NINA LEKHI

The world of fash­ion is no stranger to rad­i­cal con­cepts. One such is for a brand is to mar­ket it­self as ‘ve­gan’ and Bag­git has found suc­cess with this. Founder Nina Lekhi—rec­og­nized as one of the most pow­er­ful women in In­dian busi­ness— speaks about how th

The Smart Manager - - Front Page - NINA LEKHI IS FOUNDER, MAN­AG­ING DI­REC­TOR, AND CHIEF DE­SIGN CU­RA­TOR OF BAG­GIT.

on Bag­git’s cus­tom­erser­vice prac­tices. [ ]

Dur­ing my col­lege days, when T-shirts with sim­ple slo­gans were pop­u­lar, my friends and I thought about bags with sim­ple slo­gans as an al­ter­na­tive to T-shirts. That is when I thought of mak­ing bags. To make bags with at­ti­tudes,

I started ex­plor­ing eco-friendly ma­te­ri­als, which be­came an in­stant hit. Thus, it was a ma­jor fac­tor dif­fer­en­ti­at­ing Bag­git from other brands. That was my first found­ing les­son in mar­ket­ing— for a brand to be suc­cess­ful and be driven by pas­sion, the founder needs to be­lieve and own it com­pletely.

Our fash­ion ac­ces­sories are made purely from cru­elty-free and in­no­va­tive ma­te­ri­als, and are meant for the mod­ern In­dian wo­man. We de­sign a va­ri­ety of bags—that in­clude slings, purses, wal­lets, clutches, shoul­der bags, totes, and satchels—in vi­brant and trendy col­ors that are in­vig­o­rat­ing enough to bring al­lure, and sat­isfy our cus­tomers. Our prod­ucts are high on func­tion­al­ity and style, and we have some­thing to suit ev­ery oc­ca­sion.

Our fash­ion ac­ces­sories are made purely from cru­elty-free and in­no­va­tive ma­te­ri­als, and are meant for the mod­ern In­dian wo­man.

in­no­va­tion—a boon

In­no­va­tion plays a big part in the cre­ation of new col­lec­tions and con­sumers to­day are very much aware about the con­cept of cru­elty-free brands. Apart from be­ing fash­ion con­scious, they are also con­scious about us­ing en­vi­ron­men­tal friendly prod­ucts. Our ma­te­ri­als, made syn­thet­i­cally, last longer and are has­sle free to main­tain. This is the feed­back con­sumers have shared with us, and it has helped us cre­ate more in­no­va­tive de­signs. That is why we have been awarded by well­known or­ga­ni­za­tions like PETA un­der var­i­ous cat­e­gories, mak­ing us the fa­vorite brand among In­dian con­sumers. We, as a fash­ion brand, do our best to keep up with the lat­est trends. We make sure the styles are new and in­te­grate USPs, keep­ing in mind com­fort and con­ve­nience. Be­sides be­ing highly fash­ion­able, we also make sure our prod­ucts are high on func­tion­al­ity and the fab­rics used are re­cy­clable.

one brand, one fam­ily

Our cus­tomer ser­vice pol­icy is to treat our cus­tomers as part of the Bag­git fam­ily. We ex­tend our ser­vice to any de­fect in qual­ity which could be due to de­fec­tive raw ma­te­ri­als like metal or the PU/PVC used. Even though it does not fall un­der our scope of work, we re­place a de­fec­tive part—at a mar­ginal cost if it is lost or if it is a very old piece.

proac­tive cus­tomer ser­vice

Our cus­tomer ser­vice de­part­ment man­ages com­plaints from any of our 1000+ coun­ters. Qual­ity checks of all the prod­ucts are so strin­gent, that the num­ber of com­plaints we re­ceive

year-on-year is re­duc­ing. One of our strate­gic ini­tia­tives has been to cre­ate a sep­a­rate cus­tomer ser­vice team for bag­git.com. They are of­fered reg­u­lar train­ing so that they can re­solve is­sues vir­tu­ally, to the max­i­mum ex­tent pos­si­ble. Our fo­cus has always been on the cus­tomer ex­pe­ri­ence and for that we fol­low AAPACUT theory:

A – At­ten­tion; A – Ap­proach; P – Prob­ing; A – As­sist; C – Close; U - Upsell/Cross Sell; T – Thank you.

In ad­di­tion, on a daily ba­sis, we pay a lot of at­ten­tion to the am­bi­ence of our stores, prod­uct dis­plays, and groom­ing and eti­quette of our staff. We try and un­der­stand cus­tomer needs to build trust and rap­port with them. Our staff is well­trained to as­sist and ex­plain the prod­ucts’ fea­tures and ben­e­fits and also help them de­cide on a pur­chase.

ris­ing from fail­ure

Chal­lenges are faced by all of us in the dif­fer­ent spheres of life. My chal­lenges were more in­ter­nal in na­ture. My fail­ures, how­ever small, led me to challenge the en­vi­ron­ment and be ac­cepted se­ri­ously as an en­tre­pre­neur. I learned the tricks of the trade quickly and be­gan my jour­ney in 1985. I needed to prove that my de­signs mat­tered and catered to the la­tent need of the cus­tomers. My en­thu­si­asm cou­pled with de­ter­mi­na­tion drove me to cre­ate a suc­cess­ful ecosys­tem at Bag­git. The ‘ never quit’ attitude along with my en­ergy and ex­u­ber­ance saw me through those years. The hard work and sup­port from my teams made Bag­git a suc­cess­ful brand. I also learned that di­rect interaction with the cus­tomer of­fers in­nu­mer­able in­sights about busi­ness pro­cesses and prod­uct de­sign.

We at Bag­git en­deavor to do some­thing new ev­ery year. Women of to­day are always at the fore­front and have a unique sense of style—

Un­der­tak­ing a cross-chan­nel re­tail­ing busi­ness model to en­hance cus­tomer ex­pe­ri­ence is the first step.

quirky, cool with a sense of in­di­vid­u­al­ity. They love to per­son­al­ize bags for both party and work­place needs—to bring alive their true self. So we de­cided to keep per­son­al­iza­tion as a con­cept in mind and by do­ing some­thing dif­fer­ent. We pro­vided hand­bag trin­kets that are high on util­ity and add to beauty, and at­tempt to pro­vide a per­sonal touch to the hand­bags.

bag­git on­line

Bag­git has half a mil­lion fans on Face­book and a huge ac­tive base on other so­cial me­dia plat­forms such as Pin­ter­est, Twit­ter, and In­sta­gram. We use all our so­cial me­dia han­dles to do reg­u­lar new collection launches and run pro­grams that are highly in­ter­ac­tive with our fan base. Bag­git is avail­able across all on­line mar­ket­places, and is one of the lead­ers in its cat­e­gory, by pro­vid­ing an im­mense prod­uct port­fo­lio. Our on­line pres­ence has in­creased mul­ti­fold in the past few years and we are con­tin­u­ously work­ing to­wards creat­ing a seam­less ex­pe­ri­ence across plat­forms.

com­mand­ing brand loy­alty

For brands, it is all about pro­vid­ing fab­u­lous cus­tomer ex­pe­ri­ence to gain trust and loy­alty. Un­der­tak­ing a cross-chan­nel re­tail­ing busi­ness model to en­hance cus­tomer ex­pe­ri­ence is the first step, and cus­tomiz­ing it to the needs of In­dian cus­tomers is the next. Also, depend­ing on the re­quire­ment, it is im­por­tant for a brand to cre­ate a

di­ver­si­fied prod­uct port­fo­lio and de­liver it with a con­sis­tent brand ex­pe­ri­ence at ev­ery touch­point.

em­pow­er­ing em­ploy­ees

At Bag­git, it is im­por­tant for us to un­der­stand the cus­tomers’ fash­ion needs. Em­ploy­ees visit our stores on a reg­u­lar ba­sis to in­ter­act with cus­tomers and com­pre­hend their needs. Reg­u­lar meet-ups across de­part­ments helps them un­der­stand and an­a­lyze the re­quire­ments of the cus­tomers in depth. Our busi­ness heads travel reg­u­larly to dif­fer­ent cities to gain in­sights and ideas from peo­ple across dif­fer­ent de­mo­graphic groups. We also pro­vide reg­u­lar soft skills, prod­uct-based as well as sce­nario-based train­ing to our em­ploy­ees so that they learn to re­act to real-life sit­u­a­tions and solve cus­tomers’ prob­lems. The ic­ing on the cake is re­ward­ing em­ploy­ees on a reg­u­lar ba­sis, which keeps them mo­ti­vated and helps in re­duc­ing at­tri­tion.

plans for the fu­ture

We presently have 48 ex­clu­sive stores and re­tail through 1000+ lead­ing large for­mat stores, and multi-brand out­lets, and on­line re­tail­ers, spread across the coun­try. We have collection launches ev­ery month fol­low­ing the lat­est trends. We open one store ev­ery month in places such as high street, mar­ket cen­ters, and malls in tier I and tier II cities. We are also plan­ning in­crease our pres­ence in met­ros and foray into mini met­ros. ■

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