The Cincinatti Inquirer ‘s John Eckberg reports that today Federated Department Store Inc. will officially become Macy’s, even changing the stock ticker label to an M (for mundane?). While I’m not going to comment on the sadness that still haunts the former Marshall Fields stores on the streets of Chicago, I will say that my guess is that the Midwest has had enough homogenization for awhile and will likely be taking its business elsewhere.– Joanne Molina for Second City Style
The corporate name Federated Department Stores Inc. heads for
retailing history today as the Cincinnati-based department store giant
officially becomes Macy’s Inc. and the "FD" stock symbol evaporates.
In its place is that clever and cute little ticker symbol "M."
question is whether those changes – a new name, a new ticker – will
reverse a couple of nagging trends: flubbed 2007 month-to-month sales
guidance and continued resistance to the post-acquisition conversion of
Marshall Field’s stores to the Macy’s nameplate in major markets.
Loyal Macy’s shopper Karen Williamson, 49, of California, Ky.,
didn’t think the corporate branding changes would have much impact. She
was headed into the Macy’s at Anderson Towne Center on Thursday during
her lunch break.
"I call it Macy’s anyhow, though I have friends
who still call it Lazarus," she said, referring to the former name in
Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky "I’m not going to shop here
any more than I already do" just because of the name change.
One local branding expert is also skeptical that a corporate name change will alter shopping patterns.
not," said Rodger Roeser, president of Eisen Management Group, a
Burlington-based brand communications firm. "No amount of marketing,
advertising or public relations – none of that stuff – will make a lick
of difference until there is an emotional connection – until products
offered are better, until the experience is better."
organizations can’t generate new marketing initiatives, ads or logos
and expect those efforts to resonate with shoppers, Roeser said.
need to look at the competition, market trends and honing in on the
brand experience," Roeser said. "That’s money that’s much more well
Customers used to shopping at the old May stores,
including Marshall Field’s in Minneapolis and Chicago and Filene’s in
Boston, haven’t taken to the Macy’s switch as quickly as anticipated.
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