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JC Penney- A Lesson in Branding

Last week we blogged about Yahoo’s new logo and we are going to stay on a similar topic this week- brands.  Another “branding” story that we have been following is JC Penney.

JC Penney has been around a long time – over 100 years. As a department store they have over the years focused on providing their customers with affordable products by using coupons and sales to get people into the stores.

Starting around 2010 the company started making some interesting business decisions to try to boost sales. They went away from their coupon and sales approach to more of an “every day low price” strategy. They also tried “a store within a store” idea where a certain item or brand would almost have a little specialty store within the department store. The company also, like Yahoo, was tempted to change up their logo to give things a fresh look. Some interesting ideas but JC Penney got into some trouble. Their sales tanked.

After some big changes at the top – some people were fired and then rehired, they are trying to get back on track. Earlier this month it was announced that they have hired a new marketing guru to help them out.

Our take away from this branding story is that you have to be loyal to your brand. You might be tired of the same old sales approach and the same old logo but your customers might not like it if you change it up. Obviously JC Penney was trying to attract some new customers but they made a mess of things in the process.

Your brand is everything. If you are fortunate to have one that has stood the test of time, treat it with care.

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