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Walgreens redefines its brand identity

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DEERFIELD, Ill. — As part of a brand repositioning, Walgreens is changing its tagline to “Trusted Since 1901” to emphasize its long heritage of serving customers.

Walgreens said Friday that the new slogan, which will replace “At the Corner of Happy and Healthy,” will make its debut in a 30-second television commercial that will air Sunday morning during some of the network morning shows. Plans call for the new “Trusted Since 1901” tagline to be featured in all of the drug chain’s TV, online and in-store advertising going forward.

The Walgreens brand positioning is an effort to highlight the retailer’s attributes from the past 116 years that are embraced by customers — care, trust and accessibility, the company said. Those elements form the focus of the campaign, which includes new advertising and marketing designed to “champion the health and well-being of every community in America,” according to the retailer.

Adam Holyk

“Over the past three years, Walgreens has redefined its commercial offering at every touch point across pharmacy, retail, health care services and consumer services, and the brand campaign signals the start of the next phase of its transformation,” Adam Holyk,  senior vice president and chief marketing officer at Walgreens, said in an interview.

“Walgreens continues to introduce programs and services addressing customers’ needs through a lens of care, trust and accessibility,” he explained. “Some of the more recent examples include high-touch care provided through Walgreens’ specialized pharmacies focused on disease states such as oncology, hepatitis and HIV; the addition of trained beauty consultants at approximately 3,000 stores; convenient access to FedEx package pickup and drop-off services at 7,500 stores; and the simplification of the product assortment in approximately 1,500 stores to make shopping easier and more.”

Beginning today, Walgreens is releasing a series of digital vignettes called “Care Stories,” which feature real employees and Walgreens customers.

“These short digital vignettes have been developed in a short documentary style and are snapshots of how Walgreens continues to provide care to its patients,” Holyk said. “They feature real teams members with real patients and customers.”

In the coming months, new in-store offerings, products and services reflecting the new brand positioning will be introduced to meet customers’ health and wellness needs, he added.

The year 1901 in the new tagline refers to when Charles R. Walgreen Sr. purchased the Chicago drug store where he had worked as a pharmacist and started the business.

“We went deep into Walgreens history to rediscover what makes Walgreens great,” Alex Gourlay, co-chief operating officer for Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. and president of Walgreens, said in a statement. “It was clear from our research that three strong characteristics define our relationship with our customers, rooted firmly in our history since 1901: care, trust and accessibility. We’ve always cared for our customers’ health and well-being, but how we’ve cared has evolved over time. As consumer behavior continues to change, we will focus on these core attributes to help define the work we do.”

The new Walgreens branding campaign is targeted at two key women’s consumer demographics — Millennials and Generation X — to position the chain as their preferred pharmacy of choice.

To connect with Millennial women, Walgreens will align with the multiple touchpoints these consumers use across digital channels, especially mobile and social. Walgreens noted that mobile consumption is the way for this generation to stay connected and will continue to reach them where they get information the most.

And to connect with Gen X females, the retailer will leverage traditional media channels, in addition to social media, since research shows that this generation uses social media platforms to find information and stay connected. Overall, Walgreens will execute across channels to reach, connect and engage consumers.

Holyk said the core of the new brand repositioning is Walgreens’ commitment to care, which is exemplified through trust, accessibility and care for all consumers. Walgreens’ new brand repositioning will amplify its commitment to care by featuring customers sharing their individual experiences and how care defines the company’s culture.

The “Trusted Since 1901” tagline reinforces that, at Walgreens, “behind every prescription and purchase is a person, and behind every person is a unique story,” Holyk said.

“Since the beginning of our company, we have dedicated ourselves to serving the people of our communities, supporting them through their ups and downs, whenever they need us,” he noted. “Straightforward, authentic, warm and reliable, we’re here to help everyone, every day. Beyond a new tagline, we hope to reflect where our brand is headed in the future with new initiatives and services that align to our brand promise: to always to be here to help you feel good.”


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