All Articles Tagged "kmart"
Almost every month we read about another major retailer who has suffered a security breach. Hackers attack customer information, including account information and sometimes social security numbers and home addresses. And it seems such breaches are not stopping any time soon. According to Forbes, more are on the way.
According to security vendor BitSight, there is a heightened level of malicious activity against the retail industry, and at the same time it seems the retailers are not as effective about battling these threats as they were in the past.
“BitSight analyzed 139 U.S. retailers (including Target, Wal-Mart, CVS, but excluding supermarkets) from November 1, 2013 through January 12, 2014 and found 1,035 distinct infections communicating out from corporate networks, a worrying 7.5 on average per company. Many of these malware strains take advantage of system vulnerabilities with the objective of enabling backdoor access to corporate as well as consumer systems,” reports Forbes.
Here are nine major companies who have had security breaches in the last year.
There’s one more annual tradition we can add to the Thanksgiving turkey feast and uncomfortable dinner conversation: the trip to the mall for “Black Friday” sales. We can now put Black Friday in quotes because the shopping is actually starting on Thanksgiving Thursday. So instead of taking a nap in order to wake up around 2:30 in the morning to be first in line with the doors open, people aren’t even going to sleep. It’s straight from pie to the mall.
There have been some vocal complaints about the early start to the holiday shopping spree. The Huffington Post recently wrote that people are “pissed” with Kmart for opening at 6am on Thanksgiving, with the site posting screenshot after screenshot of Facebook griping, most of it on behalf of the store’s employees. Graciously, some see this as an intrusion for sales associates who aren’t making nearly enough to justify being pried from family, friends, and good food.
However, a spokesperson from Kmart and Sears told MN Business that sales associates working these hours agreed to do it for extra pay.
“During the Thanksgiving and Black Friday holiday hours, stores will be staffed with seasonal associates who have volunteered to work. In addition, all eligible hourly associates are to be paid time and one-half their regular rate for all hours worked on the Company paid holiday, except where state or local laws require a higher rate,” an email statement reads.
Walmart announced this week that it’ll be open 6pm ET on Thanksgiving Day, the same time Best Buy will open its doors. Toys R Us will open at 5pm, Target at 8, and a number of other retailers including Macy’s and Kohl’s will open on Thursday for the first time.
In announcing the plan to be open for 41 hours straight, the press release from Kmart and Sears pushed perks for Shop Your Way members and a new Lease-to-Own program. Indeed, it’s all of the discounts and extras that are available during Black Friday that willingly gets lots of people to the stores during the holiday. For all of the complaints, shoppers have showed up on their own accord in the middle of the night to buy holiday goodies.
But according to The New York Times, the money train might be sputtering this year. First, there are six fewer days to shop this holiday season. And though there are more hours to shop, that doesn’t necessarily mean people have more cash to spend. In fact, last year sales on Black Friday fell 1.8 percent, but that could be because people had already started shopping the day prior. Holiday sales, overall, are only supposed to go up 3.9 percent this year, reports The Wall Street Journal (figures provided by the National Retail Federation).
The only thing that’s going to stop retailers from starting Black Friday earlier and earlier in the week are lower sales number. Complaining and signing online petitions add up to nothing when people turn up at all sorts of hours during Thanksgiving to spend their money. If there are some people who want to shop on Turkey Day, certainly that’s their prerogative. For everyone else, they just need to put their money where their mouth is. Or rather, enjoy another serving of dessert, another glass of wine, or one more movie on the TV and let the madness happen at the mall.
It’s Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas: Did Kmart Go Too Far By Airing A Holiday Ad In September?
I was watching TV recently and suddenly heard the familiar tinkle of the “Nutcracker Ballet.” Then a gingerbread man appeared. He was a lightly-toasted golden brown with white frosting for buttons. I stared at the commercial—fixated, but perplexed. Something was wrong with this picture.
There was no Christmas tree in my living room. There were no homes decorated in beautiful Christmas light displays. The air lacked the bitter cold that defined a New York winter holiday season. It was only September—nearly three months before Christmas and Kmart already launched an ad.
“Don’t let the holidays sneak up on you,” the Kmart commercial warned. “Shop early with Kmart’s free layaway! ….Kmart. Get in; Get more Christmas!”
Kmart’s Christmas-in-September marketing scheme is the earliest holiday commercial in history; stores typically wait until October to air Christmas ads. Alarmed by the premature commercial, many not-so-pleased consumers vented their frustrations on Kmart’s Facebook page. “What happened to Halloween and thanksgiving? Stop with the Christmas commercials ALREADY!!” one commenter said.
Other consumers supported Kmart’s untimely gingerbread man commercial:
“1st of all… halloween isn’t a holiday. If so my job owes me 17 yrs worth of off days & pay. 2nd of all…… It’s never too early to start your shopping or preparation for Christmas, so Kmart, you guys are on point with your reminding us that it will be here b4 we know it and then we’ll be scrambling around like crazy people!”Christinia Jennings said.
One of our Facebook commenters said much the same thing this morning, noting that items like hats and scarves can be had for as little as 50 cents in the off season.
While the holidays bring warm thoughts of hot chocolate, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer and Home Alone, Christmas also means scraping for change as we scramble through a labyrinth of cluttered aisles to purchase gifts for family members, friends, and “Secret Santas.” Christmas has morphed into a season of “stuff”—a money-grubbing holiday that leaves us too penniless to celebrate New Year’s Eve. Those who disapprove of Kmart’s commercial are terrified of a further dilution of the “true meaning” of Christmas. Consumers who loved the ad, on the other hand, see Kmart’s layaway commercial as a way to combat the financial stresses the holidays bring.
But there is a consensus between both sides: It’s a business. Kmart is purposely extending the Christmas season. But some customers—such as the unemployed—would seemingly benefit from the retailer’s Christmas-in-September layaway marketing ploy. Paying slowly over time rather than spending a large chunk of money at once during the few weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve isn’t an option for some people.
“Yes, I’m one of those moms that spends a lot less on winter coats, sweaters, and other winter gear by shopping early,” said one blogger, a mother of four, who starts her holiday shopping in August. “I avoid a lot of stress by starting my Christmas shopping early, and I know my bank account thanks me. Let’s face it spending $500 – $1000 on Christmas gifts is often hard to do at once, but spaced over several months it can be accomplished comfortably.”
Many people think the Kmart jumped the gun. According to a Variety poll that asked whether it’s too soon, 62 percent said “Yes! It’s only September!” and 38 percent didn’t mind at all. Last year, ABC News says Target aired the earliest ad on October 7 . But it looks like Kmart took things a little too far. Even if the ads aren’t running early, it’s clear that people have Christmas on their minds as soon as the leaves turn.
We took a quick look around and can’t find the Kmart ad anywhere, so it looks like the retailer took it down. But they made their point.
People are bad enough with social media that we now have to worry about companies putting their virtual foot in their mouth? What ever happened to thinking before you speak — or in this case tweet?
Forget Amanda Bynes and other high profile people that have been completely crazy on Twitter. Sometimes, it’s the corporations that don’t know when to hush up or think about their comments. Here are 10 company Twitter fails and disasters that should have gone through PR first (if it could’ve helped).
Ready or not, the Nicki Minaj Collection is coming to a Kmart near you this fall, and from the new designs she showed off via Instagram yesterday and a few weeks ago, it’s a bodycon, skintight, and colorful party waiting to happen. To describe the looks, Minaj says her dresses hug you in all the right places, while she brings back what looks to be velour pants with a two-piece track suit that she says is a “studio outfit.” I guess you could say there’s something for everybody. There’s a club outfit with some spots that are supposed to be similar to a galaxy print. There’s the bodycon dress with the eclectic print all over the front. And what would would a neckline be without cut-outs and studs? All the looks definitely come off like something Minaj would be wear out, but is it something you would actually spend your money on? If the price is right (and considering she’s making the line through a collabo with Kmart it probably will be), I’m sure there’s at least one thing we can all say is cute. Like…er, well, I’ll let you guys handle that.
Check out the rest of the looks she posted on her Instagram for yourself and let us know what you think.
Update: Ballantine Books, an imprint at Random House, has dropped the book it had planned to release for Paula Deen in October. The publisher has dropped plans to sell Paula Deen’s New Testament: 250 Favorite Recipes, All Lightened Up, even though it’s been number one on the Amazon bestseller list.
It’s starting to get a little redundant, but Paula Deen has lost a few more business partnerships in the wake of this disastrous racism controversy. Now drugstore chain Walgreen’s, Sears, and Kmart (which is owned by Sears) have cut ties with the chef.
“Our members’ needs will be given first priority as we work to continue to provide quality cookware in our stores and online,” said Sears Holdings in a statement sent to The Huffington Post. The company will be “phasing out” the sale of her products.
Walgreen’s, which also owns the regional chain of retailers Duane Reade and Drugstore.com, said it would also be slowly doing away with her products.
This adds to a list of companies that have in some way, shape, or form cut ties with Deen. The list includes The Food Network, Smithfield Foods, Novo Nordisk, and Home Depot. On the positive side, her cookbook is doing well in pre-sales on Amazon and her Paula Deen-themed cruise is selling spots at a good clip.
And Deen now has a new defender. Former President Jimmy Carter told CNN that Deen should be forgive because she was honest.
“I think she has been punished, perhaps overly severely, for her honesty in admitting it and for the use of the word in the distant past. She’s apologized profusely,” he said. Moreover, he pointed out that Deen’s programs in Savannah, GA have helped “almost exclusively oppressed and poverty stricken black people.”
Would You Wear This? Nicki Minaj Shows Off A Few Interesting Looks From Her Upcoming Clothing Line With Kmart
If you didn’t get the memo, we’re living in an age when famous folks wear more than one hat, and do more than just one thing. These days, you can’t just be an actor, you have to be a singer. And nowadays, if you’re a musician, you’re also dabbling in fashion as well. Such is the case with rapper/former American Idol judge Nicki Minaj.
News broke at the beginning of the year that Minaj was going to be teaming up with Kmart to design pieces that reflect her personality and personal style. When speaking on her hopes for her collaboration with Kmart, Minaj said she was interested in providing well-made but affordable pieces that even she would wear:
“My biggest goal was to make a line that was going to be affordable to my fans and also rich enough in quality that they’ll feel like they’re wearing exactly what I’m wearing.”
Minaj has already come a long way in the design process, and has been showing off a few looks from the line to her “Barbz” on Twitter over the past month. Many of the pieces are covered in some pretty gaudy prints, and when they’re not, they’re curve accentuating dresses that will probably do well with her female fans. To be honest, some of the pieces are a little too loud for my taste and at times come off looking very similar to the trends of right now (peplum and Herve Leger-type body-con dresses), but how often does a sista get a chance to collaborate and make clothes with Kmart? So kudos to her. Check out a few pieces here and on the next page and let us know what you think of Nicki’s line of clothing so far.
Have you reached your daily limit of Nicki Minaj? Well, if you can swallow a bit more, here’s news on the American Idol judge, who seems to be in overdrive on projects lately. Minaj has just announced she will launch a new clothing line with Kmart this year.
The hip hop/pop star, who already has a new CD, new perfume, new reality show and the AI gig, has teamed up with Sears Holdings, the owner of Kmart, and its affiliate website ShopYourWay.com, for her new line. She joins Maroon 5 lead singer and former The Voice judge Adam Levine, who inked a Kmart clothing deal as well.
Nicki’s line will include a variety of lifestyle products — from apparel to accessories. She said in a press statement (via Complex), “I am so excited to work with this iconic, mass retailer and to bring affordable fashion to my beautiful barbz all across the US.”
Look for the line by the end of the year. No word on how much of the designing will be done by Minaj, who, by the way, has been making nice with her AI rival Mariah Carey during the 2013 Winter TCA tour the other day. It never stops.
Hmm. The only thing left for Minaj to put out now is a line of wigs. I hope I haven’t given her any ideas.
We don’t think Chuck D would ever have imagined that his politically conscious music would make its way into Kmart ads but there it is, in plain sight; the Public Enemy tune “Harder Than You Think” accompanying Kmart’s new campaign entitled “Money Can’t Buy Style.” The marketing approach is a far cry from the store’s usual advertising tactics and this campaign apparently uses real people to convey emphasis on personal style and individualism.
The choice of Public Enemy to accompany the campaigns is a bold one, since the rap group, which is fronted by Chuck D and Flavor Flav, is better known for its controversial and black-empowerment themes which they popularized in the late 80s and 90s. At the same time, a bold move is just what Kmart needed to bring attention to its potential as a source of style. It certainly caught our attention.
Kmart hasn’t had as much success as its competitor Target or even Kohl’s in appealing to stylistas, this new campaigns shows that it is more serious about branding itself as a fashion destination.
What do you think? Is this a good look for Kmart?