This post raises many excellent points regarding the marketing issues’ challenges. First, I would like to address the advertising of luxury products. Kotler and Keller (2016) highlight the importance of targeted branding and a selective approach to the luxury products’ industry image. However, labeling Macy’s as a high-end, luxurious brand may be a stretch. The significant challenge for Macy’s was the fact that they “often don’t have the best prices, the best merchandise or the best experiences” (“Can Macy’s Save Itself?” n.d.). Additionally, the recovering strategy that Macy’s bets on is discounts, which is not a very common strategy for a luxury brand. Your interpretation of the direction that Macy’s should take with delivering “great merchandise and the best in-store experience” is that it must retain its premium image (“Can Macy’s Save Itself?” n.d.). I would argue that Macy’s never had such an image in the first place, and thus, retaining customer loyalty, which Kotler and Keller (2016) stress is vital for luxury brands, might be difficult. Hence, Macy’s channel and brand images consistency do not and should not hinge on the ‘luxury’ aspect.
Furthermore, the issue of competition arises for Macy’s, which has been made known to struggle with its physical locations rather than online retail. You state that “[b]rick-and-mortar establishments have a significant advantage over online retailers: location” since it allows for quicker purchases. Indeed, as noted in “E-Commerce and Consumers” (n.d.), a business may not achieve the same speeds as large companies unless they have “forward-deployed inventory.” While Macy’s has numerous stores across the country, it may lack the power to compete with giants like Amazon. The latter can perform the same operations faster and at a lesser cost. As Sutherland (2009) notes, appropriate expertise allows identifying the segment that requires altering rather than tediously trying to rework the entire strategy. Hence, the method Macy’s should pursue to survive the post-pandemic world is to optimize some aspects of its product delivery rather than drastically reworking the entire system. You mention the hybrid approach that Target took on during the pandemic: perhaps, Macy’s should continue with a similar process but rethink the value of all of their physical locations.
Can Macy’s Save Itself? (n.d.). Knowledge at Wharton. Web.
E-commerce and Consumers: Can Retailers Meet Rising Demands? (n.d.). Knowledge at Wharton. Web.
Kotler, P., & Keller, K. L. (2016). Marketing management (15th ed.). Pearson Education, Inc.
Sutherland, R. (2009). Life lessons from an ad man [Video]. TEDGlobal. Web.