K-mart might be turning off the bluelight. I visited the new concept store, Sears Essential, developed by the folks at the Sears Corp to “reinvent” the totally dead K-Mart brand into a place where you would actually want to shop. It’s really sad day for your brand when SEARS is more fashionable than you.
All in all Sears Essential is like “Sears Lite”. All the products you expect from a Sears—mid to low range quality clothing, power tools, and undergarments. Oh and yes, Ty Pennington is EVERYWHERE, like some sort of Domestic God leading us to cross marketing redemption via over priced fuchsia sheets. But at least SE is clean and employee actually seem somewhat happy to be at work. That’s a lot more than I could say about “K”.
I’m sure the folks at K-Mart/SEARS spent tons of money coming up with this idea. Now K-Mart/SEARS could have saved tons of money by hiring me. This is what I would have told them . . .
- 1. Clean Your Store. Every K-mart I’ve ever been to is overwhelmingly junky. Yep. If your going to have a store that looks like a mess, you’ve got to have really cheap products and labor issues.
- 2. Get Cool Celebs/Fashion Designers to Have Lines. Jacyln Smith hasn’t been cool since 1982. Pay some fabulous designer oodles of money, like Betsey Johnson or Marc Jacobs, to design a cheaper bridge line for your store. If there’s anyone who can get fashionistas to head into a K-Mart, it’s Marc Jacobs. It worked for Target.
- 3. Have Things in Stock. Why does it always seem that K-Mart never, ever, has what you want in stock. It’s like the concept of stock management, employed with amazing precision by Wal-Mart, totally skipped the management team at K-Mart.
- 4. Completely Change Your Name. K-Mart, the name, has been T-K-O by Wal-Mart and Target. Although Sears Essential isn’t exactly the name I would have picked—it’s better than the old one.