Bhs owner Philip Green provides marketers with a salutary lesson. It is not one of success leading to bonuses of &£180m, rather that marketing is as much about service and quality of product as communication and brand promise.
In an age when the marketing community is obsessed with being able to cut through communications clutter to touch consumers more effectively, Green has turned around the fortunes of Bhs in two years, simply by concentrating on delivering a better shopping experience. There have been no high-profile media campaigns, CRM executions or days on end spent in brainstorming meetings. He has invested in staff and product and let his stores do the talking. The results speak for themselves.
Winston Fletcher believes that marketing is about diagnosing what customers want, then giving them exactly what they want, and then letting them know it is available (MW May 16). The problem is that most marketers focus almost exclusively on the latter. Every effort goes into creating brand promise and little, if any, into fulfilling it.