With New CEO Aboard, Lands’ End Seeks To Reinvent Itself With Fall Campaign
For its fall effort, the 50-year-old retailer unveils a two-pronged approach aimed at expanding its portfolio while holding onto loyalists.
It’s no surprise that significant changes are afoot at Lands’ End. The venerable catalog and online retailer, whose brand has been synonymous with a functional, if boring, approach, this year appointed a new CEO from Dolce & Gabbana USA. Meanwhile, it’s re-emerging as a standalone company after being spun off from Sears Holdings in the spring of last year.
Now, as the company approaches its critical fiscal fourth quarter, which will begin in October, it’s launched a two-pronged fall campaign that features significant digital components. The challenge: to bring aboard younger, hipper customers without alienating more family-oriented loyalists.
It’s the first significant opportunity for newly appointed CEO Federica Marchionni, along with CMO Steven Rado, to remake the brand’s image among consumers. Besides the likely influence of Marchionni’s D&G experience on the effort, Rado brings learnings gained as VP of marketing at Victoria’s Secret Direct.
“Our goal was to create a meaningful fall campaign that captures the spirit of the Lands’ End brand aimed at the company’s loyal customers, as well as inviting new, prospective customers to extend the Lands’ End family,” said Marchionni. “In today’s fast-paced world, we are all reliant on our digital devices and I wanted our Quality.Time and A Closer Look at the Land campaigns to inspire our customers in an engaging way.”
The Quality.Time prong of the campaign is presented with a look and feel that will be familiar to loyal longtime customers, while A Closer Look At The Land aims to appeal to new, more style-conscious customers, while keeping true to the company’s core value of an appreciation of the beauty of nature. Both of these themes are reflected in the retailer’s front page:
The retailer has also re-vamped its checkout process and its navigation, incorporating additional drop-down options, the company said. Both campaigns will also be prominently featured on the brand’s mobile site, which the company says uses a mobile-first responsive design.
Because site users still have the option to revert to “Classic Lands’ End,” it’s easy to compare the new approach to the more traditional style it has used in the past.
Additionally, it has launched ecatalogs for the first time, following the lead of brands like IKEA, featuring large high-quality photos and a pop-up style interface for customers to put products into their shopping carts.
These on-site efforts will be complemented with offline and digital advertising on news and lifestyle properties such as Bloomberg.com, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, as well as on Condé Nast, Hearst and Time Inc. properties. All ads will be running across desktop, tablet and mobile.
“Customers are seeking content across all devices and we want to reach them on all platforms with these meaningful and inspirational campaign messages,” a spokesperson said.
The Quality.Time campaign will be featured on wsj.com and will sponsor the WSJ Magazine’s women’s fashion section on the WSJ iPad app. The same messaging, geared toward older brand loyalists, will appear on Fortune.com and RealSimple.com
In addition to the more traditional display advertising, Lands’ End will be taking to social media with paid campaigns. Its younger, hipper campaign, A Closer Look at the Land, will be featured in an Instagram ad campaign in the month of September and in Promoted Pins on Pinterest. Facebook and Twitter ads will be targeted to both audiences. Search marketing is supporting the overall Fall campaign, according to the company.
Lands’ End will also leverage its own social media audiences to drive traffic to the new experiences:
— LandsEnd (@LandsEnd) August 28, 2015
Rather than working with an agency, Lands’ End designed, shot and executed all of its campaign collateral in-house, following the vision of new CEO Marchionni.
Lands’ End was one of the earlier catalog retailers to go online, and it has continued to make investments in digital marketing. The company switched email providers and re-architected its email database last year to enable more specific segmentation and more targeted messaging. It also launched a new on-site tool to help customers decide what size product to order.
This year, it says it’s going fully responsive with its email design templates and is exploring options for an integrated global platform to enable more personalized email, online, mobile and social interactions.
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