020 7846 0004 nicki@relativityim.com

Is your data keeping you awake at night? Read how Relativity provided an-end-to-end solution for bedroom retailer Feather & Black

The Challenge

Family owned retailer, Feather & Black is famous for ‘creating bedrooms you love’. Yet their new Head of Marketing, Katy Ingram was having sleepless nights.

Busy overseeing all sales channels and developing a new team, Katy wanted to work more effectively. But she had no direct access to Feather & Black’s customer database.

Data issues were blocking their success, with a number of challenges to overcome:

  1. Outsourced monthly reporting meant no visibility of daily and weekly sales trends, impacting marketing decisions.
  2. Campaign lead times were too long, hindering fast responses to sales –whether good or bad.
  3. Little or no personalised marketing didn’t reflect the personal nature of buying beds and mattresses.
  4. Valuable insight in the customer database was unavailable, with no easy access to lifetime value and customer productivity.
  5. The current solution was expensive, slow and inflexible.

The new season launch was fast approaching. Feather & Black had 8 weeks to select and onboard a new partner, and get the first wave of over half a million brochures safely into consumers’ hands.

Relativity was selected because Managing Director, Nicki Mackin talked customer experience first and technology second. By starting with the end in mind, Nicki was quickly able to propose a simple but scalable solution.

“Our MD and FD didn’t want to be overwhelmed with ‘techno babble’.  Nicki talked in their language presenting a scalable solution that reduced our costs but doubled our efficiency.  They wanted to be reassured by an expert who knows their stuff. Job done.”

Katy Ingram, Head of Marketing

The solution

Relativity worked closely with Feather & Black, taking them through a 6-step process – from data mapping to campaign analysis.


Nicki and Technical Director, Mark Fiksen quickly cut through Feather & Black’s legacy back-end data systems by having good conversations with the right people. Nicki successfully led the data mapping process ensuring buy-in from IT and Finance.

She scoped out the data feeds going into the data portal whilst finding creative solutions for a challenging back-end system.


Mark made light work of processing over 250,000+ records.  12% of the file was quickly flagged as bad records – which would have incurred £70K in annual costs if they’d been mailed.

The audit included optimising the data through standard processing tools, as well as bespoke processes to meet Feather & Blacks’ specific requirements.


The cleansed data flowed into a newly created suite of reports. Katy and Nicki reviewed the outputs and learned about the Feather & Black customer. Marketing decisions could now be made based on data insight.


Based on the data insight, Feather & Black could afford to invest more in customer recruitment and retention.

  • Relativity worked closely with their team to set up a direct mail campaign. They segmented the existing database to target the best responders, and who not to mail.
  • Nicki proposed personalisation ideas, briefing the design team and the fulfilment house to deliver successfully.
  • Mark matched store addresses to customer and prospect data, enabling personalised messages from each store manager.

Our expertise in processing mailing data also maximised postage savings – delivering £30,000+ savings over a typical year.


With a significant increase in brochure mailings, Relativity proposed, set up and managed new processes for brochure returns and customer opt-outs.

On average 3% of brochures were returned, equating to an annualised saving of up to £20,000 if those names weren’t removed from the mailings.


It was now possible to monitor sales as soon as the mailing landed.  This meant that Katy could now provide timely sales updates and revise future strategy accordingly. 

The outcome

By working collaboratively with Katy and her team, Relativity managed to remove all the data blocks that had previously held them back. They now had;

  • Access to a strong customer database. They could now quickly evaluate and segment both retail and online customers with more targeted campaigns.
  • Full visibility of a clean, data compliant customer list that they could be confident in profiling and marketing to.
  • Data insight showing customer lifetime value. Analysis showed that customers shopping in store and online looked very different, but both could be more profitable by investing the right budget accordingly.
  • Visibility to make data-driven marketing decisions. For example, the high spend from direct mail customers more than justified doubling customer recruitment costs.

In addition, advanced visibility of the customer database enabled Relativity to also support Feather & Black’s digital agency with enhanced customer profiling. This improved their own targeting, which helped to deliver further sales of over £10m.

“Relativity’s knowledge in marketing and data management ensure that we identify and connect with our customers in the most timely, creative and engaging way.”

Katy Ingram, Head of Marketing 

Find out more

Call Nicki on 020 7846 0004 or email nicki@relativityim.com to see how Relativity can help your business with Data Insight, Customer Strategy and Campaigns.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This