I admire Target’s simple grace in-store. The various executions of wall signs, hanging signs, aisle violators, and owned-brand packaging all contribute to a mood and brand that’s unmistakably Target.
Not only is Target consistently on-brand and clean across its many incarnations (some much, much cleaner than others), the store itself signifies purity, the type of place you can feel good about learning the latest trend or walking out with a $20 birthday present or $100 trash can.
I loved working on Target because I got to observe firsthand how dedicated their Minnesotan marketers were to the Target Mission. They agnonized over the perfect balance, mood, and execution of each photo, model, and facial expression.
It’s interesting how clean the logo and straightforward the concept of Target is: a central vortex, once entered, that stands for success.
How simple a symbol to repeat, and be drawn to. How many images and mood boards and nonverbal communication must happen between every individual in order to ascribe such a harmonious visual presence?
The answer is: a lot. Target workers shared images and mood boards and paid attention to the details. They visited Target stores all the time. They used Target merchandise. They lived their brand.
Target attracts brand fanatics to Minneapolis the same way that Nike pulls athletic, driven workers to their headquarters in Beaverton. The brand lives. It’s one we’ve grown up with. The psyedelic supermodel commercials were like nothing else on TV; I remember being amazed.
Who created these images? How were they done? On a computer? Where was this white and red world of beautiful multicultural people? What was the industry and jobs and faces of the people who made this be on TV?
The answer is: people who wanted to make those images made them. It was a partnership formed around a circular beacon. These opportunites to strike forth on new advertising ground, with campaigns like Target’s iconic red and white psychedelia aren’t impossible, but they are rare. They require a unique combination of personalities and opportunity, of permission and bravery on both the client side and the agency side.
When a formula works, it can create a brand standard that informs the company’s creativity and output for years in the future, much like a strong genetic strain in a species.
I believe the types of emotional work that affect people on a mass scale are created by individuals who exist in an emotional state of support. The best work comes out of informed creativity and transparent, two-way communication. In simple terms: everyone gets along.
All these things I think about while shopping Target. And I think Target is beautiful.
For you Google Reader lovers, don’t fret: Follow SuzyMae with Bloglovin