New CMO at Target

New CMO at Target

Steve’s breakdown: The new guy is an ex-agency executive so expect changes in the advertising department. I’m not ready to predict this account will go into review but I’d keep an eye on it if you’re interested.

MINNEAPOLIS, MN: Target Corp. said Monday that it hired advertising executive Jeffrey J. Jones as its new head of marketing, filling that key position roughly six months after the discount chain’s marketing chief was hired away by a rival.

Jones, 44, was previously president of the Durham, N.C.-based advertising agency McKinney. Before that, he held several leadership positions at clothing retailer Gap Inc., including chief marketing officer. At Gap, Jones led marketing strategy, retail store design, and the company’s communications with consumers.

In early October, department store operator J.C. Penney Company Inc. hired Michael Francis, Target’s previous executive vice president and chief marketing officer. J.C. Penney said it hired Francis to “re-imagine the department store experience” in Penney’s more than 1,100 stores.

Jones will now take the helm of marketing at Target’s 1,765 stores. The company said it picked him after a “comprehensive search” that included both internal and external candidates.

Jones was chosen in part because of his experience working across several industries, Target said.

Jones worked at Coca-Cola Co. and the high-tech consultancy MarchFirst Inc., which declared bankruptcy in 2001. He also worked for the Leo Burnett Worldwide advertising firm and LB Works, a Chicago-based ad agency associated with Leo Burnett.

Target sells a wide array of products, from groceries to iPads to clothing.

“Marketing is a key differentiator for Target and I am confident that under Jeff’s stewardship, we will continue to build on our long history of surprising and delighting our guests,” Target CEO Gregg Steinhafel said in a statement.

Shares of Target fell 19 cents, or less than 1 percent, to $58.08 in morning trading.


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