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Rent-A-Center hires VP insights

BY HBSDEALER Staff

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Plano, Texas-based Rent-A-Center appointed Mike Case to VP marketing strategy and insights.

Reporting to Rita Bargerhuff, senior VP and chief customer officer, Case is charged with the global administration of customer insights/market research, marketing analytics, business innovation, customer relationship management (CRM) and loyalty.

Recently, Case served as VP marketing and senior loyalty officer for La Quinta Inn & Suites where he was responsible for the strategic development, execution and management of the hotel chain’s loyalty program. Additionally, he managed its direct marketing and customer-level analytics. Earlier in his career, Case held leadership positions in organizations, such as American Airlines, Brierley & Partners, Sage Telecom, First USA Bank and Virgin America. 

A Dallas-area resident, Case earned a master of business administration, with a concentration in financial management, from the University of Texas at Austin and a bachelor’s degree in finance/MIS from Texas State University. 

“Mike brings vast marketing, loyalty and CRM experience to an important role,” said Bargerhuff. “We’re delighted to have him on board.”

Rent-A-Center is the largest rent-to-own operator in North America. The company owns and operates approximately 3,170 stores in the United States, Canada, Mexico and Puerto Rico.

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More power to price: Research from the J.D. Power survey

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J.D. Power’s customer satisfaction survey released earlier this month showed Ace Hardware, Menards and Lowe’s ranked one, two and three on its proprietary customer satisfaction index rankings. 

But there was more insight beneath the surface. For instance, overall customer satisfaction with home improvement retailers is 768 (on a 1,000-point scale), up from 758 in 2013.

The research also showed:

• Price is an important reason (47%) for choosing a primary home improvement retailer, an increase from 38% in 2013, while staff and service remains the most influential factor differentiating the customer experience once they are at a home improvement retailer.

• More than one-half (53%) of customers look at the original price first, then sales and promotions, when considering which home improvement retailer to select as their primary store. Fewer customers indicate having received promotional flyers in 2014, compared with 2013 (43% versus 56%, respectively), with the average number of flyers decreasing to 12 from 17 year over year.

• Nearly one-fifth (17%) of customers purchase merchandise online from their primary home improvement retailer.

• The average amount customers spend per year on home improvement merchandise is $1,780 in 2014, compared with $1,626 in 2013 — an increase of $154.

• Among home improvement retailer customers, 28% say they “definitely will” repurchase from their home improvement retailer again, and 33% “definitely will” recommend their home improvement retailer.

The "2014 Home Improvement Retailer Satisfaction Study" is based on responses from more than 2,900 customers who purchased a home improvement product or service within the previous 12 months from a retail store that sells home improvement products. Customers evaluated their primary home improvement retailer. The study was fielded from January 2014 through March 2014.

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