Sample Case Study Paper on: Target

Since its establishment in 1962, Target has shown tremendous growth and has become the second-largest retail store in the US. The discount retail store sells a wide variety of products, which include household supplies, electronics, clothing, jewelry, toys, sporting goods and health and beauty products (Kotler & Keller, 2012). The company faces stiff competition from other well-established discount retail stores such as Wal-Mart and Kmart. However, through use of integrated marketing strategy, the company has been successive in the market.

Target’s Integrated Marketing Strategy

As indicated, Target has succeeded in the market over the years through the use of integrated marketing strategy. According to Kotler and Keller (2012), the company has positioned itself by offering quality products at a low price. The company offers high fashion brands from all over the world at a relatively low price to attract customers. The company has a slogan “Expect more, for less” which attract customers to its stores. Inside the stores, Target uses strategically placed shelves, cleaner fixtures, and halogen and track lighting to make the store attractive. The company has paintings of its red bull’s eye logo on the roof of the stores to attract customers. The company also uses the traditional mode of advertisements such as TV and radio ads, print ads, direct mailers and circulars targeting young customers who are brand enthusiasts. The company uses publicity to communicate to its customers by participating in various events and sports activities through corporate sponsorship. Target is also involved in corporate social responsibilities by helping the surrounding communities. Its online presence through its website and through social media, such as Twitter and Facebook allow target marketing as well as help to build strong brand loyalty (Castronovo & Huang, 2012).

To maintain its dominance in the market, Target need to enhance it integrated marketing strategy. First, the company needs to increase its online presence through internet marketing, email marketing, and content marketing. The company should also adopt mobile marketing to increase awareness and attract more customers (Castronovo & Huang, 2012). Target should also use sales promotions to attract customers as well as build loyalty from customers. Some sales promotion strategies that the company can use include coupons, rebates, discount pricing and offer product samples.

How Target Competes Against Walmart

Wal-Mart is the biggest competitor of Target in the US retail market. According to Joseph and Kuby, (2015), Walmart has positioned itself as a low-priced retail store to attract customers. The company has dominated the market since many customers are price sensitive. To compete successfully with Walmart, Target positions itself in terms of quality. Although Walmart offers their products at relatively low price, it has been criticized for low-quality products. To close the gap, target offer high-quality products sourced from different parts of the world at relatively low price. The company ensures it brings fashioned brands to the market faster than its competitors. Target has also added perishable goods, such as fresh produce to its inventory to compete with Wal-Mart. Target ensures that its fresh produces are of high quality and are offered at low prices (Joseph & Kuby, 2015).

The integrated marketing strategies used by Walmart and Target are also different. Walmart’s integrated marketing communication targets older people in the US who are price sensitive. On the other hand, Target’s integrated marketing communication targets young generation who are brand enthusiasts. Target integrated marketing communication aims at creating brand loyalty while Walmart aims at attracting sales (Mann, Byun & Li, 2015).

Target Tweaking Its Message to Focus on Value than Trend

Target did the right thing by tweaking its marketing message to focus on value than trends. At the time of recession, Target was losing its customers and market share to low-priced retailers such as Walmart (Mann, Byun & Li, 2015). The spending habits of the consumer had changed, and consumers only shopped for necessities offered at a low price. Hence, the company needed to respond to the market situation and focus on value to the customer than the brand (Mann, Byun & Li, 2015).


Castronovo, C., & Huang, L. (2012). Social media in an alternative marketing communication model. Journal of Marketing Development and Competitiveness, 6(1), 117-134.

Joseph, L., & Kuby, M. (2015). Modeling Retail Chain Expansion and Maturity through Wave Analysis: Theory and Application to Walmart and Target. International Journal of Applied Geospatial Research (IJAGR), 6(4), 1-26.

Kotler, P., & Keller, k.l. (2012). Marketing management. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall.

Mann, M., Byun, S. E., & Li, Y. (2015). Realignment strategies in the US retail industry during a recessionary time: dominant themes, trends, and propositions. International Journal of Retail & Distribution Management, 43(8), 775-792.