In February, Target launched its first brand campaign 'Life Tested' in seven years. Here, Target GM Marketing Jamima White reveals it was part of a 24 month journey to reposition the department store. 

What has been the process behind this brand reset?

At Target, we have spent the last two years undertaking a strategic brand reset focussed on our future. We recently launched our new brand platform, ‘That’s Target’, across Australia which has been very exciting.

The platform was initially launched at Christmas, with honest and relatable stories featuring people from all walks of life, testing the quality, and showcasing the great value of Target’s hero Christmas products. This was a few months later than we had originally planned due to the lockdowns in Australia last winter and the difficulties in filming advertising at that time.

Our ‘Life Tested’ campaign, the second phase of our brand reset, launched in February. The campaign is focussed on raising awareness for our affordable quality products that are made with ethically sourced materials, are accessible for all Australian families to rely on, and are tested for everyday life.

The brand relaunch has given us the chance to refresh the way we go to market and certainly the pandemic has accelerated the increase of online and omni-channel shopping experiences with our customers. As part of the launch, we invested heavily in digital, creating a fully integrated omni-channel marketing program across national broadcasts and complemented by an extensive social media, video, and digital campaign.

What were some of the key steps in this project?

Customer insights were the basis of the brand campaign and that’s where we started in terms of ensuring we really understood what our customers valued and expected from Target, and what we stand for, affordable quality for everyday life.

We went back to all of our research, and it became really clear that what’s important to our customers is quality. Specifically, that Target quality is really durable, and it stands up to the test of time. That clear and simple quality position was really the heritage of the brand and being able to have the confidence in Target products so that every time our customers wear them, touch them and use them, they feel the satisfaction of knowing that we’ve made sure they stand up to the test of everyday life.

From there it was all around bringing those really warm and relatable stories about how our customers use our products to life. Family is at the heart and soul of our business, and we really wanted to convey those stories of people from all walks of life whilst being able to communicate the quality and sustainability attributes of our products.

It was also really important for us to focus on the digital amplification of our campaign, so we increased our digital, influencer and content marketing to reach even more customers across Australia as well as airing our TV commercials in both metropolitan and regional locations. Continuing to innovate and improve our customer experience is a key part of the Target digital strategy and in how we brought this campaign to life.

When did you commence working on the brand campaign?

We have been undertaking a strategic brand reset over the last two years and are incredibly proud to have launched our new brand platform ‘That’s Target’ to the community.

The campaign encapsulates the spirit of Target through the eyes of those who love it most – Australian families. A key part of the campaign was about bringing honest and relatable stories featuring people from all walks of life to the forefront whilst showcasing the quality of our products being put to the test to demonstrate our understanding of how families live and, what’s important to them when it comes to quality.

It features a series of moments that showcase the outstanding quality products that Target offers to Mum’s and their families. Quality that stands up to the test of everyday life at prices that won’t cost the earth and can be trusted for generations to come.

Once we created the concepts for the brand launch, we were then firmly focused on how we brought that to life digitally. From inspiration, awareness, and add to cart experiences, we wanted to ensure that we invested heavily in digital to create a fully integrated omni-channel marketing program that met the digital needs of our customers.

What channels was the campaign shared across? 

The ‘Life Tested’ campaign is a long-term, fully integrated marketing campaign that has been launched across our owned and paid channels, and this of course includes our website, Target App and Target social channels, as well as an extensive paid media program that continues across all major paid channels.

We have used our Market Mix Modelling to inform a balanced, integrated media buy that is focussed on reach and frequency, and specifically geographically extending our audience as our omni-channel and online business is important to Target and our customers. Now that Australia has come out of lockdown it has been great to be able to use mass media such as OOH again for Target to extend that reach, for example. We are continuing to monitor our investment as the campaign will run long-term.

What are the next stages of this rebrand and when will we see them launch?

At Target, we’re really focused on the future, and communicating to our customers in really warm and relatable ways about our products so that they understand who we are and what we stand for. That’s Quality, That’s Style, That’s Value. That’s Target.

The life tested campaign will be something that we continually refresh and will run across the course of the next two years. What customers will begin to see is the products within the campaign being refreshed overtime and the storytelling being updated to explain the real durability and experience of testing our products in everyday life. We will also be highlighting more of the sustainable elements of our products as the campaign continues.

We’re also focused on looking at our different eco-systems and curating content specifically for those platforms including stories of our team members testing our products, and social campaigns sharing the customer love coming through for the brand and our products.

A big part of ensuring that we’re connecting with our customers overtime, is continuing our customer research that we began before we launched the new brand, to ensure that the storytelling we’re doing is resonating with our customers in a really meaningful way.

Where do you see the big opportunities?

For Target, we want to connect even more with our communities and provide them with more accessibility and more choice on how they wish to shop with us. Our digital ambitions are a key part of our strategy for the future, and we want to provide our customers with an outstanding omni-channel shopping experience.

The increase of online and omni-channel shopping experiences is really exciting and the power of storytelling in building customer love is so important. The opportunities to evolve in the space of storytelling in influencer and content led marketing both at the inspirational level for the brand, but also through ecommerce experiences via our website and our Target app, means we can create more personalised experiences to drive sales and marketing outcomes.

Our Target app is a key focus for us to make it easy for customers to shop and purchase our quality products and we are pleased with the growth in customers regularly using the app to engage with us.

Where do you see the big challenges?

At Target, we like to look at challenges as opportunities for growth. Retail is forever providing opportunities for those who continue to listen and respond to their customers’ needs while remaining relevant. Our team at Target have a clear strategy that we believe will take us into the future, and we’re very passionate about delivering on our brand promise of providing our customers with affordable quality for everyday life.

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