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Strategy | 5 MIN READ
With summer barbecues and get-togethers in full swing, this month our Brands We Love series features Williams Sonoma, a Fortune 500 company1 that’s one of the top 25 e-commerce retailers in the U.S. and a powerhouse on the international stage as well. We will examine how Williams Sonoma is making an impact on the retail industry by creating a truly relatable lifestyle brand, providing a best-in-class shopping experience and partaking in social initiatives that appeal to the masses.
Williams Sonoma hosts in-store cooking classes, a unique offering that helps create a sense of community among its customer base. They offer something for the whole family with classes for junior and adult chefs alike. This is an invaluable move on William Sonoma’s part as they establish traditions and goodwill for their future customer base.
Williams Sonoma provides a seamless shopping experience for those looking for the perfect gift. On top of providing the standard gift options (searching by product category, season, holiday and price-point) they also provide an opportunity to shop based on the gift recipient’s personal interests. This full suite of options ensures the customer will be able to find the perfect gift regardless of what stage they are at in the buying process.
Wait!? Which brands are in the same family as Williams Sonoma? From Pottery Barn to West Elm these are the epitome of brands that truly understand their audience and put the customer first. Cross-promoting the family of brands gives the customer an opportunity to purchase something for all of life’s moments, big or small. Their Member Rewards program, The Key, allows customers to shop and earn rewards across brands.
Williams Sonoma (and its family of brands) are masters when it comes to storytelling within their marketing communications. The way they showcase their products through high-quality lifestyle imagery is bar none. Email marketing’s 8 second rule (the attention span of today’s consumer2) can take a backseat, since this approach provides the customer with highly engaging content they will want to see. Storytelling allows Williams Sonoma’s customers to envision themselves using the full suite of products in addition to leveraging the various recipes that are provided. By bringing this to life for the reader, it transposes them to another place and time.
On top of being a brand that is truly relatable Williams Sonoma partakes in several initiatives focused on community, health and the environment. As stated on their website: “For more than 60 years, Williams Sonoma has inspired and nourished peoples’ lives. Now, we’re building on this legacy for the future with Williams Sonoma Cares – our ongoing commitment to the wellbeing of our communities, our health and our planet.” From fighting child hunger with over 1.5 million meals provided through their No Kid Hungry initiative to a clear focus on sustainably sourced materials Williams Sonoma focuses on several causes. This ensures the customer can feel they are purchasing from a brand that isn’t solely focused on profit and one that is impacting the world in a positive way.