For at least the past nine months, corporate had to have had a team working on the Nate at Target project. And they did a wonderful job flashing the hype across social media channels since Target announced in May Nate's product arrival in stores for October 21. But there was a tremendous break down when it came to the store execution. It's not winter, so I know no blizzards held back the timeliness of the deliveries. The stores HAD TO have had a "target" date for when the shipments should have arrived - even if only arriving last week. Target also must have shipped the cartons with a bright colored label, to help stock personnel differentiated this product for store stock, plus they must have also had a staging are to house the assortment prior to the floor set. And because it's so imperative to have the advertised product on hand, I know Target wouldn't be merchandising it on there floor until the morning of the launch, or set it the night before.
What has me baffled is I find it hard to believe, no store managers, no district or regional personnel contacted the stores to ensure they had received the merchandise? It doesn't take a phone call or a store visit to ensure these days: The simple solution to this lack of follow-thru is: Take a picture of the set, and even before that point - communicate what is missing so there is reaction time. Back it up a step further: Have a checklist and communicate to associates new products and their location for set in the store.
Comment on Facebook from Frisco, Texas:
(and yes - it was in all caps, so this person was also quite peeved too!)
Grant Noroyan: "SOMEONE BETTER GET THERE ACT TOGETHER......I SAW A POST EARLIER THAT THERE WAS NO NATE BERKUS ITEMS IN THE STORE WHEN THEY WENT.....SO I WENT TO THE STORE MYSELF IN FRISCO TEXAS AND THEY HAD NOTHING REGARDING THE COLLECTION!!! MY UNDERSTANDING IS THAT THE ITEMS WERE IN ALL STORES ON OCTOBER 21st ......AND THERE WAS NOTHING WHEN I WENT........SOME PEOPLE NEED TO GET THERE ACT TOGETHER .......AND YOU NEED TO CHECK INTO THIS TO SEE WHY IT ISN'T OUT YET!!!"
Comment on Facebook from Wisconsin:
Cher Falkner: "My local Target only had one end cap that they were just putting out this afternoon. Department manager said there was a distribution problem and product is coming in late."
Comment on Facebook from Pennsylvania:
(and TOTALLY agree! Nate DESERVES better!)
Thom Mullins: "Really disappointed with Target's rollout of the Nate Berkus line. Three stores I visited in eastern Pennsylvania and they only had a few sets of sheets, and a shower curtain. When. I asked at one store, they said they haven't put it out yet. At another store they said it was hung up in customs and the third just had blank stares. No signage, no big splash. Nate deserves better."
Another Facebook comment from California:
Kimberly Angst: "I went to three Targets yesterday and not one had your line . I emailed Target and asked for call from the District Manager in Monterrey CA."
My ONE response from Target, this morning on Twitter
(after commenting on Facebook & Twitter last night and this morning)
"Sorry the store team members didn’t know about our Nate Berkus Collection. Order online at: http://tgt.bz/6011pEFW . - Julie" -- I responded But that isn't the point to go "shop on line" when it was advertised to be available IN STORES - and nothing at all was.
Someone in merchandise execution & communications at Target corporate headquarters needs to be held accountable for this HUGE miss of the bulls eye at Target. It wasn't only my Target (in the 85295 area of Phoenix), but on Facebook and Twitter, a few others had shared their disappointment of no Nate merchandise in their local Target stores either. I didn't expect the entire line - but I did "expect more" of the associates product knowledge and a taste of the product to see. Ironically, Nate's book is called "The Things That Matter", but apparently at Target, none of those things are: follow-thru, execution, timeliness or standing by what they advertise. What does come across as mattering at Target is name dropping: from Michael Graves to Liberty of London to Missoni to Patch NYC, and now to Nate Berkus. It seems as if Target already passed up the hype of Nate's line, and is off to hype-up Holiday with Neiman's and the launch of Taylor Swift's CD: Red... which is, if I were Nate, what I'd be seeing right now. Nate deserves better - maybe Nate should consider shifting his product from Target line to JCPenney.
From Nate interview at the New York Times - about product at Target:
"The line will have a long life. I’ll be able to constantly refresh it. I don’t want to totally overhaul every season. The whole is focused on accessories and objects. I see every horizontal surface as an opportunity. A lot is drawn from pieces in my home that I’ve been collecting over the last 25 years."
This wasn't the post I intended to be writing about for Nate's product launch at Target. I very much relate to and enjoy the Nate Berkus style. I also have been a customer (guest) at Target for almost 20 years now, which is why I am so incredibly disappointed.
From the store (above)
to my home (below)
Last week, on the day of Nate's book launch, I was able to just easily walk in to Barnes & Nobel, ask an associate for the book, and she not only knew what I was talking about, but with a smile on her face, she brought me to the table the book was merchandised on. THAT is merchandise execution and customer service done RIGHT! What about you? Did your local Target have the new Nate line set? Or was Target already sold out when you went in the store? which that too is another issue at Target.
Sorry for the rant - I think they only other time I went off on poor store execution was I post I wrote about a closing Pottery Barn store in Miami (see Shop Tour: Pottery Barn Shocker). I'm sure the Miami Target stores and the stores up in New York or Chicago areas back on the east coast had no issues for launch or set. But even-though I'm (now) located in the Phoenix area of Arizona, it is one of the Top 5 Cities in the US, so why drop the ball here? Hubs texted me and said no Nate at Target in Casa Grande either - They told him, "Maybe tomorrow." What kind of a launch is that?
Thanks for stopping by...
Have a great week!