Ron Johnson. Do you recognize the name? I didn’t either, but he’s had a profound impact on your retail experience. He is the innovator behind both Target and Apple’s retail experience. My friend Jasmine and I were having a conversation today about how where you purchase clothes is almost as important as what you purchase. Even though they may sell the same shirts at Wal Mart as they do at Old Navy or Macys, no one wants to say they got it at Wal Mart. Further, going to Target is a lot more fun and feels more upscale than shopping at Wal Mart but they sell the same items.
His key changes for JCPenny are reducing the number of sales they have so shoppers are more likely to shop all the time as opposed to waiting and hoping for a sale, creating smaller sections of JCPenny, and offer specialty services although we don’t know specifics to what these services will be quite yet. They idea behind these changes is that shoppers go to particular stores because of experiences and brand image. Ron Johnson also changed the JCPenny logo to look like an American flag.
JCPenny’s market share has fallen to 31 percent last year. More stores are trying to compete and succeeding while JCPenny’s is falling behind. He hopes that making these changes will lead JCPenny to become a premier retailer, one of America’s favorite stores.
Ron Johnson encourages you to look at Apple for evidence of his success. From an interview with Ron Johnson he says,
“You’ll start to see the experience change month by month. Everyone thinks it’s an overnight success but it never is. I was at Apple from 2000 to 2011, but it wasn’t until 2004 that the iPod became an important part of people’s lives. It wasn’t until 2007 that Apple reinvented the phone. It wasn’t until 2009 that Apple launched the iPad. But we look at it today and we feel Apple had always been beloved. It took time and this will take time as well.”
Do you think this will be enough? Will you try shopping at JCPenny even if you didn’t before?