Takeaways From the 2nd Annual Accessories Council Summit

The Accessories Council second-annual summit was held on Monday, Nov. 14, at the Hearst Tower in Manhattan and featured a range of speakers who dished on innovative ways to drum up more business.

Here are some of the more salient points extracted from the day’s roster of speakers.

Marshal Cohen, chief industry analyst, The NPD Group:
“Understand that people are trying to create memories rather than accumulate possessions. They would rather do things than get things, so retailers have to make buying products a spa-like rewarding experience. We have to put service back into the equation. It’s all about the experience now. Look at Apple, which is consistently ranked as offering top in-store experiences, because at Apple, they always have more staff than customers.”

Susan Reilly Salgado, managing partner, Hospitality Quotient:
“We always remember how people make us feel—you remember the emotion. Feelings drive sales, and when we capture people’s hearts, they come back. Word of mouth drives more business than ads. Some 86 percent of consumers would pay more if they were to be guaranteed a great experience, while 89 percent of consumers will leave after one negative customer experience. Look for ways to build emotional satisfaction—if one restaurant is booked, then look for a reservation at a sister restaurant. Do not use the word ‘no.’ ”

Anne Fulenwider, editor in chief, Marie Claire, on the subject of profitable sustainability:
“Millennials and Generation Z want the whole story on how the food got to plate.”

Nina Garcia, creative director, Marie Claire, on the subject of profitable sustainability:
“Not enough people are doing something for the fashion industry. A few are championing it—making leathers in a way that uses less water, chemicals, and energy. H&M knows that millennials care about this. The Gap teaches workers how to implement sustainable clothes. It’s such an opportune to make a change on the industrial side and on the individual side. No one is teaching consumers the real price of that $4 T-shirt. There is no transparency and no voice educating the consumer. We produce 150 billion articles of clothing a year and our wardrobes are disposable. We are not keeping anything; everything has become disposable.”

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