Sporting Goods Retailer Nails Customer Service & Marketing

TrySports is a regional retailer in the Carolinas that offers a range of products and services for runners, walkers, swimmers, cyclists, gym enthusiast and of course triathletes.

We were lucky enough to get a Wilmington, NC location, and in late 2009 I become a loyal customer.  Here’s why.

Customer Service: I went to TrySports to get running shoes fitted.  They have a comprehensive program where you spend about an hour with an associate to properly fit you for a shoe.

You start by running on a treadmill with a video camera that tapes you so the associate can review your running form.  Secondly, the associate conducts a short Q&A with you to inquire how often you run, if you have injuries, etc.  Third, they check the height of your arches and measure your foot.  Finally, the associate selects a number of shoes he/she feels will be the best fit based on the data collected.

While I know other retailers conduct this same process, I was very impressed with the thoroughness and loved my new running shoes.

Even though I could have easily went to another retailer now that I have found the perfect shoe, the next time I needed new running shoes I went to TrySports.

Loyalty Program: TrySports has an excellent loyalty program.  For every $1 you spend you receive 1 point.  When you reach 200 points, you receive a free $10 gift certificate in the mail.  Not only that, but you receive a $10 gift certificate when you join, on your birthday and when you refer friends.

There is a second loyalty program called TrySports Triple Rewards where you receive 3 points for every $1 you spend.  However, you have to pay $75 to “join”.  I refuse to pay for loyalty programs so I declined.

Email Marketing: Once a week, TrySports distributes an e-newsletter with a success story about a local athlete, product promotions, event schedules and tips from a local associate or athlete on a specific sport.  I can honestly say I enjoy reading the newsletters each week.

Another perk is you can click a link in the e-newsletter and receive 10 points toward your rewards program.

Events: TrySports hosts a number of training events from running clinics to group bike rides.  While I haven’t taken advantage of any of these events, I do check to see if any will fit into my schedule.

Community Relations: TrySports “sponsors” a number of local non-profit sporting events.  They help market the events in their e-newsletter, as well as assisting with setting up the racecourse if you conduct the race by their location.  While TrySports doesn’t offer a monetary donation (that I know of anyway), it is a great program for supporting all local non-profit sporting events so everyone gets to feel the love.

As you can see, I’m impressed with TrySports from both a consumer and a marketing standpoint.  And certainly I’m spreading the word.  In fact, a good friend of mine just went for a shoe fitting a few weeks ago.  I’m eagerly awaiting my $10 gift certificate in the mail!

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