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Old Navy's Advertising

Read this story: Anonymous (2011), Old Navy Campaign Targets Men. Advertising Age June 18.

Imagine you have been hired as a consultant to the VP of marketing for Old Navy. The VP wants to get an objective opinion from someone outside the company who is familiar with current marketing basics.

Assignment:

(1) Write a memo critically analyzing Old Navy's promotion strategy. In particular, note that the company has decided to use online video instead of television. What assumptions did they make about the viewing habits of their target market? Do you believe their assumptions have a basis in reality? What could they have done differently and why?

Don't spend a lot of time digging in the company website. Focus on the background readings. There are no right answers; after all, we don't have inside information. You will be evaluated on your understanding of the background materials and your logic and reasoning. In particular, you need to show your understanding of the way a change in target market affects the company's promotion strategy.

Don't just rehash what the company did. Introduce a critical perspective. Use the readings from this module and feel free to incorporate what you learned in Modules 1-3 as well.

(2) Add a paragraph or two stating why you would NOT use a particular strategy and Why.

Solution Preview

Transitioning from television advertisements to online video is an opportunity to better address Old Navy's target market of the 25 to 35 year old male, based on the assumption that this demographic is more linked into online video and social media than other consumers engaged with television. The sea change in Old Navy's concept is trying to reach the identified target consumer directly, rather than through his girlfriend, wife, sister, or mother. Old Navy is assuming that social media and videos will reach the male consumer better and inspire him to buy more than television advertisements. Ultimately, they are trying a fresh approach to reach a new audience. Old Navy is working on defining the customer in order to better position its' product and gain more sales. In addition, the company has run qualitative research on its' customers which shows that more men are shopping for themselves, and more apt to buy multiple items upon finding something they like.

It is confusing, however, that Ms. Curtis-McIntyre, senior -VP Marketing states that men have a "no-BS mentality to the way" they shop, yet the new Old Navy videos are full of nonsense. Curtis-McIntyre points out that men know what they want, what they like, ...

Solution Summary

This solution evaluates Old Navy's advertising campaign targeting men. It includes examples.

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