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Macy's preserves all-American image with summer selfie campaign

Macy?s is kicking off its American Icons summer campaign with a selfie push on social media as it seeks to embody the easygoing, fun-loving lifestyle of the warmer months while cementing its all-American image. 

The selfie initiative encourages consumers to share a picture that personifies what America means to them with the hashtag #AmericanSelfie, making the consumer apart of its marketing image and creating a greater connection. Numerous pictures will be selected to be a part of the prominent annual Macy?s July 4 Fireworks, broadcasted on national television and a donation will be made to non-profit campaign for Veterans, Got Your 6 with each post, all of which entices consumers to get involved.

"The question isn't how important is it to incorporate a social media campaign to create an authentic brand image, but rather, how detrimental is it to NOT incorporate social media," said Marci Troutman, CEO of Siteminis. "The numbers speak for themselves as you can see in report after report online, showing that the consumers are on social media.  

"Social media is where a large percentage get their news on fashion, new brands, and new product lines," she said. "The best part, or worst part if the product isn't good, about this medium for marketing is that there are instant reviews from social media browsers that are from friends, family and trusted sources.  

"Brands can win big or lose big in minutes of a launch, where before it could take months."

#AmericanSelfie is just one aspect of the American Icons campaign this summer. Macy?s is planning a slue of summer events, concerts and digital campaigns centered around warmer weather and support of veterans, just in time for Memorial Day, a national holiday that represents both ideals. 

Frontlines of perception 
The department store will also be encouraging in-store, online and mobile customers to donate three dollars to the Got Your 6 cause. The non-profit campaign seeks to ease veteran?s return to everyday life and to change the social conception of soldiers through a transformation of veterans depicted in the entertainment industry. 

Macy?s partnership with the Got Your 6 campaign takes the all-American brand image one step further, ensuring that the representation of Macy?s in the consumer?s mind is authentic and creates a loyalty to the brand, keeping customers coming back. Implementing a social media and mobile aspect spreads the reach even further and accesses consumers from all fronts.

The #AmericanSeflie campaign makes the consumer apart of the brand as well, creating an additional loyalty to the brand. 

American Icons also comes in time to promote the surplus of new brands and merchandise for summer. Macy?s will be sharing designers, things and places they love across all digital, mobile and social platforms with links to shop corresponding merchandise on mobile optimized sites and also desktop. 

Macy's spotlights locations around the U.S. on social media and its mobile site

The numerous celebrity-focused brands and apparel will be a central point in the American Icons campaign as well, taking advantage of the ability for these big names to trend on social media and grab consumers? attention. 

Special events will take place all through summer, advertised through social media. For instance a food sampling, photo opportunity with dancing with the stars alum Maksim Chmerkovsky, fashion presentation with live American themed music and beauty class from the First Lady?s makeup artist will all be held at the flagship store in Herald Square, NY as well as other events spread throughout the country. 

Mobile-forward brand
The American Icon campaign is not the only mobile-steps Macy?s has been taking lately. The retailer is known for its presence in mobile and recently developed its new Backstage concept, which pairs two of the hottest trends in retail ? off-price stores that sell high-profile brands at a discount and mobile marketing ? a strategy that could help it reach impulse buyers with location-based marketing (see more). 

Also, A Macy?s executive at the Mcommerce Summit: State of Mobile Commerce 2015 discussed how the retailer?s marketing and technology departments work closely together, enabling it to bring innovations such as visual search to market while making the organization more comfortable with testing new solutions that may not be perfect yet (see more).

It is vital for brands to be available to consumers through mobile and social media, but also incorporate them into the content.

"Partnering with a non-profit for the new Macy's campaign is not what will help the success of creating a new brand image in this case," Ms. Troutman said. "While the non-profit doesn't hurt as it is for a good cause and most consumers are sympathetic to a good cause; in this case, what is going to help this campaign be successful is that consumers have a chance to have their selfie be a part of a much larger campaign. 

"Consumers like having their selfies be promoted and to be a part of the celebrations from this campaign in Nashville is most likely what will cause success," she said.

Final take
Brielle Jaekel is editorial assistant at Mobile Marketer and Mobile Commerce Daily