Best Buy, Office Depot top retail back-to-school brands

Mountain View, Calif. -- Best Buy was the most effective retail brand overall during the 2013 back-to-school advertising season for the second year in a row with an average Ace Score of 561, performing 15% higher than its retail peers, according to TV and video advertising data from Ace Metrix.

Office Depot was the second most effective back-to-school retail advertiser with an average Ace Score of 540.

Meanwhile, Ace Metrix reports Kmart ads aimed at a young, hip audience were highly polarizing and offended and confused many viewers. J.C. Penney debuted the most new creative this season but also experienced the largest decline in average Ace Score (484), dropping 14% from 2012. Target had the second most significant year-over-year decline of 12%. Retail ads accounted for 82% of total back-to-school ads

“This was a lackluster year for back to school, but technology and gadgets dominate this season with brands like Best Buy, Office Depot, and H.H.Gregg topping the list over traditional apparel and department store ads,” said Peter Daboll, CEO of Ace Metrix. “Best Buy returns this year as the most effective brand based not only on their compelling product-featured ads but engaging viewers with outstanding visuals and compelling stories of customized shopping experiences.”

In terms of most effective single ads, Best Buy had back-to-school ads with the highest and third-highest Ace scores, while J.C. Penney had the number two ad. Office Depot tied with Best Buy for number three and also had ads ranked sixth and seventh, Kohl’s had ads ranked fifth, eighth and ninth, and a Target ad took the 10th spot.

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