Will ‘Practice’ make for perfectly loyal customers at Lululemon?
Lululemon is testing its first-ever membership program. While including elements similar to other loyalty programs, the yoga-themed apparel chain sees it as an empowerment initiative.
For $128 a year Canadian (about $96 USD), members receive:
- Either a pant or pair of shorts designed exclusively for the program;
- Access to monthly local yoga or fitness classes;
- Early access to Lululemon’s weekend Sweatlife Festivals and other events;
- Personal development programs;
- Free expedited shipping on e-commerce orders.
“Lululemon has always had a strong connection with our guests, thanks to the great work of our educators, community teams and ambassadors,” said Calvin McDonald, CEO, last week on the company’s third-quarter conference call. “However, it’s clear that we can take these relationships to the next level with the loyalty program.”
With its annual fee, the program, called “Lululemon Practice,” resembles Amazon Prime and its similar offering of free shipping and other perks. The inclusion of merchandise parrots subscription box services such as Fabletics in the activewear space, although those generally work on a monthly basis. Some department store rewards programs offer special access, although Lululemon’s program is not linked to purchases.
In messaging for the test taking place in Edmonton, however, the retailer said Lululemon Practice is all about “empowering you to live your best life.” Signage at stores include taglines such as “Your best life starts here” and “Last chance on a lasting experience” with limited space available. Marketing copy heralds a “year of workouts, personal development, and shopping hookups.”
Lululemon says it is getting a “very strong” initial response to the test and plans to add more markets in 2019. The chain already sees opportunities to increase the annual fee and add more features based on early engagement.
“Guests are seeing value in this curation of services and content beyond just our product and in buying into the program and driving value through the loyalty,” said Mr. McDonald.
- Lululemon Athletica Inc. Announces Third Quarter Fiscal 2018 Results – Lululemon
- Lululemon Athletica Inc (LULU) Q3 2018 Earnings Conference Call Transcript – Motley Fool
- Lululemon is testing an Amazon Prime-style membership as athleisure competition heats up – Business Insider
- Lululemon expands test loyalty program with $128 annual fee – CNBC
- #Lululemonpractice – Lululemon/Facebook
- #Lululemonpractice – Lululemon/Instagram
- Last chance on a lasting experience – Lululemon/Instagram
- Are you living your best life? – Lululemon/Instagram
DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Has Lululemon designed a winning loyalty membership program? What do you see as the program’s strengths and weaknesses?