Is upmarket gourmet gifts seller Harry & David really past its best? The company filed for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection this week after its sales slumped.
Many brand consultants have already come forward to suggest ways the ailing retailer could turn a tasty profit again, largely by dropping its ‘stuffy’ image to become more relevant to today’s consumer.
In my eyes, Harry & David is a prime example of a brand that could be completely transformed with a Cultural Movement strategic platform vs traditional marketing or a brand revamp.
For example, it’s background of orchard management and history rich in fruit selling means it’s the expert when it comes to producing fruits that are in season, when they’re at their best.
And we’re becoming a nation of grow-your-own. We want to embrace all things green, we want to achieve the satisfaction and are willing to put in hours of work no matter how haphazard the end results. We are willing to try. So tying into this is a natural fit for Harry & David, and there are any number of ways our passion for self-sustainability can be exploited for the benefit of the brand.
Cultural Movements of course aren’t about persuading people to believe something. It’s about tapping into what they already believe. Its customers are already interested in eating sustainably, healthily and supporting local business. It’s why they choose to sign up for regular deliveries of fruit hampers instead of buying from a large grocery store. So Harry & David have a unique customer base, full of like-minded people, who are ripe and ready to hear from them. And more research amongst its existing consumers would reveal a lot about what they’re into. What motivates them to buy into Harry & David and become part of that family.
So Harry & David is far from the last apple in the fruit bowl. With a little insight, strategy and willingness to really get to know their customers and listen to their passions, it could grow to become the cream of the crop again.