Making J.C. Penney Cool Again!
Yesterday’s Associated Press interview with the new CEO of J.C. Penney, Ron Johnson, can help us gather some insight into the new store changes. In a nutshell, he said he plans to change the shopping experience, shun heavy discounting and sell services along with products, like he did at Apple.
Under his leadership, Penney executives said they will have Martha Stewart develop mini-shops starting this year and outlined plans in the next two years to add a Main Street, a series of 80 to 100 brand shops in stores similar to the Martha Stewart ones. They also plan to open areas in all stores called Town Square, a place that will offer services and expert advice, similar to Apple’s Genius bars.
Penney is not disclosing what specific new services will be offered in the stores, but for a department store application, that makes me think of a concierge service, and I’m wondering how that will be implemented.
There’s been a lot of buzz about a future in eCommerce Omni-Channel Retailing, and leveraging the best of social, mobile and interactive technologies. Wow, that’s a mouthful!
So, for now, how does all this affect you and I? Well for one thing – we are going to be able to watch retail history in the making. It’s going to be interesting!
And as a PR and Marketing professional, I am most impressed with Johnson’s use of the media to disseminate his message. I feel like I’m watching a modern day P.T. Barnum in action!
We will keep you updated and we plan to visit the new J.C. Penney as soon as possible – how about you?
If you’re a new reader, welcome!! You can find out why the Strategic Shopping Network is unique, here. We will continue to keep our Strategic Shoppers posted on how these changes will affect us…stay tuned.