Merry Deals Offered Earlier Than Ever

Retailers are taking full advantage of the holiday shopping season, having rolled out ads and promotions as early as Halloween this year. Black Friday marketers, for instance, have extended the shopping window from two to three days. And when it comes to holiday retailers with the highest value scores, Target, Old Navy and Amazon lead the pack for women with children under 18, per research firm YouGov.

The Brandweek BrandIndex Report by YouGov is a weekly consumer perception report that analyzes the most talked about brands based on buzz: The scores are based on weighing positive and negative perceptions of a brand. A +100 score is positive, a -100 score is negative, and a rating of zero means that the score is neutral. This week’s report also measures brand value and quality.

YouGov interviews 5,000 people each weekday from a representative U.S. population sample. Respondents are drawn from an online panel of 1.5 million individuals.

The report spotlights:

•    Holiday retailers
•    Dell
•    Jim Beam

YouGov Lists Retailers With Best Value Perception
Holiday marketing is in full swing. Wal-Mart has already fired its first salvo, offering free holiday shipping for all online purchases through Dec. 20. The move prompted Macy’s, Target, and Toys”R”Us to announce similar deals.

For this list, YouGov BrandIndex examined value scores for women with children under 18—traditionally the primary purchasers of holiday gifts.

With Black Friday merely one week away, Old Navy and Target are in a virtual tie for best value perception, with Amazon not far behind. Rivals Kohl’s and J.C. Penney are neck and neck, while auction kingpin eBay makes a strong showing with a score of 36, followed by Wal-Mart and Sears. Rounding out the top 10 is electronics giant Best Buy.

With the ad campaigns coming thick and fast, in the past week, Sears made the biggest leap in value with 13 points, followed by Toys”R”Us with a 12-point increase.

Dell Powers Up Global Rebranding
After losing market share to competitors and being the subject of negative online feedback regarding its customer service, Dell launched a global rebranding campaign that carries the tag: “You Can Tell It’s A Dell.”

The computer giant hired big guns for the multimillion-dollar effort: WPP Group agencies Wunderman, Schematic and Young & Rubicam, as well as outside agency Mother. Components include direct mail, e-mail marketing and social media, as well as TV, print and display advertising.

Dell’s index score—which measures overall brand health—has been gradually rising in the U.S., Germany and U.K. for adults over 18. The most pronounced jump has been in the U.S., where the score has jumped from 48.9 to 55.6 in three weeks. The campaign strengthened the U.K.’s index score, which leads the three countries, followed by Germany, where Dell’s index score has fallen by a few points but has recently been trending upward.

Jim Beam’s Quality Score Is On Fire

Making its move in the competitive spirits category—where Jack Daniels has long been a brand standout—Jim Beam launched an online campaign on Oct. 15, centered on its eight-year aging process. Earlier this year, the bourbon maker unveiled the “Eight Years Changes Everything” slogan for its Black Label line.

Jim Beam created a Facebook game with an accompanying Web site,, which asks consumers to throw their regrets in a virtual bonfire. Site visitors can also upload images of those items they’d like to discard and earn badges or a grand prize of $8,000.

The campaign’s debut coincides with Jim Beam’s quality score improving much faster than the spirits sector average. Its score peaked at 77 on Nov. 8, just a tad behind Jack Daniels. Since then, both brands have moved down gradually, but Jim Beam’s quality score remains elevated.