In a time when fast fashion, fueled off of trends, is ruling the general retail market—not to mention niche focuses like luxury and second-hand, which offer customers unique items that either come with high social status or low price ticket—large, veteran retailers like J. C. Penney have been having a hard time keeping up and maintaining their own lane in the race for our dollars.
Bloomberg.com is reporting that JCP’s losses (they’ve been losing) have widened to $348 million dollars from $163 million last year the same time. Founded in 1902, now 111 years old, the company isn’t taking the losses lightly and have put a series of plans in place. The current CEO, Myron Ullman, aims to increase promotions and couponing; cut the company’s under-performing private labels; bring back basic clothing and sizes; add more specialty shops, like Sephora whose sales have been doing well; revamp their website; and of course borrow money.
Only time will tell if positive results of those planned strategies will pan out, but if you ask us, it all sounds a little underwhelming.
Many of J. C. Penney’s customers are “aging out,” so to speak. And those under 60 remaining (like my mother, for instance) are more fashion conscious and savvy, and prefer a Macy’s to a JCP. While, discounts and promotions might win her back, it won’t get thirty to forty-somethings lined up outside.
But here are 4 ways we think they can achieve that!
1. Blogging & Increased Social Media Presence
Did you know J. C. Penney has a twitter?! Neither did I, until I googled it. That’s a problem. They do have an impressive 117,589 followers, but still lagging behind Macy’s’ 180K; Nordstrom’s 248K; Walmart’s 325K; and Target’s 555K. Maybe more twitter exclusive discounts (they occasionally tweet discount codes) and wittier tweets may do the trick?
And it really does pay to blog, especially if you already have an audience to work with. Blogging, which so many companies are doing, can introduce the same products they’ve always had in fun, creative, and exciting new ways. (We’d like to think we know a thing or three about this.) A blogger collaboration wouldn’t hurt either. Think Susie Bubble or Man Repeller would be up for it?