The President and CEO of Macy’s, Terry Lundgren, addressed attendees of the Executive Conference on the importance of developing growth through branding, innovation and a customer-centric focus.
“From 1872-1995 there were 149 Macy’s stores and 18 Bloomingdale’s stores, and all of the regional department stores in various cities under separate leaders, buyers and executives. Ten years later, Bloomingdale’s actually doubled their store numbers to 36, and Macy’s nearly quadrupled to 400 stores, and that was done mostly by co-branding. And in 2006, after a lot of consumer research, we decided to change the name of all of those stores to the name Macy’s. Today, there are 41 Bloomingdale stores and 810 Macy’s nationwide, becoming the largest fashion retailer in America. Macy’s brand is its best asset.”
Macy’s also localized their company by eliminating separate regional corporate offices and creating one, centralized corporate headquarters. Each regional area focused on a smaller region of stores and was able to be on the ground concentrating on individual stores and communicating with the customers that came in.
“There’s no technology that tells you what the customer came in for, that you did not have. Only human beings can do that,” explained Lundgren. “And that organization structure allowed us to be on the ground and actually do something with that information.”
In recent years Macy’s has also shifted to omnichannel retailing, a 360 degree view of the customer, who is no longer a one-dimensional shopper. It has created strategies to drive store customers to the Web and online customer to the stores, so no matter how or where customers shop they are shopping at Macy’s.
By researching, understanding and listening to the customer, Macy’s has become a leading retail company that has utilized innovative tools to develop growth.