Posted by Barry Silverstein on November 26, 2013 02:52 PM
Most of the buzz around Target has been positive in recent years. The value-based retailer has always managed to rise above the ordinary, combining modest prices with a chic image engendering a fierce loyalty that cut across demographic lines. Chances are the bigwigs at Target smiled benevolently when consumers and the media referred to the brand as "Tar-jay" in an effort to highlight its designer-focused trendiness.
Well even a star can get tarnished—and right about now, Target is looking quite a bit less shiny than usual.
Take Target's stumble in Canada. When the chain made a big splash in the Canadian market earlier this year, the payoff for Canadian consumers who anticipated the chain's arrival was less than expected. Target seemingly did the right kinds of things, like partnering with Canadian brand Roots and Canadian entertainer Michael Buble, but the retailer's opening was beset by product shortages. What's more, while prices were competitive with other retailers operating in Canada, Target couldn't match the lower prices it set in the US—reinforcing the perception that Canadians would have to cross the border to save money in a Target store.
And if pricier duds weren't enough of a buzz-kill, a recent survey found that , "Some customers likened Canada's version to 'Target Lite,' with lackluster prices and an atmosphere that, despite renovations, still had the feel of the Zellers outlets that occupied the same spaces for years before."Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on November 26, 2013 11:35 AM
The blurring of boundaries between Thanksgiving Day and Black Friday may not matter much for long. Discount-hawking consumers, changing brand practices, the inexorable expansion of e-tailing and other factors are changing the whole notion of Black Friday, probably for good.
For sure the days of sacrosanctness for Black Friday and even for Cyber Monday are gone. There will be dwindling stampedes as the doors of Walmart or Macy's or some other chain finally open on the day after Thanksgiving. In part that's because many chains this year are making the jump to open on Thanksgiving night, devaluing the tradition of Black Friday probably forever.
Plus the discounts that retailers used to hold back until Black Friday now are being offered before that once-fateful day, as stubborn consumers, caught in a slow-growth economy since 2008, demand more and earlier promotional activity before they'll part with their hard-earned holiday purse.Continue reading...
Posted by Dale Buss on October 23, 2013 05:38 PM
As McDonald's picks through its options for goosing growth, its North American "Dollar Menu & More" gambit is getting a lot of attention. It's the most important new effort that CEO Don Thompson has discussed lately—but even he doesn't expect it to add much to the chain's top line. And franchisees are questioning its effects on the bottom line.
Such is the state of things at the world's largest fast feeder these days that the best it can expect to muster from a major new US promotional effort is to preserve its place in the downtrodden and increasingly competitive QSR segment. The national rollou to of the Dollar Menu & More will introduce items at $2 price points and even $5 price points when it rolls out across the McDonald's system next month, yet Thompson tamped down expectations about what it might do for sales growth.
"We continue to see and believe that [Dollar Menu & More] will continue to represent somewhere in [the] same percentile, 13 percent to 15 percent" of the chain's overall business, just as the current Dollar Menu does, Thompson conceded in this week's third quarter earnings call with financial analysts who follow the brand.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on July 26, 2013 11:49 AM
L’Oreal is teaming up with Walgreens and Duane Reade stores in New York City in an effort to test the connection between mobile coupons and real-time purchases.
L’Oreal coupons will be offered through mobile/social makeup app, Pretty in my Pocket (PRIMP), which leverages the existing relationship between ad startup Sparkfly and Walgreens' and Duane Reade's POS-providers. L’Oreal will be able to mine data from every consumer purchase via barcodes and connect it to their PRIMP profile.
Female owned and operated, PRIMP launched in late 2012, incentivizing in-store purchases with redeemable ‘Perks’ while enabling brands and retailers to track sales online and offline.Continue reading...
sip on this
Posted by Dale Buss on May 23, 2013 12:38 PM
It didn't work for JCPenney. But will a new strategy on pricing work for PepsiCo?
PepsiCo is adjusting its pricing strategy for its beverage brands in some sections of the United States in an effort to wean consumers off the habit of buying soda only when it's on sale, Reuters reports. Pepsi's "Hybrid Everyday Value" strategy involves narrowing the gap between soda prices on holidays and regular days by cutting discounts on holidays. With Memorial Day approaching, there's no better time for PepsiCo teo see if this new approach migh work.
Under the new plan, the price for a 12-pack of 12-ounce cans of Pepsi would settle somewhere between $2.50, which is how low it can get now with holiday discounting, and $5.99, which is about as high as the current "everyday" price gets.Continue reading...
Posted by Sheila Shayon on January 4, 2013 11:05 AM
Remember when Polaroid brought Lady Gaga to the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas as the brand's new creative director? This upcoming CES, Polaroid will unveil branded retail stores that will enable “liberating” photos from the “confines of their digital devices.”
The grandfather of photography is opening 10 Polaroid Fotobars, experiential retail stores that promise to help consumers manage the photography deluge triggered by digital devices, so images can be printed and edited and the whole process assisted in-store by expert “Phototenders.”
“It’s painful to hear an old photography company that is attempting to revitalize itself call photo printing stores 'cool and hip,' but the premise actually sounds both cool and hip,” notes Venturebeat.
The first Fotobar will open in a 2,000 SF store in Delray Beach, Florida in February, with subsequent openings including New York, Las Vegas and Boston. The Delray Beach location includes “The Studio,” a multi-purpose room hosting photo classes, private parties and a space for portrait photos.Continue reading...
brand vs. brand
Posted by Dale Buss on December 11, 2012 01:24 PM
Fiat faces more and more problems in the struggling European car market, so it's got to make more progress than company executives initially had hoped in the U.S. market — and faster than they'd planned.
So Fiat is turning up the voltage. In tandem with other Chrysler-owned brands, it is offering what it calls Conquest Bonus Cash as an incentive to U.S. buyers who own Volkswagens to switch. They'll give $1,000, through January 2, to any VW owner who buys one of their cars except for a handful of excepted models.
This isn't a usual tactic — the last time Chrysler did it was 2010, targeting Toyota. "We believe the Dodge Dart, for example, would appeal to current Volkswagen owners," Ralph Kisiel, a Chrysler spokesman, told brandchannel. Customers don't even have to give up their VW to qualify.Continue reading...
chew on this
Posted by Dale Buss on December 10, 2012 02:19 PM
Take that, Hamburglar and all your little mischief-making fiends: McDonald's may already be back in the U.S. just one month after poor sales brought about the departure of the head of its U.S. operations.
McDonald's surprised the restaurant world by announcing a 2.5-percent jump in comparable-store sales in the United States, after analysts had expected a U.S. drop in sales of as much as 1 percent for the month.
The chain attributed the unexpected rise to the "ongoing popularity" of its breakfast in the U.S. along with "balance across everyday value offerings, premium menu options including the limited-time Cheddar Bacon Onion sandwiches, and the beverage lineup," according to McDonald's press release. Holiday cheer, despite stepping up around Thanksgiving, didn't really move the needle on sales.Continue reading...