Right On Target.
Consumers love Target for good reason; marketers should, too.
In Times Square, Target's billboards are attention grabbing and useful, alerting consumers to new locations and designed with an urban theme.
Several times in the last week I mentioned to friends, Vertical Marketing Network colleagues and one total stranger that I was working on a piece about Target, and each time I got the same response: a genuine smile. Apparently, Target is the kind of business that makes people happy. Is it the catchy ads? The endless aisles of high-brow-designer-gone-affordable stuff? The Bullseye Dog? Maybe it’s those Facebook gift cards we’ve been talking about? When it comes to Target, there’s something for everyone. And more importantly, there’s a lesson for every smart marketer.
Maybe I’m just blogging out loud here, but it seems like Target is a perfect example of how a brand can cover its bases. From in-store to on the street, from online to on your mobile, Target is right on, well, target. Smart marketers take note.
Trolling the store’s aisles the other day for Halloween supplies (I’m going to be a pirate), the connections between Target and recent Blogging Out Loud posts popped out left and right:
- Target is trendy. From the store’s ever-expanding fresh food department to the electronics department complete with iPad displays. It’s hard to remember a time when designers as successful and varied as John Derian, Sonia Kashuk and Zac Posen were available for the masses. For that matter, didn’t Target make Isaac Mizrahi a household name?
- Target doesn’t just get people smiling; it gets people talking. From standout billboards to clever commercials, the brand makes a bold statement about choice, design and lifestyle that resonates with savvy consumers. Whether they are young or old, affluent or budget-minded, Target has succeeded in shedding its big-box, discount-chain skin to appeal to many different types of people, who, in turn, have rechristened the store: Tar-shay!
- Target is everywhere. Not only does the brand have a great Web site, it also is active on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Furthermore, and really ahead of the curve, Target is participating in the emerging m-commerce with its own mobile app.
- Target channels and promotes popular culture. Last year, Target partnered with M&Ms on a promotion linked to the latest Transformers movie. And the store is currently asking shoppers to channel their inner critic — a la Yelp — by awarding one lucky shopper a $500 gift card. Another case in point: the aforementioned Facebook gift cards, which the retail giant started selling last month. Similar to iTunes gift cards, Facebook gift cards — available only at Target — can be spent on applications, social games and virtual goods associated with those games. Facebook estimates 200 million people play virtual games via the site each month. Now that’s making The Social Network work. From exclusive deals to special packs, Target’s promotions stand out. Still need more proof? Check this out.
- Target’s got kidfluence and dogfluence. Why was I surprised that among the Halloween costumes for kids big and small, there were also tricks and treats for pets? We know both are emerging markets.
As we head into the holiday season, smart brands should step up and into the spotlight — be it orange and black, red and green, lime, silver or gold. Convenience, cost, quality, merchandise; these are just part of consumer puzzle, and while many stores succeed on many different levels, Target shines by getting it all right.
Brought to you by Vertical Marketing Network, a Leading Integrated Marketing Agency.
Photo credit: JJ Nelson