Kmart Diversifies Holiday Spots

Kmart’s 10-spot holiday campaign from TBWA\Chiat\Day includes several ads aimed at minority consumers.

With about 40 percent of Kmart customers being nonwhite, the merchant has focused on diversifying its ad efforts, said client representative Dave Karraker. The ads break as Kmart’s minority-market account is expected to shift, sources said.

Two holiday television spots from the New York shop tie in with Joe Boxer and feature Vaughn Lowery, first seen doing his now familiar dance in back-to-school ads.

“The Joe Boxer commercials are an example of Kmart considering its entire shopping population, including multicultural, from the very start of the creative process,” Karraker said.

The year-end campaign also includes one commercial for Martha Stewart from the Arnell Group.

All spots end with a variation of the holiday theme, “Get more gifts. Spread more cheer.” The end frame combines Kmart’s logo with the general tagline, “The stuff of life.”

Aside from Joe Boxer, two of the general-market commercials prominently or exclusively feature Afri-can Americans. Four spots specifically target Hispanics.

“Lucky Ally” is the first time Kmart has featured a mixed-race couple in a commercial—the woman is Asian and the man Caucasian. On Christmas Day, the two pull gifts out from under the tree to give to their daughter. Ally gets so many presents she becomes covered in them and the parents lose sight of her.

GlobalHue in Southfield, Mich., and San Antonio has been Kmart’s minority-market agency since 1997, but the two parties are in the process of negotiating terms to end their relationship, sources said.

GlobalHue executives “declined comment at this time.” Steve Feuling, Kmart’s executive vice president of marketing, said the Troy, Mich.-based retailer has “not made any announcement regarding a shift in agency responsibilities” and that they “do not comment on rumors and speculation.”

Sources said Kmart may move its multicultural ad business to two undisclosed shops whose efforts will be overseen by TBWA\C\D. Billings for the store’s minority efforts are estimated at $15 million. Overall, Kmart spent about $340 million on advertising in 2001, according to CMR, and $195 million through the first eight months of 2002.