Thursday, February 26, 2015

Sears, get serious.

I wrote about Sears yesterday. Today, I'll write a bit more.

I should say at the outset, I haven't been to a Sears since I went to the Santa Monica store in 2010, looking for sheets and towels for my daughter's college dorm room. We couldn't find anything we liked. Or any help.

Two weekends ago, I was in Raleigh, North Carolina, visiting the same daughter. I walked through a Sears store to get to another store in the mall.

That's my hands-on experience with Sears.

Probably more than Gordon Bowen ever had.

But that's besides the point.

Advertising cannot cure Sears.

But it's clear to me that a better product can.

Someone at Sears has to figure out how to combine low-prices and good service. That is, so long as they have thousands of bricks and mortar stores, they have to be at least as good as Amazon in satisfying customers.

Advertising can't do that.

Someone at Sears also has to figure out how to get their store-workers how to smile and be helpful. It would probably be good to have executives walk the stores--all the stores--every day.

Sears also has to figure out what they sell. The sheets I tried to buy five years ago had the same amount of cotton in them as Saran Wrap.

If Sears is strong with Kenmore, and Die Hard and Tires, fuck it, concentrate on your strengths to get people in the store.

Steal a page from Target from when they were hot. Designer loss-leaders.

Steal a page from Nordstrom: sales help that's actually helpful.

And steal a page from what Delta Airline's done in their advertising from Wieden and Sprint's done with Deutsch LA. Stand for something. Something other than 40% off.

I can't imagine that rebounding from lows is that different from rebuilding a basketball franchise. So look to what the San Antonio Spurs have built. Not the New York Knicks.

That is cultivating talent. Having a philosophy. Being consistent. And having strong leadership.

I know how to write ads not turn around retailers.

So it's fine to ignore this.

It's probably dumb as shit.

But it's better than what you're currently doing.

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