Gap Marketing Strategy Plan

3251 words 14 pages
Strategy Brief (Part I)
April 3, 2007


The retail landscape has changed dramatically since the Gap's emergence as a powerhouse several decades ago. As the company has grown to become one of the giants of its industry, new challenges, including a more complex market and a more competitive landscape, have arisen that threaten to unseat the Gap from its casual-wear throne. Compounding the problem, the company has responded to this new competition by trying to change its brand identity, leaving its consumers confused and frustrated. Due to these internal and external pressures, the Gap is facing a decline in sales and revenue.

For the Gap to thrive, it must respond to the new retail landscape and its new
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All the Gap must do is get a greater share of the money already being spent.

At the heart of the issue is the fact that the Gap is in a fight for a declining share of the clothing dollar. This is due to a combination of what consumers are asked to spend combined with what they are willing to spend. The Gap must communicate to its customers that the value of the product is worth the price.

Consumer/Customer Analysis

The Gap's target consumers are middle market families (especially due to the proliferation of babyGap, Gap Kids, etc.). Due to its strong shopping mall presence and its "safe" image, the target skews suburban and is decidedly not fashion forward. This target has selected the Gap as the destination for comfort and safe fashion.

The Gap has, instead, been responding to retail trends and has confused its target by trying to appeal to on-trend shoppers. By producing clothes with trendy details that appear nonsensical on the basic style of the product, such as khaki pants with silver rhinestone trim, and through a communications strategy that has focused on incorporating celebrities that do not align with the brand, the Gap has left its original target confused. Meanwhile, the on-trend shoppers the company is now courting have already established brand affinity elsewhere, and see the Gap's "me-too" positioning as


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