Target hopes Awesome Shop, Pinterest save sales

After Target’s unfortunately timed credit/debit card data breach right before Christmas, many people vowed to never shop at the retailer again. Since then, Target has been on major damage-control duty offering free credit monitoring services and deals to customers. With sales still declining, Target is now putting a large focus on its online store’s Awesome Shop.

target awesome ship

The Target Awesome Shop (still in beta and the brainchild of Target’s RAD team) allows you to shop by top-pinned items (and those with a four-star guest review or higher) organized by categories like home, baby, entertainment, etc. You can either pin the item directly to your Pinterest board from the site, or click the “Details” to get you one step closer to impulse buying on Target’s online store. Some Target stores have been using the popularity of Pinterest before the launch of Awesome Shop by marking certain items as highly-pinned.

According to Target’s CMO Jeff Jones, Pinterest has accounted for 70 percent of its online traffic since it launched Rich Pins in early 2013. While  Awesome Shop is still in beta, Target is paying close attention to guest feedback and says they may even add more social platforms to the mix.

Have your played around on Awesome Shop yet? Do you think it’s strong enough to save Target’s bruised brand?

Brand stunts that have people talking

I’ve always been a sucker for cool brand stunts or innovations. Who doesn’t love something refreshingly creative and executed well? We’ve pulled together some recent marketing efforts that have people talking and becoming fans of the brands. Tell us about others you’ve seen lately!

Samsung: All eyes on the S4
The new Samsung Galaxy S4 knows when you’re looking at the screen. So Samsung decided to challenge people in Zurich to stare at the screen in order to get a discount on the phone. If you could stare at the screen for 60 minutes, you’d get the phone for FREE. The best part was that Samsung tried to include distractions to get people to look away (e.g. a guy on fire, a motorcycle crash, etc.). Really fun stuff!

Budweiser: Buddy Cup
Budweiser Brazil used the common action of toasting drinks to create the Buddy Cup, which allows drinkers to become Facebook friends just by clinking their cups. The cup has a chip that integrates with Facebook and once the person holding the cup connects their Facebook page with the cup, they’re ready to make friends! Budweiser hopes this technology will bring the brand closer to it consumers and plans to use  the cups at events it sponsors.

7UP: The Melting Machine
In Buenos Aires, 7UP created an ice “vending” machine that keeps drinks cold and lets people passing by grab a frosty beverage as the ice melts. They’re also challenged to guess what time the last can will be freed from the ice on Twitter for a chance to win a free six-pack of 7UP. This helps them earn new followers and get people talking about the brand and sharing pictures and stories from interacting with the melting machine. Pretty fun an inexpensive for them.

Talisker Whiskey: Talisker Storm
Talisker Whiskey created a 25-foot interactive installation to take their Scottish weather on tour to promote their new libation, Talisker Storm. Talisker’s distillery is on the Isle of Skye, one of the most northern islands of Scotland, where they’re known for their weird weather phenomenons (like a little drizzle quickly turning into a massive storm). The whiskey-makers brought their crazy weather to whiskey-drinkers across Europe and created the video below when they kicked off the tour in London. The simulated storm had fog, rain, lighting and high winds and people could take part in the storm (meaning get absolutely soaked) to  then get a glass of Talisker Storm to warm themselves. I also love the dapper old gent who Talisker hired as their weatherman.

Domino’s: DomiCopter
Okay, so this isn’t technically real, yet (so they say), BUT Domino’s UK released a video on YouTube showing the DomiCopter delivering pizzas and it already has over a million views. While the video was probably just created for publicity rather than teasing the actual delivery service, it’s still kind of cool to dream of flying pizzas one day.