whether a customer prefers to pay with cash or credit. "Virtually any sales question you have about a customer, a sale, or a group of customers, you now have in hours," Hurwitz says, noting that it used to take weeks. The company has segmented its customer list to determine which individuals will yield specific results based on certain criteria. Now, when customers are at point of purchase at the register, sales associates can instantly access such information as purchase history and lifetime value. If a shopper has been loyal for a significant number of years, for example, the manager will personally come over to thank the customer for his or her business. "It's sort of a rudimentary beginning to a loyalty program," Hurwitz says.
Benefits:As a result of its new direct marketing efforts, Rhodes has achieved a response rate 113 percent higher than any mailing of its kind for the company. Rhodes is mailing to 45 percent fewer but better-targeted customers, so its current initiative has generated 73 percent more gross dollars than a similar initiative launched the prior year. The company has also seen an estimated savings of $600,000 over one year due to its segmentation analysis.
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