Sears launches new effort to boost image, low sales

HOFFMAN ESTATES, IL: Sears has launched a national campaign to reinvigorate its image amidst slumping sales.

HOFFMAN ESTATES, IL: Sears has launched a national campaign to reinvigorate its image amidst slumping sales.

The goal of the effort is to boost excitement in the brand, despite a gloomy economic forecast and increased competition from other retailers, according to Kirsten Whipple, Sears Holdings marketing and PR director. The campaign launched on March 1 and is set to run through May.

Sears, which saw Q4 profit drop 47% due to poor store performance, is reaching out to consumers to reaffirm its usefulness, said Whipple.

"We know a lot of people have decided that Sears isn't relevant to them," she added. "We know we have the products, services, and experiences that are relevant for today, so it's our job to get that message across."

Celebrity spokesman Eric Stromer, host of HGTV's Over Your Head, has participated in about 50 TV, radio, and print interviews regarding the initiative.

The retailer has launched a campaign Web site, Reimagineyourself.com, featuring design tips from Stromer, celebrity handyman Ty Pennington, of ABC's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, Redbook editor-in-chief Stacy Morrison, and "green" expert Deborah Barrow.

The corporation also plans to renovate the homes of 70 Armed Forces veterans on April 26, as part of National Rebuilding Day.

Sears is working with Euro RSCG Worldwide PR on the "Reimagine You" effort. The campaign budget is undisclosed.

The effort is aimed at all consumers, but Sears' partnership with Hearst to distribute a 32-page, promotional magazine to 7 million people through 13 magazines and newspapers is mostly targeting women, said Andrea Morgan, Euro EVP and MD of consumer branding.

The promotion is running in Cosmopolitan, O: The Oprah Magazine, Redbook, Marie Claire, Country Living, Good Housekeeping, and Popular Mechanics.

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