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November 26, 2006

Fortune 500 Corporate Blog Review: J.C. Penney #118 (JCP)

By Li Evans

Jcplogo J.C. Penney, famous for its catalogs and as one of today's leading retailers both in brick & mortar stores and with their online retail website, is up next in my list of Fortune 500 companies to research for the Fortune 500 Corporate Blog Review.  James Cash Penney started the business out in 1902 and it has grown into one of today's most recognized businesses by name alone.

No Corporate Blogs
Although they have an extensive investor relations section, complete with a searchable news release section, no corporate facing blogs could be found on the website.  A search of Technorati, Google, Ask, Yahoo and Live all turned up nothing in the way of an "Official JC Penney" blog - marketing or otherwise.

A search for the CEO and Chairman of the Board, Myron E. (Mike) Ullman, III, failed to turn up any blogs written by him as well.  JC Penney has a rather large corporate structure with a lot of different VPs, directors and other management people, so it is possible one of these people has a blog, but I do not believe they relate it to JC Penney - otherwise they would have come up.

Technoratijcpenney The buzz around JC Penney is pretty low key, other than for certain key times.  Blog post mentions go up around the time corporate earnings are released and also around Black Friday and the holiday shopping season.  There is a little written about Myron E. (Mike) Ullman, III as well, but the generally people are blogging about their experiences of purchasing things from JC Penney.

Marketing wise, JC Penney could utilize a blog to promote its recent venture with Sephora that started back in April of 2006.  It could help them with establishing the name recognition and link the two brands more soundly.  Right now, it does not seem to  be promoted online that well and a person coming to the JCP site could be confused as to why they see a "Sephora" tab within the navigation. 

Jcpenneysephora They could also explain some of their marketing attempts as well - the image inset here is their promotion on the Sephora page.  Now, I really hate to speak for all women - but looking like a circus clown is really not a goal I want to attain with my makeup, so this marketing piece is really just an immediate turn off.  It leaves me wondering - "Why?" - perhaps a blog on tips and trends in beauty and cross promote its venture with Sephora in this way.


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