DFS seeks first CMO to build brand

Furniture retailer DFS is looking to hire its first chief marketing officer with a brief to bolster brand building activity.

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The retailer, which spent £90m on advertising its 75 stores in 2010, according to The Nielsen Company, currently focuses its marketing on promotional activity designed to increase footfall.

Plans to launch more brand building campaigns, however, are being developed, and the firm wants to hire a marketer with “more classical brand” experience to come on board in the next 12 months.

Ian Filby, chief executive of DFS, says: “There is an enormous opportunity to build the DFS brand and make it a loved brand.

“For what it sought to achieve, marketing is being run incredibly well and efficiently. But the focus of the company was to have a big advertising spend, the focus of which was to get people in-store on a Sunday and that is a really important part of the DFS model but it is not brand-building.”

DFS will be hoping that the new recruit will help lift sales. Same store income, excluding VAT, fell 0.7% in the nine months to 30 April.

Filby, who joined DFS in September last year and was previously retail brand development director at Boots, will look after brand marketing in the interim.

The incoming CMO will not take a seat on the board.

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