Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Martha Stewart Collection: What Happened?

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I went through the Housewares Department at Macy’s yesterday. In another life, I was Product Manager for a kitchen gadget company and worked on a few Martha Stewart Collection products for her team. Macy’s purchased a few items from us and saw first hand that the team was doing a great job building the brand.

It’s been almost 2 years since I last strolled through Macy’s housewares and was SHOCKED to see the low quality items that were under the Martha Stewart Collection. When I worked with them, they were very brand conscious and wouldn’t put her logo on something perceived as low quality. To me the Martha Stewart Collection represented a “Collection” in matching colors and quality products. The item colors were all over the place and not inline with the Martha Stewart colors that I was familiar with or at least when I was working with them. Some of the products that I saw looked like one that you’d find at a discount store and not Macy’s. Has Macy’s changed that much in 2 years?

I’m not sure if the direction of the collection has changed since I last worked with them, as it often does. To me Martha Stewart always finds a unique tool that get the job done.
Marketing people are protectors of the brand, not sure what happened with the Martha Stewart Collection. It’s not food service, but it’s food related. Another marketing blunder?

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