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Promotion Strategies of Walmart and Nordstrom

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Promotion in Marketing

Promotion Strategy for Wal-Mart

Promotion is the role of educating, compelling and shaping customers’ buying decisions. For profit-making firms like Wal-Mart and Nordstrom, it is incredibly necessary. The corporate philosophy of Wal-Mart is not only to offer low-priced products, but to develop insight into the customer’s mind that the cost is cheap by proper pricing tactics. Wal-Mart aims to draw individuals from medium and low-income classes.

In contrast to other products, the company promotes itself as affordable to consumers. Wal-main Mart’s slogan in ads is, “We have lower prices than anyone else.” The organisation places a high-speed product in a high-visibility location in each segment to advertise the brand. It generates a sense that the other items would also be cheap because the first component is inexpensive (Zenith Management Consulting, “How to Exploit Wal-Mart’s Weaknesses”).

Promotion Strategies of Walmart and Nordstrom

Advertisement of Wal-Mart

Wal-Mart relies on website advertisements and an in-store TV network. The in-store network shows uninterrupted feeds of ads for items. Wal-Mart TV has about 130 million subscribers, rendering it the fifth largest TV television network in America. Nearly 2600 locations can be located on the Wal-Mart network. To put a single business commercial, marketers cost USD 137,000-USD 292,000. The commercial expenditure is dependent on the period and cumulative shops at which the commercial is shown. Based on regional tastes and circumstances, Wal-Mart tries to suit the broadcast more clearly according to the store location (Hays, “Wal-Mart Is Upgrading Its Vast In-Store Television Network”).

Promotion Mix of Wal-Mart

  • Advertisement: Wal-TV Mart’s network is very modern and an Internet-oriented device. It helps to deliver information about different divisions of the company. Wal-Mart expends almost 524 million USD for advertising. Besides television advertisement, the company also spends on newspaper and shopper marketing (Ries, “One Fix for Walmart’s Woes: Spend More on Better TV Advertising”). The advertisements of Wal-Mart are displayed on News 12, MSG Network, NY1, Nickelodeon channel, and the Lifetime (Freedlander, “Walmart Unveils New TV Ads [Video]–Updated”).
  • Direct Selling: Direct selling is a promotion strategy where products are sold directly to the people apart from permanent area. Wal-Mart sells its products through placing any order by means of online process. The product is shipped to the desired place of customer. It is one of the major earning sources for Wal-Mart.
  • Sales Promotion: For sales promotion, Wal-Mart essentially depends on discount method. The company uses online promotion techniques to induce the online customers. It provides holiday special which allows people to purchase discounted products through online. Through Wal-Mart credit card customers can be inspired to purchase more products. It is another form of sales promotion. Another method that Wal-Mart uses for sales promotion is ‘Rollback prices’ where the products are placed at very low cost for limited time (Corporate Watch, “ASDA/WAL-MART A Corporate Profile”).
  • Publicity: Publicity is one of the most prominent strategies for promotion. Wal-Mart participates in several charitable occasions and markets the brand as a community oriented enterprise. The company had faced negative publicity because of abuse towards employees, but to rectify the negative image, the company had embarked program for welfare of employees.

Wal-Mart’s Social Marketing

For improving the social marketing, Wal-Mart has developed their social media by purchasing Kosmix. Through this acquisition, Wal-Mart seeks to expand the ability of social marketing environment which has become a trend in present day scenario. The technology of Kosmix provides customers to use social site named ‘TweetBeat.com’ and also permits to see social contents and share information. However, besides social marketing, the company also needs to focus on the public relation and advertising (Heine, “Wal-Mart Buys Kosmix, Looks to Social Commerce Future”).  

Promotion Strategy for Nordstrom

Unlike Wal-Mart, Nordstrom does not spend heavily on television advertising; the advertising on television is shown in major occasions only. Maximum proportion of advertisement of Nordstrom is done through newspaper. The company provides an entire page advertisement in relation to yearly sales or holiday sales. Nordstrom places two catalogues each month which debut certain new products in every division during holiday season. The company also provides gifts during the holiday season which comprises of simple method to order directly through the catalogue. People who create an account in Nordstrom can access the catalogue, along with the individuals who register themselves online (King & Et. Al., “Nordstrom: A Marketing Analysis”).   

Advertising of Nordstrom

In comparison with advertising strategy of other apparel retailing companies such as Wal-Mart, Nordstrom has differentiated itself by taking the brand in a leading position in the online advertisement segment. In online advertisement, there is very little competition for Nordstrom and it has successfully remains ahead of the Wal-Mart. In the year 2008, the online business of Nordstrom was accounted as 169 million USD in first four months which was 15% more than second quarter sales of 2007. The number of website visitors has also increased considerably (Seeking Alpha, “Nordstrom Leads In Online Traffic Among High End Retailers”). 

Promotion Mix of Nordstrom

  • Advertising: Nordstrom is involved in strong advertising campaigns and many of them are straightly connected with online advertising. In the year 2005, Nordstrom had introduced ‘Nordstromsilverscreem.com’ which provides customer experience shopping with several entertainment tools such as music and video. The website of Nordstrom provides people to develop tailored remix of clothes on a model. The customers also can view new fashion trends and also can blend and match apparels according to their preference. The company wants to provide a mixed shopping experience with interactive media and innovative platform. It seeks to take risk in advertising and try to reach new customer segments (Penton Media, “Nordstrom Brings Shopping to Online Entertainment”).
  • Direct Sales: Through catalogue, Nordstrom directly sells their products at the e-business. The website of Nordstrom is simple to navigate. Users can choose from different available colors in relation to products and place order. It is the objective of Nordstrom to provide excellent customer service and variety of apparels to the customers.     
  • Sales Promotion: Nordstrom does not put much emphasis on one day limited offer, instead it focuses on three key sales which comprises of half yearly sales and centennial sales. In those events special sales promotions, gifts and deals are presented. Another sales promotion technique of Nordstrom is the MOD card. Through this card, the company can monitor a consumer’s buying behavior and spending pattern. By this card customers can gain points on each purchase and after certain limit customers also can gain gifts (King & Et. Al., “Nordstrom: A Marketing Analysis”).
  • Publicity: Publicity is one of the promotional strategies for Nordstrom. Nordstrom believes in ‘word of mouth’. For positive publicity, Nordstrom had donated 100000 USD to Apparel Lesotho Alliance to Fight Aids (ALAFA), a project to offer schooling and medicine for families that are affected with AIDS (Nordstrom, “Edun ‘ONE’ Tee”).

Nordstrom Social Marketing

Nordstrom has also made its move towards social media by purchasing HauteLook, a social media platform. Through this platform the company desires to enhance the advertisement of luxury products. Through the social site, Nordstrom can share the seasonal hit products and it is the future of promotional technique as the social site can accelerate the popularity of brand (Marsden, “Nordstrom Buys Social Commerce Platform for $270m: The Future of Luxury Advertising”).

Works Cited
  • Corporate Watch. “ASDA/WAL-MART A Corporate Profile”. September 01, 2011. Home, 2004. <http://www.corporatewatch.org/?lid=803>
  • Freedlander, David. “Walmart Unveils New TV Ads [Video]–Updated”. September 01, 2011. New York Observer, 2011. <http://www.observer.com/2011/walmart-rolls-out-advertising-blitz-video>
  • Heine, Christopher. “Wal-Mart Buys Kosmix, Looks to Social Commerce Future”. September 01, 2011. Incisive Interactive Marketing, 2011. <http://www.clickz.com/clickz/news/2044488/wal-mart-buys-kosmix-looks-social-commerce-future> 
  • Hays, Constance L. “Wal-Mart Is Upgrading Its Vast In-Store Television Network”. September 01, 2011. The New York Times Company, 2005. <http://www.nytimes.com/2005/02/21/business/media/21mart.html>
  • King, Justin. & Et. Al. “Nordstrom: A Marketing Analysis”. September 01, 2011. Pacific Lutheran University, No Date. <http://www.google.co.in/url?sa=t&source=web&cd=1&ved=0CBgQFjAA&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.plu.edu%2F~jorgenmr%2Fdoc%2Fnordstrom-marketing.doc&ei=vFxfTtGYMcnsrQfctNmSAQ&usg=AFQjCNHw0goQOrJqJazJOfwJkJPY4eM-Cw&sig2=EssL1v9ir_NFW_Xow80DZQ>    
  • Marsden, Paul. “Nordstrom Buys Social Commerce Platform for $270m: The Future of Luxury Advertising”. September 01, 2011. Social Commerce Today, 2011.    <http://socialcommercetoday.com/nordstrom-buys-social-commerce-platform-for-270m-the-future-of-luxury-advertising/>
  • Nordstrom. “Edun ‘ONE’ Tee”. September 01, 2011. Free Shipping, 2011. <http://shop.nordstrom.com/s/edun-one-tee/2906555> 
  • Penton Media. “Nordstrom Brings Shopping to Online Entertainment”. September 01, 2011. Promo magazine, 2005. <http://promomagazine.com/retail/nordstrom_online_ent_112305/>
  • Ries, Laura. “One Fix for Walmart’s Woes: Spend More on Better TV Advertising”. September 01, 2011. Ad & Marketing News, 2011. <http://adage.com/article/cmo-strategy/fix-walmart-s-woes-spend-tv-ads/229388/>
  • Seeking Alpha. “Nordstrom Leads In Online Traffic Among High End Retailers”. September 01, 2011. Article, 2008. <http://seekingalpha.com/article/94441-nordstrom-leads-in-online-traffic-among-high-end-retailers>
  • Zenith Management Consulting. “How to Exploit Wal-Mart’s Weaknesses”. September 01, 2011. Research, 2005. <http://www.zenith-consulting.com/research/walMart/Wal-Mart-Strategy.pdf>

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