Jacques Vert in marketing push to prove fashion ‘expertise’

Jacques Vert Group is hoping to shift perceptions of the company from a ‘tired department store brand’ to an ‘elegant British brand’ with a marketing push aimed at proving its fashion ‘expertise’ and getting people to give the brand another go.

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Jacques Vert’s new campaign All Dressed Up

Speaking to Marketing Week, marketing director Mark Aldridge says Jacques Vert is planning to double its investment in marketing campaigns this year, as well as make a “significant” investment in its website and launch a new loyalty scheme. It will start that later this month with the launch of its “All Dressed Up” campaign, which will go live on 31 March and run for 11 weeks.

“There are a lot of people who might think Jacques Vert is a tired department store brand. We want people to come and give us another look. We are working very hard to delight our guests in however they want to shop with us,” he says.

The womenswear concession retailer has more than 1,850 outlets in the UK, Europe and Canada. It runs nine brands, including its namesake Jacques Vert, Minuet and Precis, which it sells both in its own stores and in department stores such as Debenhams, House of Fraser and John Lewis.

It was formed by the merger of Jacques Vert and Irisa Group in 2012 by their owner, Sun European Partners in 2012. Aldridge joined in early 2013 in the newly-created group marketing director role and has since built up his marketing team from 7 people to 23 across digital, communications and CRM.

Last October, the Group launched what at the time was its biggest-ever marketing campaign called the “Mum & Me Coatwalk”. Aldridge claims the activation helped to boost its coat sales by 10 per cent year on year despite milder winter weather and meant it had less stock to clear through discounting.

With All Dressed Up, Jacques Vert is going bigger, launching its first campaign that will run across all its markets. It includes celebrity support, media partners, in-store point of sale and digital activation including a new website landing page.

It will focus on helping its customers, typically women aged over 45, put together outfits for occasions such as weddings both in store and online via a deal with recommendations service Dressipi.

It will judge the success of the new campaign by increases in footfall. The print campaign includes offers for 15 per cent off, competitions and in-store events aimed at improving the shopping experience and capturing shopper data.

A new loyalty scheme for use in its own stores and independent department stores will also be introduced. People who sign up to the “Rewards” scheme will be able to enter exclusive competitions and attend events, as well as collect stamps when they make a purchase of more than £30. Once they’ve collected 10 stamps they’ll get a discount on their next purchase.

Aldridge describes it as a “basic but clever” programme that will offer something valuable to its customer base.

For now it will be an offline scheme only, although online shoppers will be able to take the receipts in-store to get a stamp. The company hopes to integrate it into its multichannel service as it redesigns the website to position for the growth of tablet and mobile shopping.

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