Holt Renfrew’s rich rewards for loyal customers

Icon Privileges offers experiences to reward its best customers and attract new ones

Rebecca Harris August 04, 2015

Holt-Icon-LogoToronto-based Luxury retailer Holt Renfrew is giving out big perks to keep its biggest spenders loyal.

The 179-year-old company launched is first-ever loyalty program, Icon Privileges, back in March. Members are given either Select or Front Row status based on their spend the previous year.

It’s not a points program. Rather, the focus is on giving customers experiential benefits, such as cocktail parties and luncheons with designers, access to one-of-a-kind products and complimentary in-store services.

“Experience is ultimately everything to us, so it’s not about racking up points,” said Alison Simpson, SVP of marketing and customer experience at Holt Renfrew.

“If you think about where loyalty is going, it’s less about the ‘do this, get that’ currency approach and more about creating experiences and unique benefits that will engage customers. That’s always been part of who Holt Renfrew is, so it makes sense that we would be leading loyalty that way and not taking a traditional approach, since our business is not that of a traditional retailer either,” said Simpson.

Icon Privileges has four tiers. Select members (those who spend up to $10,000) receive benefits such as free alterations and shoe shines, early access to selected products and offers, a birthday gift, and use of a concierge who can book tickets to a show or make a restaurant reservation.

Select+ ($10,000 to $25,000) comes with the benefits of Select, plus free monogramming, valet parking offers and treats at Holts Café.

Front Row ($25,000 to $50,000) has all the privileges of Select, plus additional perks such as an extended return policy and order delivery.

For Front Row+ members, ($50,000+) the benefits include getting to shop at Holt Renfrew outside of store hours, a dedicated concierge, unlimited valet services, and access to exclusive inventory and VIP events. Holt Renfrew flew one of its top customers from Vancouver to Toronto for a speaker series event with CNN journalist Fareed Zakaria, while another top spender got a trip to Paris for Fashion Week.

Just four months into the program, Icon Privileges already has 115,000 people enrolled.