January 10, 2014

A Walk Through The Mall

Let's take a walk through the mall for a moment.

That's a pretty clear message, don't you think?

Or this one:

Lotta savings there, don't you think?

January is clearance month, you're getting rid of stuff. You tell me that you "can't sell anything at full price in January". Or December. Or November. Or June. Or July. Or August.

I know, I know ... it never ends ...

Taxes and apps and discounts at Sears.

Good time to get a candle! Better than before Christmas.

Good question! Why shop anywhere else?

Why shop anywhere else when everybody else is offering you the opportunity to pay less?

Well, not everybody.

J. Crew applies a different story.

Go inside J. Crew, and you still see discounting and clearance and all the stuff leaders love:

It's just that the story is different. Different. Not red, but black on white, congruent with all other signage. And the store front is clean. The story is about the merchandise, but business must happen.

Think about that, for a few moments.

Here's a couple of stories for you:

I know, I'm biased. I worked for Nordstrom. They don't count ... they generate more than a billion dollars of pre-tax profit at between 10% and 15% EBT as a % of sales. Doesn't count. It's fashion, they can get away with over-charging the customer (even though you buy their stuff elsewhere in the mall, from competitors, at the same price). Show me somebody else.

What is the story Lego is telling the customer?

85% of the mall is communicating a story.

A minority of retailers communicate a different story.

What story are you communicating to the customer?

Do you think the story you're communicating resonates with the customer?

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