M&S outlines new store strategy for brands

Marks & Spencer will use 14 pilot stores to test in-store concepts for its revamped sub-brands as it looks to make more of them and turn them into brands in their own right.

/p/v/x/marks160.jpg

M&S has developed new brand identities including logos, colour schemes and brand values for each of its fashion sub-brands and has overhauled the way each brand is communicated in store.

Each fashion brand including Per Una, Autograph, Indigo, Classic, North Coast, Blue Harbour and Collezione, as well as its core M&S Man and Woman ranges and the Conran home brand, will have a dedicated “shop in shop” area in the pilot store so that the in-store environment communicates each brand’s distinctive values.

Each brand has a branded “anchor wall, iconic feature and mannequin style” making M&S’s stores more akin to a department store environment.

M&S has also revamped its visual merchandising and window displays and says it “has to do a better job of showcasing its products before customers even get inside the store”.

The pilot stores are part of a previously announced £600m investment in its store portfolio, as part of Bolland’s overhaul of the retail business.

In food, M&S has revamped the store layout to communicate the “more specialist position” it wants to develop. It has added a full bakery and deli complete with a fresh pasta maker on site and more than 100 “best in class” international brands which will be exclusive to M&S.

It has also refreshed the shelving with wood effect shelf edges to look less like a supermarket and more like a specialist. New packaging will roll out across the food range later this year.

Speaking at the Kensington High Street branch, the first pilot store to open CEO Marc Bolland said: “The Kensington store is a preview of the advancement’s we’re are making in our stores. It’s a clear roadman of how we are addressing the four major issues we faced in November 2010”.

He added: “These are the first ideas, they’re not carved in store so we are trialling and learning from the pilots and will tweak and change the next iteration before rolling it out.”

Steve Sharpe M&S’s marketing director says the pilot stores go hand in hand with the new advertising campaigns starring Ryan Reynolds and Rosie Huntington-Whiteley that M&S unveiled for its Limited Collection, Autograph and Collezione fashion brands last week.

“They are a work in progress and demonstrate the other side of how the brands will look in stores,” he adds.

The other pilot stores are due to open on 13 October and following a review during the Christmas trading period, M&S expects to roll out the design to between 80 and 100 stores by the end of the financial year in March. It hopes to complete the roll out across all its UK stores by mid 2013.

Latest from Marketing Week

NOT REGISTERED? IT'S FREE, QUICK AND EASY!

Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now

THE BEST CONTENT

Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.

THE BIGGEST ISSUES

From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.

PERSONAL AND PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3711 or email subscriptions@marketingweek.com

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here