Will a new designer collaboration be a smash hit for Target?

Discussion
Photo: Target
Mar 27, 2018
George Anderson

Target CEO Brian Cornell has been talking up his company’s progress in a variety of venues since 2018 began. He has pointed to investments the chain has made in its people, private labels, remodels, supply chain and technology as factors in driving more traffic and sales at Target’s stores and online. Soon, the retailer will turn to a long-time differentiator — a limited edition collaboration with an iconic designer — to further boost its fashion reputation, and sales along with it.

Hunter for Target, slated to debut to the general public on April 14, brings together the British brand known for the famous Wellington “Wellies” boot, rain coats, bags and accessories. The line, which features bright colors, will include more than 300 items and span clothing and accessories for women, men, kids and toddlers. It will also feature products for home and outdoors — some are firsts for Hunter — including coolers, hammocks and sunshades.

Prices for the items in the line will range from $5 to $80, with most under $30.

“A pairing between our two brands made perfect sense,” said Mark Tritton, executive vice president and chief merchandising officer at Target, in a statement. “From the very beginning, we worked with Hunter to develop a well-designed, affordable collection that’s all about fun, optimism and accessible adventure for the entire family. The colorful, all-weather pieces found in this line are made for enjoying the outdoors — rain or shine — on any budget.”

Photos: Target

Target is giving REDcard holders online access to order exclusive colors in select styles on April 7, a week ahead of the line’s public rollout.

While Target has achieved sales success with the launch of 12 separate private label lines over the past 18 months, the chain is under competitive pressure from a wide variety of rivals including Amazon.com.

A survey conducted by Coresight Research found that 30 percent of respondents who had increased spending on clothes on Amazon last year had shifted some of their dollars away from Target. The study’s results are in keeping with research that has shown an overlap between Target customers and Amazon Prime members.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS: Will Hunter for Target continue the chain’s track record of success for limited-edition collaborations with designers? Would Target benefit from having more of these lines or does it have the scope and cadence of these partnerships about right? How might early access for REDcard holders affect sales and card applications?

Braintrust
"Target does a great job in identifying the brands to partner with based on their knowledge about their consumer."
"Given Walmart’s recent announcement for new brands, Target is having its impact on fashion sales at its biggest rival."
"Watch out everyone, Target is on a roll, creating a new generation of Targetistas!"

Join the Discussion!

9 Comments on "Will a new designer collaboration be a smash hit for Target?"


Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
Cathy Hotka
BrainTrust

All sellers of commodity brands need to fight back with unique, private-label offerings that drive customer curiosity and traffic. Collaborations with Missoni, Lilly Pulitzer and others have been successful and the Hunter collection will be, too.

Jennifer McDermott
BrainTrust

I completely agree, Cathy. I have seen so much buzz about this on social media — I have no doubt the conversation will convert into sales.

Joy Chen
BrainTrust

Target is best-in-class in executing these brand partnerships in fashion and beauty. Hunter will be another partnership that will be extremely successful based on its high brand awareness, product exclusivity and good price value. Target does a great job in identifying the brands to partner with based on their knowledge about their consumer.

Frank Riso
BrainTrust

Hunter will continue Target’s success record with yet another designer. Given Walmart’s recent announcement for new brands, Target is having its impact on fashion sales at its biggest rival. Target does it right by only having one-at-a-time designer events so as not to confuse their customers with too many choices and so the customer knows that the time to react and buy is now. The early access for REDcard holders is a perk that cannot be taken away — after all, Target owes these shoppers for some past indiscretions. When it comes to fashion over Walmart, Target still is the leader.

Neil Saunders
BrainTrust

These initiatives are great at differentiating Target and drawing attention to the brand. However, past collaborations have seen mixed success.

The Victoria Beckham collaboration was poorly executed in stores and did not sell as well as Target hoped. Before that, the Marimekko venture was lackluster in terms of performance.

The bottom line is that Target needs to make much more effort in stores when showcasing its latest ventures. Given it has shown more merchandising prowess as of late, we will hopefully see a step change.

Cynthia Holcomb
BrainTrust

Watch out everyone, Target is on a roll, creating a new generation of Targetistas! Reinventing itself after a decade or so off the fast track of creating fashion, style, and inspiration for the whole family.

Rebecca Fitts
Guest

Hunter has great brand recognition and is in demand, however, it does have limited uses (if you think rain gear). I believe it will bring continued success for the Target, probably not the same way as the Missoni partnership did, but still good. They’ve slowed down in past years with some of the partnerships and I think they could do a few more without reaching saturation. With the issues that Target has had with security they need incentives for potential card holders. Seeing as some of these partnerships have crashed their site, it could increase card sales.

Ricardo Belmar
BrainTrust

Target has had great success with this approach, so long as their in-store merchandising execution is done properly. The advance sale for REDcard holders is a great move to provide benefit and reward to cardholders. I expect we will continue to see more of this from Target as we are seeing with department stores and the ongoing trend of developing unique private label lines. Target is very smart to leverage known brands to partner with to create these exclusives for themselves combining the best of both worlds of private label and designer items.

Mike Osorio
BrainTrust

These collaborations have always made good sense to drive the sense of fashion leadership vs. Walmart. In-store execution must be the focus this time around to give the consumer an experience aligned with the partnered brand’s image. If Target executes well, this will be a strong defense against the ongoing success of Amazon to pull more shopper dollars away from Target and others. It won’t kill the Amazon trend, but it will keep Target in the game. There is plenty of room for both to play in this space.

wpDiscuz
Braintrust
"Target does a great job in identifying the brands to partner with based on their knowledge about their consumer."
"Given Walmart’s recent announcement for new brands, Target is having its impact on fashion sales at its biggest rival."
"Watch out everyone, Target is on a roll, creating a new generation of Targetistas!"

Take Our Instant Poll

How likely is Hunter for Target to be a big hit for the retailer?

View Results

Loading ... Loading ...