I am a fragrance specialist for a luxury brand at a high-end specialty store. I’ve been in the beauty industry for more than eight years and absolutely love helping people at the counter. The most important part of what I do is make things unique and vibrant for my customers. Part of the reason I love scent so much is that it transcends age, race and creed. I was born in Africa and have lived in Europe and speak four languages, which helps me connect with many of our customers who are visitors to my city. My relationships with my customers are very important. To establish a rapport, I often collect e-mail addresses and cell phone numbers and send clients messages about new products, special gifts or promotions. All women want to feel pampered and have a special, luxurious experience at the counter. The only problem may be her budget. Perhaps a customer will buy a purse spray rather than an eau de toilette or hold off on buying ancillaries in an effort to keep the luxury factor without breaking the bank. Either way, I never want to pressure customers, as I’d rather they get something small and feel satisfied and come back for more when their finances allow it. I also have been noticing much younger customers, which gives me hope that they will establish a relationship with the brand.
The customer today is much more optimistic than in the past two years, and more willing to shop like she used to. I’m constantly hopeful that I will find new strategies to make customers happy. Patience isn’t easy, but it is necessary for bigger, better sales. [EDITOR’S NOTE: This was written by a beauty adviser for a luxury brand at a specialty store in the Northeast.]