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Crafting the Customer Experience For People Not Like You: How to Delight and Engage the Customers Your Competitors Don't Understand by Kelly McDonald

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HALLS DEPARTMENT STORE—MIDSIZED BUSINESS

Halls is a high-end department store located in Kansas City, Missouri, that was created in 1916 by Hallmark founder Joyce C. Hall. The store’s vision was to be “first with the best in Kansas City,” and they’ve always focused on delivering a “unique shopping experience defined by unparalleled selection, attentive personal service and not-to-be-missed events.” Anyone who has ever shopped at Halls can attest that they do, indeed, deliver what they promise. Having such an established presence in the area, they have traditionally attracted a baby boomer and more senior clientele. Many members of younger generations have not thought of it as a place to shop for “their” style. Yet despite the store’s reputation as a place for older, affluent shoppers, the reality is that Halls carries modern brands and has a strong sense of contemporary style.

Halls turned to social media to change the perception that younger people had of them and to convert young, professional, and stylish women into loyal customers. Halls has a dedicated Twitter team that does more than post about the latest shoes on sale. They take the time to identify professional, influential young women based in the area and connect with them in a meaningful way—which they do by communicating with them in their preferred social media format.

Katie Hollar is the 30-something chief marketing officer for top Kansas City, Missouri, law firm Lathrop & Gage and an avid Twitter user. Halls identified ...

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