Persuading Consumers to “Think Outlet”

Outlet Perspectives

In the early days of outlet retailing, marketers were itching to launch a nationwide initiative like the dairy industry’s “Got Milk?” campaign. That campaign, which featured dozens of celebrities with milk mustaches, was enormously influential. So why not a “Think Outlet,” campaign?

Before the idea gained traction, Chelsea Property Group launched the first Thanksgiving night outlet-shopping extravaganza, dubbed Midnight Madness. Within two years, thousands of shoppers were pouring into outlet centers on Thanksgiving night and backing up interstates across the country. There was little question that the outlet industry owned Midnight Madness.

Ten years later, Midnight Madness and its cousin Moonlight Madness, are sharing Thanksgiving with many other retail venues. Thus we ask, “Does the outlet industry need a fresh national campaign?

No longer does the outlet industry own Midnight Madness, which is now part of the consumers’ lexicon. As Midnight Madness has evolved recently to include the entire retail industry, we need a strategic edge to capture a greater share of the pre-holiday market. That said, without the holistic effort of all outlet developers, including Simon Premium Outlets and Tanger Outlets, our success as an industry will be limited by our ability to create a program on a national scale that is meaningful to the consumer.
— Karen Fluharty | President | Strategy + Style Marketing