“Unfortunately we are unable to respond to your inquiry because Target does not participate with nontraditional media outlets,” a public relations person wrote to ShapingYouth, a blog about the impact of marketing on children. “This practice is in place to allow us to focus on publications that reach our core guest. We do not work with bloggers currently” the person went on to write.
Earlier this month, the blog’s founder, Amy Jussel, called Target to complain about a new ad campaign that depicted a woman splayed across Target’s giant emblem with the bull’s-eye at her you-know-what. Yuck, but I guess we’ve seen worse.
Wow, will Target be the last hold out to see blogging as a real media channel? By doing so they have taken themselves out of the conversation and have a storm brewing on their hands. Search their name and you’ll see this storm on page one for news. I wonder when some pages will make their way in to the web results and not just news results.
Some people covering the controversial public relations response wonder how can Target, or any other large corporation, respond to every post. Good question, but I think it can be done and should. Target needs to move to a PR agency that understands the Internet and throw a few dedicated people to be a part of the online conversation. They’ll learn so much about their “audience”, products, service, and web site, that it would be well worth the money spent.