Media & Marketing

THE relaunch of David Jones in Perth this week is testament to the immense power of hound’s tooth and a strong brand.

The strength of the brand and its brand equity is all the more impressive in a market where the retailer has been absent for 24 years.

The positive reception David Jones has received in the Perth marketplace is interesting, considering it has re-entered WA at the cost of a family business.

There is often strong resistance to national brands entering the local market and swallowing up home-grown traders.

The strength of the brand is proof of the power of strong national press advertising and the potency of a carefully considered strategic approach to marketing.

History can be a valuable weapon in the marketing arsenal and David Jones leans heavily on its long commitment to the national retail industry.

The three-stage launch of David Jones in Perth was developed to gently introduce clients to the David Jones brand in the familiar Aherns environment.

The retailer’s focus on quality and the alignment of top brands, particularly in the fashion arena with the David Jones brand, is perhaps part of the story.

David Jones chief executive officer Peter Wilkinson claims David Jones was able to leverage the strong commitment of the 800 Aherns staff in Perth.

“They were wonderful ambassadors from day one and they recognised that if the company had to move on from family ownership, it wasn’t bad to move into David Jones,” Mr Wilkinson said,

It wasn’t just the staff that supported the second coming of

the national retailer – research undertaken in the market suggested there was quite strong residual sentiment in the market.

The brand stock that David Jones carries has been crafted around the results of the retail research.

The David Jones stores in Perth currently are only carrying 80 per cent of their total brand portfolio.

By the end of the year, when the refurbishment of all the stores is complete, the city store will include in-store Armani, Collezioni and Burberry concept stores.

These high-profile brands lend a little of their glamour to the David Jones brand and confirm the retailer’s position in the high-profile fashion industry.

However, it’s not just the strength of the brand – the three-stage launch of the new retail outlets has maintained interest in the retailer.

The launches create excitement and events that the retailers can then leverage for media attention.

The launches have been developed on the idea of David Jones as a destination, rather than just another retailer.

City retailers have been struggling to keep in step with the big suburban shopping centres in the past few years, however the arrival of David Jones in the city has created much-needed excitement and a new reason for people to come into the city.

There was a crowd of shoppers taking in the spectacle of the launch on the Murray Street Mall this week.

“Oh David Jones, they have such good-quality clothes,” one elderly shopper said.

It’s not a bad wrap for DJ’s, 24 years after they left Perth, and the timing couldn’t be better in a city retail centre that’s been crying out for some attention for a while now.

Just from looking at the activity at the east end of the Murray Street Mall, David Jones and Woolworths have swept away some of the cobwebs and invigorated this corner of the city.

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