Wal-Mart Changing Marketing
There's an interesting WSJ story today about Wal-Mart. Two things of importance there. First, they are coming out with an new advertising campaign that is softer and more emotional. The new campaign sounds pretty good. It should play well, especially with women, who hold the majority of retail buying power in America. The campaign's goal is to strike an emtional chord. That's almost always a very good thing in advertising. (By the way, love to hear what marketing-to-women guru Marti Barletta thinks of this new ad campaign.)
Notably, the giant retailer is also pondering its positioning. We all know that Wal-Mart offers the lowest prices. It's been drilled into our brains with consistency of message, repetition and huge advertising investments. "Always Low Prices. Always."
The WSJ news story reports that one of the possible new positioning statements is "Save Money, Live Better." I don't know about you, but I'm not crazy about that one. In fact, I do not feel that Wal-Mart should try to reposition itself. No matter what they do, they will always be associated with "Always Low Prices." That is simply the position they've have attained. It is indelible in the global consumer mindspace. Pork will always be "the other white meat." Likewise, Florida will always be "The Sunshine State."
I ask you, marketing geniuses around the world, what do you think? Should Wal-Mart attempt to reposition itself?
Here's the story excerpt (below)
Wal-Mart Raises Its Emotional Pitch
Wal-Mart Stores' back-to-school ad blitz aims to emphasize its product selection while striking an emotional chord with customers -- a sharp departure from its usual price-centric pitches.
New 30-second television spots are Wal-Mart's first major launch under Martin Agency, hired earlier this year. The new campaign comes as the world's largest retailer is anxious to keep a June sales lift going after disappointing spring sales.
Last year, the company promoted a more upscale image in a campaign that fizzled. This year's back-to-school push drops the once-ubiquitous smiley-face character and price "rollback" themes for a pitch in which actor-customers talk about how Wal-Mart fits their lifestyles. In one, actors recall childhood school-clothing choices while lauding Wal-Mart's low prices.