Sears Launches New Branding Campaign

Sears Sears says it is rolling out a new marketing campaign, themed "Sears. Life. Well Spent," which it hopes will sell shoppers on the money-saving possibilities of both its proprietary and national brands.

Ads pushing the new "Life. Well spent" tagline are now running on national TV and radio, as well as online, with many focused on the company's spring fashions. The campaign is "tapping into the belief that fashion doesn't have to come at the expense of living well," the company says in its release. Young & Rubicam, Chicago created the campaign, and ads highlight the national brands available at Sears, including Levi, OshKosh, Carter's, and Lee and Jordache, along with Sears brand Lands' End.

But new ads for the company's soft lines don't mean it is letting up on its marketing push in appliances, a key area for the Hoffman Estates, Ill.-based retailer. It says its Blue Appliance Crew work, which began appearing last fall, will also headline in the new campaign. Sears' executives have reportedly credited that campaign with the company's first gain in appliance market share in several years. Those ads emphasize the human element in appliance sales, and Sears' staff even provides on-the-spot price comparisons.



In addition to its Kenmore brand, Sears sells many other brands, and has been expanding into higher-end choices. For example, it recently announced an exclusive deal with Bosch Linea Refrigeration for counter-depth side-by-side products. And it's also trying to carve out a niche in rebate management, teaching shoppers about the money available from Energy Star rebates, and helping them navigate the process. (Sears continues to be the leading retailer for Energy Star-qualified appliances.) The company claims it is the only channel that allows consumers to "shop and compare the top eight appliance brands, making it the number one online destination for appliance research."

Sears is also trying to blaze new trails in multichannel options, and is continually expanding its ShopYourWay initiative, available at both Sears and Kmart, also owned by Sears Holdings. For instance, and now offer more than 100,000 tools and 300,000 books. Its Web-to-store operations text consumers when orders are ready. And it says Sears2go, its mobile commerce site, is the first on-the-go technology offered by a U.S. retailer. In addition to its in-store and curbside pickup options, it also offers third-party pickup, and has extended its Ready in Five guarantee to all.

So far, shoppers don't seem impressed. Several weeks ago, Sears released fourth-quarter earnings showing significant declines in both earnings and ales, with comparable-store sales in the U.S. sinking 11% at its flagship brand.

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