Things Remembered, Inc., America’s largest retailer of personalized gifts, launched Thingsremembered.com yesterday in an attempt to position itself to capture the lion’s share of online holiday gift shopping.
A division of Cole National Corporation (NYSE: CNJ), Things Remembered has more than 800 retail locations nationwide. With the addition of the Web site, the company claims that its Internet offerings will match its retail outlet inventory by 2000.
The site will initially offer several hundred gift items, ranging from clocks, picture frames and desk accessories to items specifically tailored to men and women. Easy site navigation is facilitated through search options, including gifts by occasion or price. A zip code search is offered for customers who are seeking a TR retail location.
Timing is Everything
It is no coincidence that the launch strategically coincides with the upcoming holiday shopping season. With expectations of record holiday gift-buying, Things Remembered, Inc. is backing the introduction of its site with an integrated fourth quarter marketing program.
Multi-tiered marketing will focus upon direct mail, cross promotion through Things Remembered’s mall-based retail operations and Internet advertising.
The company has enlisted the services of New York-based Grey Direct Interactive Media to firmly establish its presence with text links, banners, superstitials, tiles and keywords. Things Remembered will show up on sites targeting women and family, including iVillage, Woman’s Day and Fashion Mall.
An on-going database marketing program for its e-shoppers will include promotions that leverage individual customer’s interests and purchasing behaviors and reward consumer loyalty.
Dashing Through the Web
The Web site, designed by Cleveland, Ohio-based Vantage One Communications, will be featured in this year’s Things Remembered corporate gift catalog. Vantage One is known for creating Web sites for companies such as Travelocity, Renaissance Hotels International and Exxon. “With the addition of e-commerce, TR is implementing an integrated strategy to reach every consumer through multiple touch points,” said Suzanne Sutter, president of Things Remembered.
Cole National is also a leading vision care provider operating under the brand names Pearle Vision, Sears Optical, Target Optical, BJ’s Optical, and Cole Managed Vision Care. The company also has a 24 percent interest in Pearle Europe, with stores in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany and Italy.