Jan 24 - H&M is ramping up its U.S. marketing- investing heavily in a pricey Super Bowl ad in an effort to raise its profile. Bobbi Rebell reports.
Beckham is back for H&M-part of their high stakes gamble that the second time is a charm at the Super Bowl. The 30-second spots themselves go for $4 million- and that's not including millions for everything around the ad. Good move says Morningstar's Jamie Katz: SOUNDBITE: JAMIE KATZ, EQUITY ANALYST, MORNINGSTAR (ENGLISH) SAYING: "Getting the name out there in front of the male audience, there is a fair amount of male product in the store, is something that could really boost that part of the business." The ads have a big interactive element where viewers can choose between two ads- voting covered or uncovered on the H&M website: Daniel Kulle is the President of H&M North America: SOUNDBITE: DANIEL KULLE, PRESIDENT, H&M NORTH AMERICA (ENGLISH) SAYING: "We also are going to have David Beckham appearance here in our flagship Times Square store, so you can come here and meet him and then, of course, also they can- here it's going to be a different competition: they can win tickets to the Super Bowl game and then during the game, we are going to have the commercial. We are going to have T-commerce, which means you can shop the collection while you are watching." It's part of the Swedish fast fashion retailers plan to further cement its footing on U.S. soil. SOUNDBITE: JAMIE KATZ, EQUITY ANALYST, MORNINGSTAR (ENGLISH) SAYING: "I think it was hard initially to come into the market and find the right real estate and get the right pricing on that and then the merchandising is always a little bit different when you go into a new country right? And so as you become more and more established and you have more data points to digest you are able to tailor the product better to what people want." REPORTER BRIDGE: BOBBI REBELL, REUTERS (ENGLISH) SAYING: "The retail business is a tough one these days. After a lackluster holiday season, retailers like H&M are under a lot of pressure to get consumers excited about shopping again." Kulle says their signature celebrity and designer driven lines continue to bring in more customers- and profits. SOUNDBITE: DANIEL KULLE, PRESIDENT, H&M NORTH AMERICA (ENGLISH) SAYING: "All times we have celebrities, or we have designer collaborations, we have long lines because people want to come and be the ones having a taste of those items, because they are fabulous. If you are looking now at the David Beckham collection, when you started, for the briefs are $9.95. It's a top notch product for 9.95. It's outstanding. So we have a hook when you are star shopping and from the star shopping you add more things to your basket." And that, they hope will be the big payoff from the big game.