Merchants on Madison Avenue have a new tool to keep its the well-to-do clientele returning to the luxury venue.
The Madison Avenue Now Client Loyalty Program provides rewards ranging from points to apply to future purchases, various free services, invites to events and gifts for customers shopping or getting their hair done on the avenue.
The program was announced Wednesday by the Madison Avenue Business Improvement District, which works to stimulate shopping and improve experiences along America’s longest luxury shopping venue.
To join the program, you download the free Madison Avenue Now app on the Apple App Store and Google Play. The app was developed for Madison Avenue by the retail marketing software company Coniq.
Retailers along Madison Avenue have been impacted by the pandemic and the ensuing flight of residents and office workers to the suburbs, reduced tourism, and even before by the high number of vacant storefronts pockmarking the streets. The loyalty program is just the latest in a battery of strategies orchestrated by the B.I.D. involving special events such as pet-friendly days, holiday celebrations, charity fundraisers and “watch week,” among other events to generate traffic and enthusiasm.
“Madison Avenue is truly an ecosystem, where each business complements the other to create an environment that nurtures and supports its clients,” said Matthew Bauer, president of the Madison Avenue B.I.D.
“Many of the world’s leading fashion and jewelry brands with flagships in our district joined together with our gourmet food shops, restaurants, galleries, salons, and personal service shops with the goal of presenting Madison Avenue as a cohesive destination where clients can fulfill their needs, and consistently and regularly enjoy the best available in the luxury marketplace. Madison Avenue has long had one of the most local and loyal customer bases, and this program will provide a tangible, easy and fun way of saying ‘thank you’ to the clients that make a visit to our district a regular part of their routine.”
Shoppers joining the program will immediately receive rewards from some participating shops, and their loyalty will be rewarded at point levels between zero and 200. Those points may be utilized for offerings at any business taking part in the program, regardless of where those points were earned. There have been similar loyalty programs linking different businesses, but this is the first time the format has been adopted by Madison Avenue.
Six years ago, American Express rolled out a loyalty program called Plenti, enabling shoppers to earn points through a variety of purchases, be it Macy’s or Rite Aid, which could be used for discounts at various retailers. It ended in 2018.
The Madison Avenue loyalty program is initially offering different experiences and shopping incentives such as private styling sessions and consultations, refreshments, gifts, “VIP” treatment at stores, and invitations to trunk shows and collection launches.
According to the B.I.D., 40 Madison Avenue businesses, including stores, galleries, salons and restaurants located between 57th and 86th streets, are participating in the loyalty program. Among them are Akris, Bar Italia, Buccellati, Carolina Herrera New York, De Beers Jewellers, Intermix, Lanvin, Ralph Lauren, Oscar de la Renta, Paul Morelli, Toka Salon and William Greenberg Jr. Desserts.