Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Sudden departure for JCP's President (Target's former CMO)

Well that was fast!  Just 8 months after hiring Target's former CMO, JCP is cutting him looseIn a terse statement issued late Monday, JCP gave no reason for the abrupt departure of Michael Francis, a top Target executive brought in last October to help redefine the store's brand.. As president, Francis was responsible for the marketing of a controversial new pricing plan that aimed to get rid of hundreds of sales events. He also oversaw merchandising and product development.

JCP has stated that their CEO, Ron Johnson, will assume direct responsibility and oversight of the company's marketing and merchandising functions. The surprise move comes as the department store chain is scrambling to reverse a sharp drop in customer counts and plummeting sales after JCP’s new pricing strategy – introduced on Feb. 1st – ended up turning off customers, who are accustomed to coupons and big markdowns.


Critifur said...

That is too bad, I like much of what he was doing in marketing, but I can see how he was going against the grain with his pricing plan. It was too far out of the comfort zone of consumers, and strangely confusing. I think he should have stuck with the visual updates but stayed with the usual pricing. I was also disappointed with the products in store, because the products were still the same, and I was never drawn to JCP products to begin with. So even though I wanted to support the new marketing strategy, including the hiring of Ellen and placing gay families in the catalog, I couldn't get past the actual merchandise.

Target Addict said...

Critifur, I agree. I rarely visit JCP, but when I did I found that their "non-sale" strategy didn't really change the way merchandise was arranged on the floor. Case in point: one of the only labels I like there is MNG, and in the womens dept. they still had a "full priced" MNG clothing section and then off to the side they had racks of "best price" (meaning on sale) MNG items. In other words, they still had "clearance racks", even if they weren't willing to call it that.