The Limited: Stylish New Look, Collaborations Help Grow Customer Base

Great fashion, quality design, and good value – these are the three promises that The Limited makes to its customers, and as the Columbus, Ohio-based company approaches 50 years in the retail market, it has begun to examine how to even better serve its target demographic of young professional women. Thus, The Limited is undergoing a countrywide expansion and renovation plan, and luckily for local fashionistas, the Castleton Square Mall location was chosen for a complete remodel, the results of which were unveiled Friday, June 8 at the official Grand Reopening ribbon-cutting ceremony and celebrated with a special three-day sale.

I attended the Grand Reopening for my first assignment for Pattern. For me, walking into the revamped space was like walking into my dream closet. The expansive floor layout invites casual browsing, with neatly organized merchandise displayed on modern white tables and chrome clothing racks. The colors and patterns of the clothes pop nicely against the neutral walls; the visual effect is greatly aided by the bright, natural lighting. Chandeliers sparkle overhead in the spacious dressing rooms, and a cheery red accent wall welcomes customers to the wrap desk and checkout area. The overall effect transforms the retail space into a chic, boutique-y atmosphere.

“It’s the new, old Limited,” Senior Vice President of Marketing Tori Binau explained as we sat down to chat about the modern retail experience, social media, and style collaborations.

The Limited’s continued dedication to the fashionable career woman is personal for Binau, who purchased her first-ever suit at The Limited after graduating from Ohio State and now wears The Limited “100 percent of the time.” While her career path includes stints at Lazarus, McDonalds, Radio Shack, and Toys R Us, Binau returned to The Limited because of her faith in the brand and its commitment to its customers.

“We hire associates who understand that women’s shapes are different, who can help you find what you need,” she said. “And no matter your shape or size, we have a product that will make you feel confident and make you feel great.”

The debut of the Eloquii plus-size line, available at the Castleton Mall location, reflects the Limited’s desire to continue to provide their customers with a quality shopping experience and an exceptional product. “We found that what was currently offered in the plus-size market was lacking,” Binau said. “Full-figured working women want the same sensibility in their clothes.” After researching the plus-size market, The Limited recognized the importance of what Binau calls “design intent.”  Thus, she explained, “Jodi [Arnold, head designer for the Eloquii brand] takes the main line’s vision and translates it for the full-figured woman.”

The thought and care that went into the development of the Eloquii line is also evident in The Limited’s social media efforts. Binau, a self-described “research geek,” witnesses the inception of an idea, the translation of that idea to a sketch and then an actual product, so she spends much of her time collecting feedback. “Did we figure it out? Did we do it right? That’s the best part of this job.” Many of the answers come from The Limited’s social media channels. “I love the feedback and the honesty that comes from customers tweeting at us or posting to our Facebook page,” she says. “We pull the feedback from the social world and use it for planning for the next year.”

In part due to their active social media community, The Limited’s online presence has grown to be a huge part of their business, despite their relatively late entry into e-commerce in 2008.  “We find that the multichannel [customer] spends more than the one who shops only in-store or online,” Binau explains. “The challenge is getting customers both places.” The Limited hopes that the new store design will encourage online-only customers to visit and experience the in-store hospitality.

Between The Limited’s main line, the Eloquii brand, and the announcement of an upcoming multi-season collaboration with Sophie Theallet, The Limited is delivering the modern working woman exactly what she needs: stylish, well-made, and affordable clothes in an atmosphere that is all about her.

The Limited is now open in the former Fossil space across from Finish Line at Castleton Square Mall. Tweet us @PatternIndy or email us pics of your best summer street style to be entered into a drawing for a giftcard from The Limited!

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