REAL ESTATE

Updates planned for Northridge Fashion Center

BY Katherine Boccaccio

Northridge, Calif. — Chicago-based General Growth Properties said Monday it will update its Northridge Fashion Center property, in Northridge, Calif., by modernizing and enhancing both the interior and exterior of the shopping center.

Renovations to the property launch in February and include new flooring, new interior and exterior dining areas, revamped color palette and lighting, a re-invented Macy’s Court with a Cyberlounge, a new Children’s Play Area, and updated entrance façade, way-finding signage and lighting.

Northridge Fashion Center is anchored by Macy’s, Macy’s Men’s & Home Furnishings, J.C. Penney and Sears. Other tenants include H&M, Apple, Disney Store, Coach, and Love Culture.

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Cultivating an image on not so distant lands

BY CSA STAFF

Target is looking to get ahead of the curve in major media markets by placing communications executives in such places as Dallas, Los Angeles, New York and Toronto in addition to those at the Minneapolis home office, Ad Age reported on Monday.

Target tends to receive kinder press treatment than its larger rival Walmart, but the ill wind of negative media sentiment could eventually blow Target’s way more forcefully. So being more proactive with media professionals in the field is a good idea as it will be better able to establish new relationships with news outlets and deepen existing relationships. The strategy worked pretty well at Walmart, which undertook a similar action more than five years ago to counteract a withering attack on its reputation from critics. To learn more and see what Ad Age had to say about the new approach at Target, click here.

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@WAGSocialCare: Walgreens creates dedicated site for Twitter customers

BY CSA STAFF

DEERFIELD, Ill. — Walgreens on Friday launched @WAGSocialCare, a Twitter customer hotline that takes on complaints and praise from Walgreens customers via the social media site. The site is being followed only by 20 "tweeters" through Monday, as compared with the more-than 90,000 who follow Walgreens’ corporate Twitter account.

However, there already is a celebrity sighting — the first celebrity tweet to be retweeted on the new @WAGSocialCare came from Tabatha Coffey, host of Bravo’s "Tabatha Takes Over," who tweeted: "@Walgreens I’m [in] love with your ‘Look Boutique’ just went to my first one and sales girls were lovely."

Walgreens’ activity in the social media space so far in 2012 has been substantial. For example, the company’s exclusive partnership with LocalResponse went viral with a recently published Ad Age report. LocalResponse manages a new mobile advertising tool that delivers branded messaging to those consumers who just "checked in" at one of its locations. According to the Ad Age report, Walgreens in January pushed out more than 5,000 messages via Twitter with a Halls cough drops call to action: "Check out Halls’ new cough drops in the cold aisle." Timely, given that January traditionally is a time when incidence of cold and flu begin picking up.

In addition, Walgreens successfully generated some back-and-forth between its patients and Express Scripts over Walgreens’ exit from Express Scripts’ pharmacy network. According to Walgreens officials, the amount of Walgreens pharmacy patients who chimed in on that tweet numbered in the tens of thousands, with a positive-to-negative ratio (regarding their experience at Walgreens) of 12-to-1. The move drew the social media ire of Express Scripts, which countered Walgreens’ sponsorship of #ILoveWalgreens with a series of six "facts" tweets.

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