Target plays up value for the holiday season

Associated Press


From a Broadway-style marketing campaign to more exclusive toys, Target wants to lure shoppers during the final critical months of the year. More importantly, though, it needs to convince shoppers that it’s the place for deals.

The Minneapolis-based retailer is heading into holidays a little bruised after seeing drops in customer traffic and a key revenue measure and acknowledging that it didn’t push the second part of its “Expect More, Pay Less” slogan. It hopes emphasizing value and some of the promotions that have worked in the past will win back customers.

Since becoming CEO two years ago, Brian Cornell has been trying to reinvigorate Target’s cheap-chic status and focusing on categories such as fashion, home furnishings and wellness items. But it stumbled with groceries and basics, and the trick for the holidays will be striking the right balance.

Despite the contentious presidential race, Cornell believes shoppers are more upbeat about their financial situation, given low unemployment, less-expensive foods and cheaper gas.

Here’s some of what shoppers will see:


About 60 percent of Target’s marketing messages this holiday season will be about value, up about 20 percent from last year. The retailer will repeat some of last year’s promotions such as 10 Days of Deals, which offer distinct deals each day.

Target is unveiling Wondershop, which will offer more than 2,000 seasonal items that include ornaments under $3.


Target is increasing the number of items shoppers will find only at its stores. Among them: 1,800 new or exclusive toys, about 15 percent more than last year.

Another exclusive is a 10-disc box set from singer Garth Brooks, which includes his new album and features the 25th anniversary edition of “Friends in Low Places.”