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Target makes bold mobile statement to drive Lilly Pulitzer sales

Target is leaning heavily on mobile to make the most of its buzzed-about tie-in with the Lilly Pulitzer brand, leveraging social media, SMS and email to target style-savvy young consumers.

The collection is employing social media tactics, deals through text messaging and email updates, but the most exciting feature is its digital party available through mobile.

“Marketing is often a numbers game, producing as much content as possible is the goal but appearing stale and repetitive is the obvious downside,” said Mark Cluett, marketing manager at Polar, Toronto. “By taking unique approaches like this, Target ensures they differentiate themselves from the noise and own a unique path for original content and ideation which thrives on mobile.

“Web traffic is consistently crossing over to mobile where the vast majority of content is consumed and interacted with on smartphones,” he said. “Without a doubt, mobile is driving sales as potential customers are researching and shopping on their phones.

“Ignoring the mobile space when it comes to retail is of outright detriment to your 2015 sales strategy.”

Lilly Pulitzer is a high-end brand that focuses on bright colors, bold prints and styles for spring and summer. The collaboration with Target was originally announced in January and incited a large discussion on social media and other publications where fans and experts weighed in on their opinions about the partnership.

Partying with Pulitzer
A page on Target’s mobile-optimized Web site allows users to transform their current setting into a Lilly Pulitzer-filled party complete with music and featured products.

Consumers access the Web site on their phone or tablet and explore the space of the party by simply moving the mobile device. Music and ambient noise of the party is played to coincide with the scene.

The device acts as special goggles as if permitting users to see through a portal to another space embodying spring, summer and fun.

While traveling through the scene, products from the upcoming spring line are featured with the Target Bullseye logo next to it. Once clicked, a pop-up screen presents itself showing product details and the price.

Once the spring line launches on April 19, these items will be available for purchase.

The collection is only available for a limited time so the brand is pulling out all the stops to drive sales and create buzz around the launch.

Consumers are also encouraged to text Lilly to Target’s mobile number and receive updates surrounding the line. Reminders and deals will be sent to subscribing mobile users for the impending launch.

Email updates will be sent out as well.

Instagram is featuring sponsored posts from Target’s social media apparel division, Targetstyle advertising the Lilly Pulitzer line. The ads also link to the Lily for Target and Lilly Pulitzer page as well as a hashtag #Lillyfortarget and a link to shop in the future.

The lookbook was also released for a sneak peak of merchandise available for mobile viewing.

Mobile masterpieces
This is just one of the many ways Target has developed unique ways to drive up sales through mobile.

The retailer’s is known for its social media accounts full of aesthetically pleasing pictures featuring products it sells with a focus on color and high engagement rates (see more).

Also, recently it spiked sales with a digitally interactive art exhibit called Target Too that came with an accompanying application where visitors purchase merchandise featured at the art gallery (see more).

“It is imperative brands come up with out-of-the-box marketing ideas in general,” Jeremy Gilman,strategy director for brand marketing and customer experience at DMI. “That said it is important for brands to think about how they can break through to their target audiences especially on their smallest, but most-used screen.
“The party experience is strongly tied to the Lilly Pulitzer brand and is something that their target audience will be interested in and share with their peers,” he said. “Ecommerce transactions from mobile devices is currently around 27 percent.
“However, we believe this campaign will have an advantage. Social sharing and this unique mobile experience will allow for Target to reach a broader audience and increase sales.”

Final Take
Brielle Jaekel is editorial assistant on Mobile Commerce Daily and Mobile Marketer, New York