Kenmore washer from Sears has cool break-dancing-like moves

Posted on Wed Feb 24 2010

This ad from Sears, for its newly relaunched Kenmore brand, had us dancing in our seats. (Thank goodness no one was watching.) The department store is revamping its Kenmore household appliances line, and first up comes this new spot for the Kenmore Elite Multi-Motion washer. Instead of boringly explaining the machine's benefits to an interested couple, a clerk asks her dance troupe to "Hit it!" (Not the machine.) The group uses a break-dancing routine to demonstrate the machine's functions. Even the husband in the spot gets grooving. "Better than just circles," he says, then tries to be all hip like the dancers, with unimpressive results. OK, back to dancing … I mean, typing.

—Posted by Elaine Wong

How long can Sears keep up these Brett Favre retirement jokes?

Posted on Tue Feb 2 2010

Sears can't get enough of Brett Favre and the retirement jokes. In this new ad by Young & Rubicam, a Sears sales rep stands with the Minnesota Vikings quarterback in front of a Samsung flat-screen TV. He compliments Favre on an amazing season, then says he thought about retiring from Sears that very day, but decided to stay at work. Favre tells the rep that was a good choice. (No one should retire before their time!) Sears has posted a whole bunch of Favre commercials, including three new ones, over on its Web site. You're encouraged to vote for your favorite. The retirement jokes might be wearing a bit thin, but as long as Favre continues to hem and haw about next season, Sears will probably keep it up.

—Posted by Elena Malykhina

It's July, but at Sears, the Christmas shopping season has begun

Posted on Fri Jul 17 2009

Summer-santa

Christmas in July isn't just for Crazy Eddie anymore. Hoping to get a jump on all the other retailers, Sears has opened a Christmas store online and Christmas boutiques at hundreds of physical stores nationwide. The effort, which includes a Christmas Lane site that cranks out holiday tunes, may set a record for early Christmas shilling and could be a harbinger of an even earlier season than last year. Christmas ads began showing up in September magazines (which hit in August) last year. The reason? Retailers feared a dismal holiday season, and for good reason. As Stuart Elliott noted in The New York Times last September, Radio City Music Hall began advertising its Christmas show on Sept. 7. Traditionally, most retailers have waited until Nov. 1 to start decking their halls with Christmas paraphernalia.

—Posted by Todd Wasserman

Insurer set to piss off 3 million people by renaming Sears Tower

Posted on Thu Mar 12 2009

Sears_tower copy

There's always backlash when an arena, ballpark or some other well-known building gets slapped with a new corporate identity. But Chicagoans are likely to set a new bar for bitchiness now that the city's greatest landmark, the Sears Tower, is being renamed the Willis Tower in honor of a big new tenant.
  Sears commissioned the building in 1970, sold it in the 1990s but kept the naming rights. Those rights expired in 2003 but weren't sold to anyone else. Now, insurance company Willis Group Holdings is swooping in. It's preparing to consolidate five local offices (almost 500 employees) into the 110-story building, and grabbing naming rights, too. "Having our name associated with Chicago's most iconic structure underscores our commitment to this great city, and recognizes Chicago's importance as a major financial hub and international business center," Willis chairman and CEO Joseph J. Plumeri says in a release.
  What Plumeri forgets is that few people outside his business have known or cared about Willis Group Holdings. Now, everyone will hate them. Plumeri may be hoping that whatever storm erupts over the Willis name will die down eventually. To help his cause, he should probably also rethink the idea of painting the building silver.

—Posted by Tim Nudd

Sears to sell tasty lawnmower value meals at its drive-throughs

Posted on Fri Jan 16 2009

Drivethru

Sears is about to try out a concept more traditionally associated with double cheeseburgers and medication prescriptions: drive-through pick-up.
  The retailer is launching MyGopher, a new site that will allow shoppers to make their purchases online, which they can then pick up at a drive-thru warehouse store. The concept will be tested this summer in Joliet, Ill. (the former home of Joliet Jake and Adrianne Curry) at the site of a soon-to-be-shuttered Kmart store.
  By lowering the overhead costs associated with running mall anchor stores, Sears is hoping this is a model that could help it weather the current economic climate.

—Posted by Chris Thilk


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