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Gap Setting Out to Revitalize its Image with New Marketing

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In the 1990’s, Gap had some very effective and entertaining advertising, but it hasn’t had any extremely successful marketing since.  It has been trying to market to younger people and ex-customers unsuccessfully for the last decade.  The clincher came when Gap announced on Thursday, April 7 that sales for March fell 9 percent compared to March of last year in its stores that have been open at least a year, according to a recent article from the New York Times.  This is a very important measure which is known as same-store sales.  In comparison, several other retailers have had excellent March results that exceeded analyst’s estimates.

According to the Kantar Media unit of WPP, Gap Inc. spent $70.5 million in advertising for Gap in 2010.  Even with this, Gap revenue was $5.8 billion, which was higher than the $5.6 billion in 2009, but lagged behind its 2008’s $5.9 billion and 2007’s $6.2 billion revenue.

In order to step up their efforts and attract new and previous customers, Gap has recently changed the ad agency that it uses, hired a new president for its operations in North America, moved marketing and design and other creative tasks from San Francisco to New York, and hiring its first chief global marketing officer.

For its new ad agency, Gap chose Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide, which is based in New York.  Seth Farbman was chosen as its first global marketing officer.  Farbman was previously a worldwide managing director at Ogilvy.  Farbman has big plans for Gap, and he feels that Gap needs to “set a clear point of view for the brand”, and that they need act fast.

Gap Setting Out to Revitalize its Image with New Marketing by
Authored by: Harrison Barnes