Thursday, March 15, 2007

Every Day Matters For JCPenney

When an advertising campaign is launched, you get all the media metrics around consumer response rates and the rest, but you also get the reaction of the ad industry itself. The expectations were high when our new campaign for JCPenney broke because of the way we won the business. Not with a pitch, but with an idea. Lovemarks. The campaign we presented for the first time during the Academy Awards is called Every Day Matters and I think it is simply beautiful. Some commentators agreed with me. Some thought we had a “bad case of artiness.” The assumption was that the work might look good but that the people in the Midwest wouldn’t get it. My response? Underestimating people has been the squeaky wheel of marketing for too long. Are people in the Midwest only supposed to understand discounts and promotions? Are they untouched by stunning design, inspirational experiences and great service? We wove this campaign from Mystery, Sensuality and Intimacy because these are the qualities that inspire people everywhere. Commenting on the new work, Barbara Lippert said in Adweek, “No amount of Lovemarks can counteract a bad shopping experience.” She’s right of course. Lovemarks is not about advertising, it is founded on a belief. The belief that the consumer owns the brand and that it is her desires, interests and passions that matter most.

P.S. Watch the new ads and Bob Garfield's review on Calendar and Screen Moments.


Sara said...

I love asumptions since they cut both ways: People in the Midwest don't understand art, people on the coasts don't understand discount department stores (well, not admittedly). That said, the JC Penney commercial fuses two unlikely worlds, upscaling the downmarket through the magical mass medium of television. And though I don't have a TV, I caught the commercial on computer, which in and of itself is unlikely but clearly not avoidable. But aside from my making excuses of how I came to see it, I caught the commerical and got caught up. And me, huhh, no man, no kids, one roon apartment, a cat, a 24 hour job, and there I was--misty. So, if JC Penney ever opens a shop south of 14th Street and starts stocking doorknockers and stretch jeans, you might catch me there, shamelessly pawing through Zebra handtowels looking for a matching bathmat.

Geoff said...

G'Day Kevin,
Like the J C Penney ads, we have been amazed by the response via the myspace website, yesterday alone 3000 plus plays of "How Can It Be". The original song was written by Elliot Wheeler and sung by Melanie Horsnell (Forever Thursday- an Aussie Indie Band). An interesting by-product could be raising Forever Thursday and Melanie Horsnell's profile in the USA and transferring to sales on itunes.  Good luck with the campaign.
Sydney Australia

Michael said...

Just to continue the dialogue, re: reactions from ad industry for our new campaign - take a look at Bob Garfield's recent post on AdAge.
Of course, our most valuable feedback comes from "her" - our customer - stay tuned for what she has to say as we continue the journey.

Andre SC said...

Sara: I'm yet to meet someone in the arts that understands art :-)

garrick said...

This Midwesterner thought the spot was wonderful, and I suspected it was your doing when I first saw it.

Although the commercial remained in memory and I could describe it the next day to coworkers, it took three or four viewings to remember that it was a Penny's ad.

Disclaimer: I'm a graphic designer working in a hospital communications/marketing department. And a Lovemarks evangelist.

John B. Frank said...

I'm from the Midwest (Wisconsin) and I simply loved the JC Penney Ads. I particularly enjoyed the "famous movie moments" ad. I look forward to seeing what you do with Pay By Touch, whom I understand, recently embarked on a Lovemark endeavor with Saatchi and Saatchi.

allison said...

When watching the J C Penny calendar ad, I was in ‘flow’ that timeless feeling which flooded me with gratification for the experience. This ad takes me back to the warmth I felt as a child in my grandmothers home, waking to a scent of breakfast cooking on the coal range. I’ve not been to J C Penny’s, living in New Zealand, but I surely want to go now! That was a beautiful experience, thank you!