JCPenney Leverages Personalization and Positivity for Back-to-School Campaign
“Our goal is to generate a lot of positive energy around JCPenney and teens,” said Kirk Waidelich, senior VP of marketing at JCPenney. “‘Bend the Trend’ really lets kids express their unique personalities. That’s what JCPenney is offering, and how we’re going to start to change the perspective of JCPenney.”
A core component of this campaign is an interactive styler, powered by Fluid’s Visual Mix & Match platform, that lives on JCPenney’s website and Tumblr page. Using the styler, kids can mix and match apparel and accessories from different style trends within JCPenney’s back-to-school collection to create a one of a kind outfit, which they can visualize in a photorealistic way. They can then add their entire outfit directly to the shopping cart, and share it on social media.
The social sharing aspect of ‘Bend the Trend’ was critical to JCPenney, who declared Aug. 12 “National Shout-Out Day.” The goal was to encourage kids and teens to post online compliments about their style choices to their friends and networks using #ShoutOutDay. JCPenney supported the initiative by giving its own shout-outs to anyone talking about personal style on social media, as well as offering digital compliment cards on its Tumblr page that teens could share to compliment their friends who posted pictures of themselves in their back to school outfits. They also launched a massive influencer marketing campaign, sponsoring an online video series on AwesomenessTV that featured YouTube talents such as the Merrell Twins, Sierra Marie, Paulina Cerrilla and Josh Tryhane sporting their own style mashed outfits while promoting “National Shout Out Day.”
‘Bend the Trend’ also incorporates a charitable element, as throughout the month of August JCPenney is inviting customers to round up their in-store or online purchases to the nearest dollar to support JCPenney Cares, who will donate those contributions to non-profit organizations focused on personal enrichment and educational development.