BJ’s Wholesale Club

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Tom Dougherty, CEO – Stealing Share

14 May 2020

BJ’s Wholesale hits the right tone, approach

We’re all watching brands struggle marketing during this time of quarantine. And, for the most part, they are merely doing the expected. Not BJ’s Wholesale.

In fact, the new spot from the discount bulk retailer is unlike anything on our airwaves right now.

“The key is that BJ’s Wholesale hits a specific target audience with the issues they are dealing with right now.”

The key is that BJ’s Wholesale hits a specific target audience with the issues they are dealing with right now. The truth of human behavior is that we are selfish creatures. We care about what affects us. That’s why the most effective branding aligns with the precepts of the target audience. What they believe to be true, and what’s important to them. Appeasing screaming children is the top priority for many right now, not saving the world.

Most advertising right now is of the “we care” variety. That’s not a bad thing in and of itself. But that approach demonstrates marketers struggling with how to react to the COVID-19 virus. Taking the we care or supporting essential workers approach is the expected one. Especially a month and a half after the start of the quarantine.

BJ’s Wholesale targets a specific, day-to-day issue

The truth is that most of us are simply trying to get through the day. And for parents of school-age children, each day is an endless trial of how to entertain and feed their families. And it’s constant. (I have grandchildren. I know.)

BJ's WholesaleMany parents will no doubt see themselves in the BJ’s Wholesale spot. The beginning of it is sure genius. “I’m hungry!” yells the young daughter. It grabs you. And raise your hand if you’ve heard that in the last six weeks.

Our daily lives right now are filled with grocery store trips (while, hopefully, wearing masks) and, for a lot of people, storing up. (Which explains the shortage in paper products.) The BJ Wholesale ad builds on that, while explaining that you need a large amount of items to keep everyone (that is, screaming children) happy.

There isn’t much tie-in to the BJ Wholesale brand, I admit, other than what it offers (bulk). But at least it’s different, arresting and considers what a section of the target audience goes through each day.

See more posts in the following related categories: Advertising


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