Target reveals its holiday strategy

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Broadway-style musical at the heart of marketing effort

Target reveals its holiday strategy

NEW YORK — Target Corp. on Tuesday unveiled its 2016 holiday strategy, which includes new merchandise and promotions, and a marketing campaign centered around a Broadway-style production called “The Toycracker.”

“Target is at our very best during the holidays, and we’re building on last year’s winning formula to make the 2016 holiday season even better,” said Target CEO and chairman Brian Cornell. “We’re elevating and expanding the offers that helped guests save time and money to make the most of their holidays. We’ll also inspire gift-giving, entertaining and decorating with new products and experiences online and in our stores. Most importantly, guests will find truly exceptional value through broad and simple offers timed to maximize savings on the most-shopped merchandise at each point in the season.”

This year the retailer is introducing Wondershop, a store-within-a-store department (both in stores and online) with more than 2,000 new seasonal items, including tree-trimming products and other seasonal decor. Also new this year is the Target Wonderlist — an online gift guide that offers suggestions based on the personality type and interests of the intended recipients, with 400 gift ideas available in all.

Target says its holiday merchandise offering will also include:

  • Approximately 1,000 new pieces from Target’s newly introduced line for kids, Cat & Jack, each under $30.
  • More than 1,800 new or exclusive toys (about 15% more than in 2015).
  • Thousands of Star Wars products, including more than 100 new exclusive options to gift and collect; more than 50 Trolls exclusives; two new Disney Princesses, Elena and Moana; expanded eye, hair and skin tone combinations within the Our Generation doll collection; and 50 exclusive board games, including pop culture hits such as Oregon Trail.
  • Newly released virtual reality products,including PlayStation VR and VR One Plus, and connected home products including Google Home.
  • An exclusive 10-disc box set from Garth Brooks, which includes the artist’s new album and features the 25th anniversary edition of “Friends in Low Places.” The box set is available for preorder now for $29.99 at and will be available at Target on November 11, which is two weeks before the artist’s new album will beavailable at other retailers.

Target has also announced a wide variety of seasonal promotions. Beginning in mid-November, for example, guests will save $10 off on a $50 purchase in a different product category each week, including Grocery, Home, Apparel and Accessories, Trim and Toys. In December, the promotion will expand to offer shoppers the option to save $25 on purchases of $100 or more.

Target Holiday displayThe retailer says it is bringing back popular promotions from 2015, including 10 Days of Deals, which will feature a distinct offer each day for 10 days. Target also will extend its free shipping promotion by a full week this year, waiving the shipping fee for all digital orders placed from October 25 through January 1. 2017. Target is also bringing back popular holiday deals for users of its Cartwheel digital savings app.

Supporting its efforts to woo holiday shoppers is a marketing campaign centered on an eight-minute musical that offers Target’s modern interpretation of the holiday classic “The Nutcracker.” Target’s version, “The Toy Cracker,” will air in two four-minute segments during the network broadcast premiere of Disney’s “Frozen” on Sunday, December 11 at 8 p.m. EST/7p.m. CST on ABC.

Tuesday’s announcement is the latest indication that Target is pulling out all the stops this holiday season. Last week select shoppers were invited to take a sneak peek at Target’s top picks for the 2016 holiday season at Target Studio, located in New York’s Chelsea neighborhood. The wide assortment of holiday items on display included festive home and entertaining décor, must-have styles for the whole family, the latest electronics and toys, beauty gifts, seasonal foods, clothing and more.

Target Holiday GiftsSome of the beauty products on view were PIXI by Petra Fairy Dust Favorites in Metallic Warmth, $12; PIXI by Petra Palette Rosette in Rosy Radiance, $28; PIXI by Petra Ultimate Beauty Kit-Edition III, $34, available now through January 14. Other make up offerings on display — defy & INSPIRE Gift Set in Gauntlet + Ladies Who Lunch, $9.99; defy & INSPIRE Gift Set in Bridezilla + Catwalk, $9.99; defy & INSPIRE Holiday Collection in Assorted Colors, $3 each, available November 6 through December 24; and an assortment of Burt’s Bees Holiday Gift Sets, $4.99–$14.99, available November 6 through Christmas Day.

Also highlighted were the E.L.F. 11 piece brush set, $20, and the 2-piece Contour Set, $10, available November 6 through December 24 and Hand In Hand Hand & Body Bar Soap in Assorted Scents, $6, available November 6 through Christmas Day.

Some of the grocery items showcased were Archer Farms Chocolate Peppermint Snack Bites, $3.99; Archer Farms Chocolate Peppermint Snack Mix, $8.99; Archer Farms Jingle Blend Trail Mix, $9.99; Giant Chocolate Dipped Marshmallow with Gold Dust, $1.99; Cocoa Milk Bottles, $4.99; Milk Bottle Candy Jars, $2.99; Gourmet Preserves Set, $7.99; Salts of the World Set, $7.99; Holiday Grilling Sauce, $9.99; Burger Press Gift Set, $12.99; Bloody Mary Gift Set, $9.99; 10 Cocktails of Christmas, $14.99; and for that cup of holiday cheer, Montevina Pinot Grigio and Cabernet Sauvignon, $9.99; Josh Sellers Rose, $11.99; Outlier Pinot Noir, $12.99; All grocery items are available November 6 through December 26;

The holiday line also includes a wide selection of adult apparel, such as women’s dresses, skirts, blouses and sweaters as well as men’s sweaters, vests and shirts from Mossimo Supply Co. and Merona.

Available accessories showcased were gift bags, boots and socks from Merona and women’s pendant, wrap and choker necklaces and a wide selection of skinny scarves.

The Target holiday assortments also contain numerous gifts for baby and pets as well as a range of kids’ apparel as well as loads of toys including Star Wars and Disney characters.






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