Cue The Reindeer: Kohl's, Nordstrom Launch Holiday Campaigns

With Halloween safely behind them, retailers Nordstrom and Kohl’s are gearing up for the challenging holiday season, launching seasonal ad campaigns they hope help them stand out in the online onslaught.

Kohl’s is breaking its “Give Joy, Get Joy” broadcast campaign Nov. 6. The ads, from Energy BBDO, hinge on the department store’s promotional Kohl’s Cash, “and leverage it as a distinctive way for our customers to feel more joy this holiday, setting Kohl’s apart from the competition, driving traffic and customer engagement,” a spokesperson tells Marketing Daily.

Evoking the martial spirit of Christmas shopping — with throngs from team Red catapulting gifts into team Green — a reindeer-riding woman wades through the crowd to explain that this Christmas, Kohl’s Cash means “everyone wins.”

The social-media component includes a custom Kohl’s Cash emoji that auto-populates when tweeting a #KohlsCash hashtag. And it’s also adding seasonal Kohl’s Cash Snapchat Filter for in-store snaps. (In the first half of the year, it reports that 4 million customers have already used its Snap filters.)

As it has in the past, the Menomonee Falls, Wis.-based retailer is giving holiday shoppers $15 in Kohl’s Cash for every $50 they spend. But with more event sales, it says it’s most generous incentive ever. It’s also offering some 1,000 Black Friday Deals, Doorbusters and Cyber offers, both in stores and online. 

Over at luxury retailer Nordstrom, Christmas is about love, not war. The warm-and-fuzzy campaign reprises last year’s “Love, Nordstrom” effort. Shot by Danielle Levitt, ads highlight customers’ stories, focusing on the relationship they share with each other, their families, and of course, with Nordstrom, and depicts stories in larger-than-life holiday cards, which comes to life in video. Set to the melody of Ray Charles' "Ain't That Love," the campaign is running on digital, with print, out of home, social media, coffee sleeves and window displays.

Vignettes include a New York City firefighter, for instance, who grew up shopping at Nordstrom in Seattle, and now shops at the Nordstrom Rack; a customer who started shopping at Nordstrom 50 years and her sewing circle, who bonded over buying kids’ shoes at Nordstrom back in the day, and a woman who has been shopping at Nordstrom ever since she sat with Santa for photos.

The Seattle-based retailer is also continuing its partnership with New Balance and Shoes That Fit, and hopes to donate 25,000 pairs this year. The YMCA is also a recipient of its charitable efforts.

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