Q&A with Carolyn Boyd, president
Ted Vayos, BODY: Describe your store for our readers.
Carolyn Boyd: Posh Lingerie is located in a beautiful outdoor, upscale mall in the greater Portland area called Bridgeport Village. We chose this particular mall because of the unique stores in it that include some chain stores such as Banana Republic, Crate and Barrel, White House Black Market, Coldwater Creek, Anthropology and more and many local stores as well, that encourage people to shop local. Posh Lingerie brings to the mall the only lingerie store in the area. We specialize in carrying many European Bra Brands such as Aubade, Fantasie, Freya, Simone Perele, Chantelle, Panache and Marlies Dekkers and sleepwear brands like, Oscar de la Renta, PJ Salvage, Bordelle, Fleur of England, Mary Green and Ophelia King. We pride ourselves in getting women of all shapes and sizes into the right size of bra. We carry a size range of a 28A to a 44H. In sleepwear we have from an X-small to a 3X. Our customer service is second to none and we stand behind the quality of the products we sell. Our sales staff is well-trained and make the chore of shopping for bras and lingerie a pleasurable experience.
Ted: What makes your store special?
Carolyn: We pride ourselves at Posh at providing customer service that goes above and beyond what the customer will find anywhere else, a great size range in the products we sell and Quality that is second to none. Our attention to detail sets us apart in the market.
Ted: What do you look for in a brand?
Carolyn: I am constantly looking for new exciting brands and styles to carry that few stores in our area would have. I definitely look for good quality and great fitting products. I have always found that Fantasie, Freya, Simone Perele and Aubade consistently provide this for Posh. I especially love Aubade because of the fantastic fit and the beautiful fabric and laces they embellish with. My parents owned fabric stores so I grew up working with and appreciating beautiful fabrics and lace. I also sew so of course I can tell whether something is made well or not. For new basics we are trying Fitfully yours and Fine Lines. They both provide a great size range and a moderate price with good quality. I love Mary Green, Fleur of England, Bordelle and Linda Hartman for good quality silks and cutting edge and classic styling.
Ted: Describe the popular styles or trends in your store.
Carolyn: We, at Posh Lingerie, are seeing a trend of women moving more towards seamed bras versus the more common moulded styles that many American brands seem to carry. We are having a great response to getting women to make the shift over to a better fitting alternative.
Ted: Describe your price points and size ranges.
Carolyn: Our price range in bras is from $35 to $165 and panties from $10 to $100. Our sleepwear ranges in price from $30 to $550. The size range at Posh Lingerie is 28A to a 44H in bras and X-small to a 3X in panties and sleepwear.
Ted: What is your typical or average customer size?
Carolyn: I would say our average bra customer is a 32E or 34D-E but we also sell a lot of F cups and up. Our main sleepwear size is a medium.
Ted: What does your average customer spend per visit to your store?
Carolyn: Our average sale is $105.
Ted: Describe your customer.
Carolyn Our target market is generally women from age 30-60. We have started targeting men by offering a Gift-Valet™ lingerie service so that if they order from us by 2:00 we will deliver lingerie to them as a gift, wrapped and ready by 6:00. We hope this increases our male clientele.
Ted: What has impacted your business the most over the past year?
Tamara: I believe we have most been impacted by having more in-store events to bring in new customers. Being a small business we don’t have the huge advertising budget that some have so we have to be smart in the advertising we do have. We do some digital marketing and have a great repeat customer base that talk to their friends. By having informal wine events it enables customers to bring in their friends to be fitted and we gain a new customer one by one. We have seen a 30% increase this year by becoming more pro-active in hosting events in our store and in the community. We also have a huge email base that I have obtained by paying my employees one dollar for each email they are able to get into the computer from the customer. This gives them great incentive to increase our email base, which we use on a regular basis to send out event notices. Facebook has also been a great tool for us!