retail

Walmart Jump Starts Holiday Sales Engine with Toy Teasers, Drive-Through

Posted by Dale Buss on June 20, 2014 01:07 PM

Walmart has a present challenge and a future challenge, and the giant chain is trying to step up to both with some new initiatives. So, on the first official weekend of summer, say hello to an even earlier holiday promotion season at Walmart, who is also toying with the idea of a drive-through to pick-up online orders from Walmart.com.  

The most pressing challenge, of course, is to get American consumers to come back to Walmart stores immediately and spend money there with the sort of growth that had been reliable for decades. Walmart’s growth has been stymied lately by a number of factors, including sluggish US consumer spending overall, and the chain’s own mistakes such as allowing too many items to be out of stock.

So this year, Walmart is attempting to get a better start on the holiday season by hosting what Advertising Age called the chain’s first showcase for long-lead magazine and gift-guide editors of the merchandise that it expects to be top sellers this holiday season—media features that typically don’t close until July.Continue reading...

brand news

Brand News: Apple iWatch, Bezos Defends Amazon Fire Phone and more

Posted by Shirley Brady on June 20, 2014 07:30 AM

TOP STORIES

At Cannes Lions, Unilever CMO Keith Weed bans word “consumer” in people-first focus; Beats CMO explains Apple acquisition; Facebook’s Sandberg promises no ads in messaging; Microsoft launches suite of ad targeting tools; and Google, Publicis and Conde Nast announce “La Maison” content partnership.

Sprint moves closer to $40 billion T-Mobile financing, as T-Mobile CEO apologizes for insulting rivals.

Apple's looming smartwatch will reportedly include 10 sensors to track health and fitness.

American Apparel CEO ouster could trigger loan defaults.

Amazon Fire Phone described as "chocolate ice cream" to WSJ by Jeff Bezos, who also defends move to New York Times.

MORE BRAND NEWS

Adobe turns iPad into drafting board with smart stylus.

Ben & Jerry’s is releasing Saturday Night Live-themed flavors.

BMW aims to make the MINI more masculine in China.

Cadbury customizes chocolates based on Facebook preferences.

Cheerios considers reviving 1980’s campaign to promote new dayparts.Continue reading...

brand news

Brand News: Cannes Day 3, Amazon Phone, GM Testifies and more

Posted by Shirley Brady on June 18, 2014 09:08 AM

TOP STORIES

Cannes Lions continues (above, Scott Ferris, Microsoft's GM of content advertising) with first round of Grand Prix winners announced.

Amazon phone reveal by "secretive" R&D lab today in Seattle sparks speculation, as BlackBerry joins Amazon's Appstore.

YouTube to launch paid music service.

GM's Barra is back on the hotseat today on Capitol Hill as automaker faces $10 billion recalls suit.

Beats headphones have been banned at the World Cup.

MORE BRAND NEWS

Activision expands Skylanders licensing.

Apple secures 31 new patents as stores get exclusive window on Beats products.

Dr. Oz grilled on weight loss claims.

eBay pulls Chinese "spyware phones."

Facebook's ephemeral Slingshot app annoys some users.Continue reading...

retail

For Retailers, E-Commerce Meets In-Store with Click-and-Collect

Posted by Mark J. Miller on June 11, 2014 07:01 PM

Marrying digital commerce with bricks and mortar has been a challenge for retailers since Amazon showed up and changed the game. But after years of trial and error and new innovations in online and mobile shopping, brands have finally found a way to make it work. 

Sainsbury’s, Britain’s second-largest grocery chain, is now following rivals Tesco and Asda into the world of click-and-collect, enabling customers to purchase online in the morning and pick up their items at locations in seven different subway stops on the way home from work. In addition to providing more convenient options for its one billion-pound online business, there are benefits for its partner, too. Transport for London, aka the London Tube, is hoping to bring in £3 billion ($5 billion) by renting out spaces across its 270 stations to the grocer.

And in the US, Target is hoping to catch up to competitors by making big investments in digital, including Store Pickup, its own click-and-collect service that allows shoppers to order goods online and then pick them up in-store the same day.Continue reading...

brand news

Brand News: Coca-Cola Life, Abercrombie & Fitch, Lululemon and more

Posted by Shirley Brady on June 11, 2014 08:30 AM

TOP 5 STORIES

Coca-Cola Life, in green can, marks first new Coca-Cola in UK since Coke Zero launched in 2006. 

Abercrombie & Fitch revises mission to be more inclusive.

Amazon reportedly plans local services marketplace as eBay local deliveries may be in trouble.

Uber faces protest by London's black cab drivers. 

Lululemon founder calls for shake-up of board.

MORE BRAND NEWS

Apple, Starbucks and Fiat face EU tax inquiry, putting Irish government on defensive.

Audi tests real-time Snapchat content with ABC Family.

Beckham launches soccer channel for Sky Sports.

Bic crowdsources handwriting styles to create a universal typeface.

BP will fly first commercial drone in the US.Continue reading...

retail

Target Takes Aim at On-the-Go Millennials with Mobile Commerce Push

Posted by Sheila Shayon on June 6, 2014 05:12 PM

Beleaguered big-box retailer Target, in efforts to rise from the ashes of a disastrous data breach that affected as many as 70 million customers, is redoubling efforts to reach out to Millennials with digital initiatives to capture dollars and mindshare on mobile.

"Target has traditionally been a store where people want to go in and feel and touch the products," Jim Porçarelli, chief strategy officer at Active International, told USA Today. "It's been a destination." But as more time-constrained consumers opt to make purchases from behind a screen, Target is tasked with reimagining its retail strategy into an omnichannel experience. 

While Target has been innovative in mobile, including its shopping companion app Cartwheel and its namsake app, both of which ranked in Internet Retailer's Top 25 mobile commerce apps list, it is behind competitors like Walmart when it comes to cross-platform experience. “It was very much a static experience," said Casey Carl, Target's president of omni-channel strategy and experiences. "It required too many clicks to get where you wanted to go."Continue reading...

brand news

Brand News: Abercrombie & Fitch, HP, Taco Bell and more

Posted by Shirley Brady on May 23, 2014 09:18 AM

TOP 5 STORIES

Brands to Watch

Abercrombie & Fitch is getting more modest.

Amazon hires more robots, escalates battle with Hachette.

Barclays fined $44 million over gold price fix.

HP to lay off up to 16,000 workers as results disappoint.

Taco Bell spin-off won’t get beer milkshakes after all.

MORE BRAND NEWS

Acura renews Jerry Seinfeld web series for four more seasons.

American Express sees a $25 trillion opportunity in mobile.

ANA acquires Brand Activation association.

Arby’s sells the sizzle in record-breaking 13-hour commercial bid.

Boeing is taking a page from Apple's design philosophy book.Continue reading...

brand news

Brand News: Burberry, GM, Target and more

Posted by Shirley Brady on May 21, 2014 09:02 AM

TOP 5 STORIES

Brands to Watch

Burberry posts record results as Christopher Bailey settles in as CEO with Japanese expansion, digital efficiency and e-commerce tests on Amazon and China's Tmall.

eBay reports cyberattack and asks users to change passwords.

GM, still reeling from PR crisis, recalls another 2.4 million cars and restructures legal team.

JPMorgan Chase invests $100M in Detroit, denies it's a PR campaign.

Target quarterly earnings: less dismal than anticipated, though profits slide.

MORE BRAND NEWS:

adidas reveals collection with Rita Ora.

Campbell's Soup lowers 2014 outlook.Continue reading...

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