A Case Study in Brand Differentiation
As a long-time “big and tall shopper,” I only shop from a handful of companies. Two of these happen to be Rochester Big and Tall and Casual Male XL. While owned by the same company, both have positioned themselves to different segments of the big and tall market. Rochester sells more upscale, pricier, higher-end merchandise, while Casual Male offers more affordable apparel. In my opinion, both have done an excellent job of differentiating themselves brandwise on their Web sites and in their stores with the products they offer.
With so little to choose from as a certified “big guy,” I buy from both and am on both of their e-mail lists. This week I received e-mails from both companies, and to my amazement — and a bit of horror — they were essentially the same message and offer. Both carried the same subject line (We want you back! SAVE 20% NOW on your order), showing up in my inbox on the same day within a few hours of each other. And when you open them, you get the same offer (although Casual Male's offer allows you to “grab” a coupon).
I assume that other big and tall folks out there got the same offer as well. So doesn’t this work directly against their branding? Am I hypersensitive to this because I'm in the business? Does this matter to the average consumer? Take a look at the e-mails for yourself (click on the images below), and let me know your thoughts.
Jim Gilbert is president of Gilbert Direct Marketing Inc., a full-service catalog and direct marketing agency. His LinkedIn profile can be viewed at www.linkedin.com/in/jimwgilbert. You can e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org, follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/gilbertdirect or read his blog at http://gilbertdirectmarketing.wordpress.com.
Jim Gilbert has been creating direct marketing programs that drive superior ROI for almost 30 years. Fluent in consumer or B-to-B, creative, operations, and analytics, he marries the strategic and tactical sides of direct and social media marketing in a seamless fashion that gets results. He's CEO of a multidiscipline direct marketing agency, Gilbert Direct Marketing, Inc., which focuses on direct mail, catalogs, DRTV, telemarketing, print, alternative direct marketing media and social media marketing. Jim has been involved in start-ups, expansions and turnarounds, and is an expert in helping multichannel marketers get to the "next level." He's a former adjunct professor, teaching direct marketing at Miami International University, and is President of the Board of Directors of the Florida Direct Marketing Association. Jim loves to talk direct marketing, and has done many lectures on direct and social media marketing.