For all you marketers with a passion for the power of branding, we have the pleasure of witnessing the birth of a total brand makeover. Have you seen what The J.C. Penney Company is wearing these days? For me, it looks like J.C. Penney went to a party that Target was attending and was very impressed in what Target had on.
From strictly an image perspective, I like the new look and the messaging. I like it a lot. It’s got that confident personality. It’s modern. I enjoy recognizing it. And since J.C. Penney is not a head-to-head competitor of Target, I think taking inspiration from the discount retailer can work. But the “to-be determined” factor in knowing if this will become a great branding case study or a short-lived, very expensive advertising campaign is how far leadership has invested in this rebranding effort. Will engaged consumers be rewarded with a buying experience that meets the expectations of this new personality? J.C. Penney is spending a lot to improve the quality of its selling promise but how much will it spend on improving the product? The true magic of marketing is in the product.
If leadership can make the many needed changes internally to consistently backup this new brand image, I think the company is positioning itself for significant future success. And when its achieved, to be fair and square, JCP needs to send Target a nice “thank you” note.