Abstract The current economic environment, shifting consumer preferences, and technology advances have aggressively increased competition in the Retail Industry. Companies have been forced to reevaluate strategies, appearance, and overall brand to stay competitive. This paper aims to evaluate reasons companies choose to rebrand, the process of rebranding, and the impact it has on the company. The author presents JC Penney and its failed attempts in rebranding. The paper examines the rebranding decisions JC Penney made and the impact these decisions had on the company.
The author provides alternatives and recommendations, as well as implementing methods, risks, and challenges for JC Penny to consider in overcoming its current dilemma in brand identity. Introduction In today’s retail environment, companies are faced with tough competition. Forced to make changes, the companies are renovating past designs, marketing plans, and store environments to remain competitive. Rebranding is making it possible for companies to start fresh with modernizing the company’s trademark.
Although rebranding helps companies achieve a renovated image of the company, it also can damage a company if the proper steps aren’t taken. One company that has recognized the need to rebrand was JC Penney. The company chose to rebrand and has done so several times. Over the past one hundred years, JC Penney has made several changes to the company’s image and in recent years, the company began to make major changes to revamp the company’s image. Opening its doors with a new appearance, JC Penney hired a new CEO, Ron Johnson, who successful innovated companies like Apple and Target, to execute this new campaign.
Renovating the company inside and out, Ron Johnson made major changes at the company, specifically to the name, logo, marketing visuals, store environment, pricing structure, product mix, and promotions. Although, all of these changes were made in attempt to successfully rebrand the company, the campaigns didn’t receive the approval it was hoping for. Ron Johnson remained confident in the decisions that were made, but others were not. Business analysts criticized the decisions the company made with the new campaign, stating that the company’s new campaign was confusing and customers seemed to agree when 1st quarter sales reported a 19% drop.
Listening to its customers, JC Penney revised some of the decisions and presented a 3rd campaign with changes to pricing and promotions. Still analysts criticized the company and believe the changes weren’t enough for the company to survive. Second quarter reports showed no improvement as the company revealed its largest undertaking; the renovated store environment. The rebranding of JC Penney has been a rollercoaster ride of uncertainty. As the company is looking more optimistic, some changes the company has made are still negatively affecting the company.
The paper explains rebranding, analyzes the Retail Industry, and evaluates JC Penney. This provides support of the recommendations proposed for the company to overcome these failed rebranding attempts. Overview of Rebranding Successful companies have many things in common; one in particular is brand identification. When customers can recognize a brand without the company’s name on the product, it shows that the company successfully trademarked itself to the customer. Branding is significant to a company’s success.
For instance, Nike has branded itself by using an image of a swoosh mark and the slogan, “just do it. Customers now can identify immediately if a product is Nike by seeing these trademarks on the products or in commercials. Successful branding of a company is challenging and can take a long time for a brand to develop. Rebranding is when a company is seeking to provide a clear message to its customers and in response renovates its brand by creating a new look and feel for the company in order to differentiate from its competitors. Rebranding may involve renovating products or services or may involve much more such as renovating the entire business.
Deciding where to rebrand within a company depends on the reasons the company is looking to rebrand. Many companies have chosen to rebrand because the business and corresponding customer base has changed. When companies first open they may only sell a specific item, but after a company grows they may sell more items. This is one reason why a company may look to rebrand. Another reason companies may need to rebrand is if the company is expanding. Having multiple locations may require a company to update its name, logo, or packaging to correspond with the new locations.
If a company changed locations than rebranding advertising and marketing materials or a resonating logo to a specific town may need to be changed. The last reason a company may need to rebrand is if the company’s look is out of date. Whether it’s the logo, store environment, or products offered updating the look can attract more customers. Rebranding is not an easy task and may require a considerable amount of time and money to successful accomplish. Depending on what needs to change and why within the company, the rebranding process must be sure about brand positioning.
Identifying how the company evolved and where the company wants to be in the future will determine the steps needed to be taken in the rebranding process. Identifying specifics about the company is the first step in rebranding. A company will need to identify its strengths, weakness, opportunities, and threats. When a company performs a SWOT and understands what potential they have for growth, where value can be added to the company, and what competitors strengths and weaknesses are, then a company can make take its first step in the rebranding process by identifying the company’s strategy and making the commitment.
The next step is for the company to access its core customers. Understanding your customers and what unique products or services you will offer them will help set the company apart from competition. After researching the customers and identifying the demographics, the next step is crafting the core message. Communicating to customers what the company does and why they want that customer to support its business is the many objective of this core message. Eliminating the unnecessary is an important step in rebranding.
It requires a company to revaluate and remove anything that may take away from the brand. This uncluttering can refer to refining marketing materials or eliminating products, services, or designs within the store’s environment. Making decisions on what should stay, be removed, or be added will help develop a plan. Making a plan is the following step. As this step differs from company to company and what is being rebranded, the objective of this plan is for the company to identify what changes are being made to further follow the company’s strategy.
Whether the company is rebranding its pricing strategy and needs to identify new ways of pricing sale items or if the company is renovating the store’s environment, a detailed plan of what needs to change, by when, and at what cost should be identified in this plan. All of these steps have been the thinking part of the rebranding process. The next two steps are the last steps in the rebranding process and involve physical tasks to achieve. Implementing is a critical step and involves the execution of the plans. Taking a design for a new pricing strategy and careless implementing this strategy will make a good idea fail.
For instance, pricing products with a new scheme and not training employees to understand fully on how this new pricing scheme works will confuse staff and sales will be lost. Insuring the proper steps of implementing plans is significant. Lastly, measuring the impact these new plans will inform the company on how effective the rebranding has been. Knowing if there needs to be adjustments or more changes made in the company will allow the company to limit the risk of rebranding causing more harm then good to the company.
When building the plan for rebranding, a company needs to identify the risks and possible challenges it will face. Rebranding can be costly and time consuming, not following the steps in the rebranding process can cause many problems for a company, such sending the wrong message to the customer, choosing the wrong products or services, going over budget, and loosing customers to poor research, design, or execution. Without considering the challenges a company may face, then the company is risking its financial wellbeing and can go out of business.
Communicating to the customer can help limit the risk by explaining the company’s efforts in understanding what its customers want and how they are moving towards a better way of providing them with that. With no guarantee if rebranding will work for a company, deciding if the risk is worth taking is what company’s need to first decide on before beginning the process. The Problem The risks of rebranding and the challenges of today’s retail industry have made it difficult on companies to decide what it needs to do to survive.
The problem has caused companies to either stay the way the company is or to rebrand and make a financial commitment to something that may or may not be successful. When companies do decide to rebrand it is facing the risky of making wrong decisions that further hurt the company. JC Penney has faced this issue. The company had unsuccessfully rebranded twice and currently measuring the third rebranding attempt. JC Penney failed in the first two attempts because of poor decisions that were made.
Although these decisions were implemented correctly the lack of understanding what challenges they may face with parts of the campaign that the company may have is where JC Penney failed. JC Penney’s decisions have been identified and recommendations on how the company can fix these problems were determined. A rebranding analysis is provided and clarifies the problem JC Penney is facing. In order to understand the decisions the company made and why such recommendations were presented, a rebranding analysis of JC Penney provides the impact these decisions have made on the company and where the company is headed.
Evaluating JC Penney’s past and present in the retail industry is crucial in understanding where the company is headed in future. Industry Overview In the economy’s current condition, the retail industry is aggressively competitive. The United States is the number one leader in the retail industry and 54 of the largest companies are U. S. based. (According to Fortune Magazine’s 2010 “Global 2000” list,) With an estimated two-thirds of the U. S. GDP coming from retail consumption, store closings and openings have been a way of indicating the U. S. economy’s health. ) Although the unfortunate economy conditions, the U. S. Commerce Department reported that the total retail sales in 2011 was $4. 7 trillion, which is an 8 percent increase from 2010. This increase was the largest increase since 1999 and developed hope in peoples’ minds that the economy was coming back. As of 2012, there wasn’t much hope left after reports stated that major chain stores were closing locations nationwide. As companies seek to remain afloat, rebranding has been the trend that companies decide on to remain competitive. As more competitors enter the market, more companies are closing.
This cycle is referred to the Wheel of Retailing Concept. This concept states that new types of retailers usually begin as low margin, low price, low status operations, but later evolve into higher-priced, higher-service operations, eventually becoming like the conventional retailers they replaced. This cycle has forced companies to revisit its original mission and seek rebranding to save the company before it is replaced. Industry Trends Focusing on staying up-to-date, Companies look at industry trends and plan accordingly to remain competitive. The retail industry is seeing major technology changes.
The largest trend of 2011 was Internet shopping with mobile phone devices. The rapid technology developments continue to make changes in retail industry and forces companies to keep up with the latest improvements in technology to keep up with competitors. The cost of technology improvements is costly for companies, but not making these improvements can become even more costly for companies. Another trend is companies going green. Consumers are purchasing more frequently at businesses that are striving to be become more environmentally responsible through the company’s operations.
The high unemployment has strengthened the trend of frugality and conscious consuming making it more difficult for retailors to increase sales. Industry Outlook As the economy looked like it may turn around, the closing of major U. S. retail chains in 2012, such as Sears, Blockbuster, and, The Gap, indicated trouble for retail sales and instability in the U. S. economy. Even though brick and mortar stores are closing, online shopping has increased and will continue to increase as more companies make an online presence. The major reason for these closings was do to changing consumer preferences and shopping trends. As the U.
S. continues to face challenging economic conditions with the weak housing market, rising gas prices, and high unemployment rates, retailors are focusing on strategies like lean inventories, strong cash flow, lower payroll, improving customer experience, improving customer loyalty, implementing multichannel shopping, reintroducing coupons, and creating private labels, to overcome the economic troubles. With these trends in mind, companies are finding it difficult to evolve and implement these new strategies. The Gap has been one company in particular with this problem and has struggled with merchandise mix and pricing.
Even after rebranding, the company continues to lose customers to its competitors because of poor decisions made pertaining to brand identity. Rebranding in the Retail Industry Constantly improving and altering the brand will allow a company to maintain brand equity. In the past, companies have practiced rebranding to improve the brand and today rebranding is still the strategy companies are using to stay afloat. With fluctuating trends, companies are finding it difficult to evolve with these shifting preferences. The Gap has been one company in particular with this problem and has struggled with merchandise mix and pricing.
Even after rebranding, the company continues to lose customers to its competitors because of poor decisions made pertaining to brand identity. The Gap made poor decisions in redesigning its logo. When the company quietly released the new logo and publicly displaying the new logo on the company’s Facebook page, people became angry and criticized the design. The company received such a negative response to the logo that customers were threatening to never shop at the company again. The company quickly withdrawal the design and went back to the former logo.
The Gap clearly made poor decisions in research, design, and implementing. Figure 1. [pic] The Gap failed to understand what its customers like about The Gap and how these customers perceive the company. The company also failed to in designing a logo that contributes to the whole company’s image. Last, the company didn’t say why they redesigned the logo, which was a major implementing mistake. The company’s lack of communicating with its customers created gossip about rebranding the entire company, when in fact Gap was just making updates to its visual designs.
The confusion The Gap made for its customers created negative publicity for the company. Rebranding is difficult in any industry, but with such a competitive retail market doing it right is essential for rebranding to be successful. Providing a more detailed analysis of a company that faced similar problems as The Gap, JC Penney provides an example of how a company fails to rebrand itself, but is still has chance to successful rebrand and maintain its presence in the retail industry. History of JC Penney
Formerly known as Penney’s, JC Penney is an American chain of department stores with 1,100 stores nationwide. James Cash Penney founded the company in Kemmerer, Wyoming in 1902. Mr. Penney had one vision for his company and that was to be fair and square and establishing this vision on the “Golden Rule,” treat others the way you’d like to be treated. JC Penney today is focusing on transforming into the new retail era. Although Mr. Penney past away in 1971, JC Penney is continuing to operate on the founding principles he established.
Following these principles to this day, JC Penney is boldly transforming the retail experience across all 1,100 stores, as well at jcp. com. Focusing on making the revamping the brand to bring a better shopping experience for the customer. Competitor Analysis Evaluating JC Penney’s competitors determines the company’s strengths and weaknesses. Strategically rebranding itself, it is important for JC Penney to consider how it compares to its competitors. The two major competitors of the JC Penney Company are Macy’s and Kohl’s.
Macy’s is a department store that offers high fashion, excellent brand selection, and luxurious products. Macy’s has outperformed its competitors and has shown strong earnings. Another competitor is Kohl’s, which is seen as the most similar company to JC Penney when comparing types of products, prices, and promotions. lack of customer service found at Kohl’s stores. Macy’s differs from JC Penney by offering high-end merchandise, locating stores at elite sites, celebrity brands, and having several sponsoring events, such as Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
Kohl’s differs by low price points and celebrity brands. Although these companies offer things that JC Penney does not, both companies fail in comparison to JC Penney’s customer service. This helps identify JC Penney’s strengths and weaknesses. A SWOT analysis evaluates JC Penney and provides an outline for the recommendations that were made. Rebranding Analysis JC Penney has seen over the years its iconic brand begin to fade and customers turning to its competitors, who established a modern shopping experience.
JC Penney identified two reasons the company needed to overhaul the former brand. The first reason was the need to differentiate from competitors. Uniquely setting the company apart from competitors through strategic decisions on design, product mix, pricing, and promotions will help customers identify why they should shop at JC Penney. The other reason JC Penney needs to rebrand is because of its lost market share. As the company weakens, its competitors has grown stronger making JC Penney’s efforts to survivor in the retail industry much more challenging.
In recent years the company has rebranded three times. The three new campaigns were in 2010, 2011, and in 2012. The first campaign focused on redesign of the logo and advertisement materials. With poor initiation of the 2010 campaign, the designs failed with customers and the company began to form new plans that would revamp the company in more ways than in the 2010 rebranding effort. The second attempt to rebrand JC Penney was in 2011 when the company decided to eliminate the unnecessary by renovating the product mix and sales promotions.
Simplifying the experience for the customer. JC Penney had one vision for the company in mind and that was Everyday low prices no coupons, no sales, no waiting. The company wanted this idea to translate to customers as; JC Penney is a place that is fair, convenient, and stress-free. The plan was to allow customers the freedom of convenient shopping that doesn’t pressure the customer into finding out what is on sale or when a sale will be happening. Eliminating the frustration by establishing a new pricing method was one of the parts of JC Penney’s new campaign.
The 2011 campaign wanted to focus on offering more exclusive lines as part of the plan. This would help the company increase customer volume and loyalty. With new exclusive brands being sold at JC Penney, the company wanted to display its modernizing determinations through the redesign of the logo. Below figure 2, shows the logo redesigns from 2010 to 2012. Noticing that the 2010 design and 2011 design had failed, JC Penney recently made its third attempt in redesigning the logo, after the 2011 logo failed to display the modern image the company was hoping for.
Figure 2. [pic] This year, JC Penney has seen the most changes. JC Penney announced its third attempt to rebrand itself by introducing the pricing strategy the company has been redesigning. The pricing strategy was to eliminate sales and introduce a pricing tier structure. For the company to afford this, it had to cut thousands of jobs across all locations. The pricing structure was introduced in February of 2012 as, “Fair and Square Pricing. ” It wasn’t long until this transformation was quickly recognized as a failed concept and would have to be redesigned.
The company failed to understand what challenges this pricing structure may have on the company. Thinking that the new structure provided customers an experience that was fair, convenient, and stress-free, was completely mistaken. It caused so much confusion and frustration for the customer, that the company itself had difficulties in training staff to understand the new pricing structure. Susan Berfield explains this pricing structure in an article that displays an illustration on JC Penney’s new pricing structure.
The illustration is shown on the following page and identifies how the structure works creates confusion for the customer. Figure 3. [pic] As the company continues to implement its four-year transformation plan, Johnson has executed a renovated store environment that features two major interior renovations. One of these new concepts are boutique shops within the store that contains between 80 to 100 brands with each shop having unique interior design from other shops. Exclusive brands are featured in each shop throughout the store and draw customer’s attention with different lighting, furnishings, and displays.
The other feature that was developed for the new store environment was a customer service area called “Town Square,” which also offers complementary services and promotions. In July 2012, the Town Square gave out free hot dogs and ice cream. The modern look of the store environment received high acknowledgement from customers. JC Penney has successfully connected the company’s vision and core values to the customer through the new store design. In these new shops within the store, new product lines and exclusive brands are offered. The new strategy for products was to promote rivate brands that differentiate the company from its competitors. Customers responded positively to these changes as well as to the new marketing designs. The renovation of marketing designs such as the company’s catalog, website, email subscriptions, commercials, magazine ads, billboards, mall and store signage, and mobile website have all corresponded with the company’s core mission. The bold designs of these materials have given a modern look to the company that is fresh, clear, and simple. Below is an advertisement displaying the company’s Friday pricing markdowns with bold visuals.
Figure 4. [pic] Looking back at figure 2, which displays the redesigned logos, the 2012 logo has again resulted in negative opinions about the design. The company decided to promote the name JCP rather than JC Penney through out the new campaign for 2012, and is now seen in the 2012 logo. The logo has been negatively criticized because of the design decisions such as locating the new name in the corner of the logo, reducing the size of the name and having it in lower case letters, and the weird look of being off balance with a tiny square in the corner of a larger square.
The one common view of the logo that is positive is the patriotic look the logo promotes through the use of colors. A survey of 50 JC Penney customers reported that 88% of respondents were highly dissatisfied with the logo redesign. 5% dissatisfied with the logo and 8% are satisfied with the logo. Looking at the decisions that were made in these rebranding campaigns has identified what decisions were suitable for the company and which decisions resulted in failure. This analysis of the rebranding efforts the company has made provides support for the recommendations that were made for the company.
Company Health and Rebranding Impact The impact the rebranded pricing strategy had on the company was dramatic with the company losing $163 million during the introduction of this pricing structure, first quarter sales decreased by 19 percent, customer traffic in JC Penney’s stores dropped 10 percent, and the number customers who made a purchase dropped 5 percent. Sales in the second quarter were similar with store sales at 21. 7 percent decrease and total sales decreased by 22. 6 percent. Internet sales saw a major decrease from last year with a decrease of 32. 6 percent.
According to JC Penney, Inc. , these second quarter sales were affected by the company’s decision to reduce its marketing activities during the later half of the quarter. The decision to reduce marketing activities was made so that the company could focus on the pricing scheme and marketing in time for back to school. As of July 28, 2012 the company expects to end the fiscal year with in excess of $1 billion of cash on the balance sheet after spending $800 million in capital expenditures to support the Company’s transformation efforts and paying off $230 million of notes due in August 2012.
Alternatives The company is proud of its dedication to its founding principles, while transforming throughout the years. Although the company has kept many of the original principles it was founded upon, the original name of the company did change. The former name was Penney’s and some customer today still call the store by its original name. JC Penney can alternatively choose to implement a new marketing strategy and having the name change be one component of this strategy. As the company transformed so did the company name with variations in style and spelling.
With no consistency with the company’s name JC Penney wasn’t branding itself well. The company should seek to reestablish its original name with a modern approach. Implementing a modern logo with the new company name, “Penney’s” will still keep with the company’s vision of Fair and Square. An alternative for the company is to address the product mix it is currently offering. As part of the new marketing strategy, the Company can offer brands that celebrities endorsed, which will establish loyalty from customers who are fans of these celebrities. Pricing has been the biggest trouble spot for JC Penney.
The company also offers many more products to purchase online rather than in stores. Certain departments within the stores do not carry many products, where as online a customer can purchase from a large selection of products from the same department. Offering more of the online products in stores will strengthen the company’s strategy with broadening product availability. With the confusing pricing scheme, JC Penney should reinstate coupons and sales. This alternative provides JC Penney the chance to make adjustments to areas in which the company already rebranded. This lternative provides the company with a solution to the poor decisions it made in rebranding. The second alternative the company may consider is implementing a new media strategy. Increasing customer awareness through social media will help the company communicate more effectively to its target audience. Although the company’s website saw visual changes in graphics and colors, the site can still use more updates. The website will establish a total customer experience with new a format that allows customers to make appointments at JC Penney’s salon or to place an order online and pick up in stores.
The alternative will provide JC Penney with a stronger online presence with no overhaul expenses that the first alternative will require. The third alternative is to remain the way the company is at this time and focus on returning to the basic department store principles. As previously stated, the wheel of retail concept is a dangerous cycle of new companies replacing older companies because older companies evolve too much into something that they never once were. These companies add more products and services until new companies open and are focused on one thing only making the product better and replacing the companies that evolved.
This alternative provides JC Penney with a cost free way of strategizing for the future. Recommendations Based on the alternatives provided, it is recommended that JC Penney choses to implement a new marketing strategy. With the new marketing strategy JC Penney is recommended to return to its original name Penney’s, redesign the logo with the original name, offer more products in stores that are only available online, especially products from departments such as for the home, bed and bath, and toys. Although this may require more space, it will increase store traffic and sales.
Store expansions may be recommended in coming years. Another recommendation is to totally eliminate the pricing structure the company currently utilizes and reestablish coupons and sales. Coupons draw many shoppers into stores through the sensation of receiving discounts, if customers know they can always get low prices than there is no rush to return to that company. JC Penney needs to differentiate in a different way and it is not recommended that the company uses pricing to do this. Instead the company should focus on its strength, customer service.
Offering more services, just like the JCP Salon that was developed, will differentiate the company from its competitors. Since JC Penney’s competitors use products and pricing to differentiate, then JC Penney is recommended to use services to regain market share. Implementation JC Penney will need to take proper steps to implement the recommendations that were proposed. Steps in executing this marketing strategy will first begin with researching what products that are online available online and not in stores that should be made available in stores.
Focusing on products selling volume should be a factor in considering what products to display in stores. Deciding which products and what store locations will have these products will need to be determined. Pricing the products is the next step. Will the products be the same price in store as online? Asking questions about how the product might differ from merchandising it online or in stores will help determine how the company should price the product. Consumers will pay for products that are convenient that they can take home today, rather than price comparison shop online.
As the company is focused on product pricing it can eliminate the pricing scheme and reestablish coupons for these new in store products that will be available. This will lead to the next step, promotion. Promoting these products with coupons and sales that are advertised in mail flyers, email subscriptions, and catalogs will communicate to customers that the company has new products, sales, and coupons to draw consumers into its doors showing off the renovated store environment. Risks and Challenges Preceding implementation is determining the risks that will be involved.
When carrying out any plan this big, there will always be risks involved. JC Penney is going to face the challenge of spending more money to readdress the rebranding mistakes and will have to again communicate to consumers that the company is making changes again. The company will be risking its financial well being and customer loyalty by rebranding for a fourth time. Estimated costs and time will determine how risky this will be for JC Penney and determine how challenging it will be to implement these recommendations without damaging the brand further.
Conclusion As JC Penney continues to follow its four-year plan, making changes will be necessary for the company to survive. As the company successfully rebranded parts of the company, it failed to do so in many others. The recommendations proposed address these poor rebranding decisions and abide with the shifting consumer preferences in today’s aggressive Retail Industry. JC Penney will need to evaluate the risks and challenges that the company can afford to gamble on and decide if the company can pull off another rebranding campaign.
JC Penney has a chance to overcome its current dilemma in brand identity by implementing the proposed recommendations made. Annotated Bibliography Associated Press. (2012, August 10). CEO salvages JC Penney 2Q earnings disaster. NPR. Retrieved August 27, 2012, from http://www. npr. org/templates/story/story. php? storyId=158551610 The article examines JC Penney’s rising stock price after a poor second quarter earnings. Quoted in the article is CEO, Ron Johnson. Johnson states that the process of re-branding as a long –term undertaking and that short-term evaluations of the company’s performance isn’t representative. Associated Press. 2012, September 4).
Macy’s sues JC Penney over Martha Stewart deal. NPR. Retrieved September 4, 2012, from http://www. npr. org/templates/story/story. php? storyId=158952514 This article discusses the lawsuit filed by Macy’s Inc. against JC Penney Co. The claim, that JC Penney entered into an unlawful contract with Martha Stewart, is analyzed further in the article, providing statements from both companies on the matter. Barth, Devin. (Personal communication, telephone, August 6th, 2012). Art Director and Branding Specialist at HY Connect, Devin Barth reports his experience in developing commercials, websites, logos, etc. or many successful companies. In the Interview, Mr. Barth provided information on the branding process. The interview provides information on reasons why companies choose a certain strategy over another and what risks, challenges; the company is taking by choosing this strategy. Mr. Barth also identifies what areas of the branding JC Penney should focus on changing and what they did right. Berfield, S. (n. d. ). Remaking JC Penney without coupons – Businessweek. Stock Market & Financial Advice. Retrieved August 2, 2012, from http://www. businessweek. com/articles/2012-05-24/remaking-j-dot-c-dot-penney-without-coupons
This article details how JC Penney dramatically cut back on discounting. The author, Barfield, conveys how this new strategy affected customer traffic of JC Penney in the first quarter. Brennan, B. , & Schafer, L. (2010). Branded: how retailers engage consumers with social media and mobility. Hoboken, N. J. : Wiley. This book focuses on a retailer-specific approach to branding. The authors detail successes in branding with examples of companies that have rebranded, why they did, and how they did it. The book takes the reader through best practices to use when branding or rebranding a company.
Clifford, S. (n. d. ). Penney’s no. 2 executive is departing after 8 months as president of struggling retailer – NYTimes. com. The New York Times. Retrieved August 2, 2012, from http://www. nytimes. com/2012/06/19/business/penneys-no-2-executive-is-out. html? _r=1;ref=penneyjccompany This article detailed how JC Penney’s strategy confused consumers and the effect it has had on the company. Clifford reports JC Penney’s first quarter results from May 2012 and analyzes the company’s financial condition. Dikcis, Lauren. (Personal communication, telephone, August 4th, 2012).
Lauren Dikcis, a sales associate at JC Penney, provided information on how customers are reacting to the rebranding modifications. Ms. Dikcis discussed the changes she has seen over the year and how traffic in the store has picked up but hasn’t increased sales. She discussed how her job has changed since the new strategies have been implemented and what she believes JC Penney should do to increase sales and bring back the iconic brand. Folan, K. (n. d. ). JC Penney admits their no-sale strategy has “driven Away Customers”. Racked National. Racked National. Retrieved August 2, 2012, from http://m. acked. com/archives/2012/06/20/jcpenney-admits-their-nosale-strategy-has-driven-away-customers. php Folan details JC Penney’s President, Michael Francis, who stepped down after eight months on the job. The article presents CEO Ron Johnson as his successor and provides excerpts from Johnson on his new strategy for the company. Haig, M. (2011). Brand failures: the truth about the 100 biggest branding mistakes of all time (2nd ed. ). London: Kogan Page. Haig’s book organizes 100 failures into specific categories such as classic failures, idea failures, extension failures, etc.
Haig informs us on why we need to learn from these mistakes to become better at avoiding strategies that are wrong for your company. This book educates the reader about acquiring knowledge about past failures and how to avoid them to successfully brand your company. Hare, B. (2004). Celebration of fools: an inside look at the rise and fall of JC Penney. New York, NY: AMACOM, American Management Association. This book details the history of JC Penney to its rise as an iconic American brand. The author then describes how the company begins to decline, just as Sears and Reebok went into bankruptcy.
J. C. Penney “ JC Penney information. ” Encyclopedia. com. (n. d. ). Encyclopedia. com Retrieved August 7, 2012, from http://www. encyclopedia. com/doc/1G2-3404705042. html This compilation of facts, information, and a biography of James Cash Penney detail the history, development, vision, and mission of JC Penney throughout the years. This reference provides valid dates, locations, and people that relate to the success and downfall of JC Penney. JC Penney CEO Ron Johnson on Ellen controversy – CBS News Video. (n. d. ). Retrieved August 7, 2012, from http://www. cbsnews. com/video/watch/? d=7398105n This article details JC Penney efforts to hire Ellen DeGeneres to help rebuild its customer base. The article continues to describe how this strategy has led to problems with the conservative religious group called One Million Moms. JC Penney Consumer Satisfaction Survey. (Conducted in-person, 50 respondents, August 24th – August 25th, 2012). This independent survey was conducted with fifty JC Penney customers. Surveys were conducted outside two JC Penney stores. Twenty-two people were surveyed at a stand-alone store and twenty-eight people at an anchored mall store.
The objective is to determine the customer satisfaction with the new store environment and other rebranding changes the company has made. JC Penney Mystery Shopping Observation. (Conducted in-person, 4 Observers, August 13 2012). This observation was conducted at an anchored mall store and a stand-alone store with four observers evaluating the overall categories that contribute to overall customer experience satisfaction. This mystery shopping study provides the results and an analysis. JC Penney posts quarterly loss amid overhaul NYTimes. com. (n. d. ). The New York Times – Breaking News, World News ; Multimedia.
Retrieved August 2, 2012, from http://www. nytimes. com/2012/02/25/business/j-c-penney-posts-quarterly-loss-amid-overhaul. html? ref=penneyjccompany The article focuses on an in-depth financial analysis of JC Penney and the cost of restructuring, rebranding, and reconstructing the company. The author reviews the company’s share price and the stock’s decreasing trend. JC Penney revives “clearance” sales – CBS News. (n. d. ). Breaking News Headlines: Business, Entertainment ; World News – CBS News. Retrieved August 2, 2012, from http://www. cbsnews. com/8301-505145_162-57480701/j. -penney-revives-clearance-sales/? tag=mncol;lst;3 The article explains why the company is yet again changing its pricing strategy. The article states why JC Penney feels it needs to again change the pricing strategy because of customer confusion. The article explains how these additional revisions are hurting their credit rating, share price, customer loyalty, and helping its competitors, like Macy’s. JC Penney patriotic rebranding is not a hit with consumers. (n. d. ).
Market Research Surveys – Online Market Research from AYTM. Retrieved August 2, 2012, from http://aytm. om/blog/research-junction/jc-penney-patriotic-rebranding-is-not-a-hit-with-consumers/ This article examines CEO Ron Johnson and his retailing background. The article examines the redesign of the logo, restructuring of prices, and the renovation of stores. The author also details hoe customers feel about Ellen DeGeneres being brought on as the new JC Penney spokesperson and how these efforts might not be enough for the company to survive. JC Penney rebranding problems highlight consumers as emotional beings. (n. d. ). Market Research Surveys – Online Market Research from AYTM. Retrieved August 2, 2012, from http://aytm. om/blog/research-junction/jc-penney-rebranding-problems-highlight-consumers-as-emotional-beings/ This article examines the strategies prior to JC Penney implementing them. It discusses how this task will be not easy but will take consistency, persistence, and restraint. The article offers the insight of how rebranding be viewed as a battle, but an opportunity and that JC Penney will need to take full advantage of this opportunity. JC Penney is already going back to the discounting. TIME (n. d. ). TIME. com. Retrieved August 3, 2012, from http://business. time. com/2012/06/01/jcpenney-is-already-going-back-to-the-discounting-well/
This article informs the audience on JC Penney’s CEO Ron Johnson and his perspective on how the strategy is going. Johnson is cited in the article and informs us of how the leadership is struggling with these strategies and what steps are next. Keller, K. Lane. (2008). Best practice cases in branding: lessons from the world’s strongest brands. 3rd ed, Upper Saddle River, N. J. : Pearson/Prentice Hall. Keller’s book details strategies of some of the world’s most successful brands and examines the brand process, practice guidelines, and how to maintain this brand through brand management.
Lewis, R. , ; Dart, M. (2011). The new rules of retail: competing in the world’s toughest marketplace. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. This book provides an analysis of retail transformations and recommendations of strategies to succeed in the new environment. The Authors detail the retailing industry and what strategies to use in specific settings. Light, L. , & Kiddon, J. (2009). Six rules for brand revitalization: learn how companies like McDonald’s can re-energize their brands. Upper Saddle River, N. J. : Wharton School Pub.
Light and Kiddon communicate how brands turn around through strategies that rejuvenate principles and practices the companies follow. The book closely examines McDonald’s and how the company created a strategy that contributed to the success of its brand. Mattioli, D. , ; Zimmerman, A. (n. d. ). Target’s Chief Marketing Officer, Michael Francis, Leaves for J. C. Penney – WSJ. com. Business News & Financial News – The Wall Street Journal – Wsj. com. Retrieved August 3, 2012, from http://online. wsj. com/article/SB10001424052970204524604576608851276736670. tml This article details JC Penney’s hiring of discounter’s chief marketing officer, Michael Francis, to work alongside its incoming chief executive and one-time Target executive Ron Johnson. The article discusses JC Penney’s efforts to rebrand just as Target has done successfully and how the company, wants to bring in the same successful person to help them achieve this. Rebranding Essentials – Part 1: Why Rebrand. (n. d. ). Market Research Surveys – Online Market Research from AYTM. Retrieved August 3, 2012, from http://aytm. com/blog/research-junction/rebranding-essentials-why-rebrand/
This article outlines rebranding and the reasons why a company should rebrand. The author takes the reader through the process of rebranding in a proactive way and in a reactive way. Retail Performers in Q3 | Retail Trends | RIS News: Business/Technology Insights for Retail, Supermarket Executives. RIS News: Business/Technology Insights for Retail, Grocery Executives. Retrieved August 2, 2012, from http://risnews. edgl. com/retail-trends/TrendWatch–Top-and-Bottom-Retail-Performers-in-Q343951 This article analyzes and compares retailers’ net sales for the third quarter of 2010 to results to the same period in 2009.
The assessment of comparable-store sales and operational practices is detailed in this article. Sulick, Sara. (Personal communication, telephone, August 17th, 2012). A sales associate at JC Penney, Sara Sulick, provides a now-and-then analysis of the daily operations and customer experience at JC Penney. Ms. Sulick discusses the new responsibilities employees have since implementing the new rebranding campaigns into stores. This interview provided an employee perspective on the store changes, employee support, and customer satisfaction.