For decades, Harry & David executives have eyed ways to enhance sales and revenue outside the make-or-break holiday shopping season.
In its quest to appeal to a broader range of shoppers and cultivate fruitful year-round relationships, Harry & David has introduced its “Share More” campaign designed to invigorate everyday sales.
When 1-800-Flowers.com acquired the post-Chapter 11, Medford-based gourmet food and gift company four years ago, Jim McCann — now chairman of the firm — made it clear Harry & David needed to boost sales in the spring, summer and fall.
“The challenge for the Harry & David business often has been in the past that they make more than 100 percent of their profits in the fourth calendar quarter, or second fiscal quarter,” McCann said. “But we are looking forward to staff utilization capabilities, our mix of different holidays where we have different complements ... we think the one-plus-one equals something more than two here.”
It’s taken a while, but Harry & David’s marketing gurus have developed a new approach.
Share More focuses on emotional engagement with customers while demonstrating Harry & David’s ability to help shoppers express, connect and celebrate everyday occasions, company officials said.
“When you find a repositioning that fits well with a brand, you know it,” said Michelle Farabaugh, chief marketing officer. “Every time we talked about it with the team, with the CEO, the president and the board, it just felt right. It’s such a natural complement for what we do and to bring Harry & David to life year-round. Everything we do is ultimately shared, and Share More goes with the holidays, special occasions, birthdays and promotions.”
The launch was timed to coincide with the annual harvest of comice pears — branded Royal Riviera by Harry & David.
“It was very intentional,” Farabaugh said. “Harvest time is an exciting, special time of the year in the valley. We’re picking pears and celebrating all the abundance with our fans and customers.”
Farabaugh came on board in July 2017, tasked with developing an overarching theme that will tie campaigns for seasons to come.
“This is not something that’s going to be short-lived,” she said. “It’s something that will be woven throughout all our campaigns for years to come.”
Farabaugh considers the new slogan a reflection of Harry & David’s culture.
Soon, “Share More” will be ubiquitous, she said. It will be incorporated into digital, video and social mediums, along with stores.
“You have to be really clear as to what your company’s vision is and what it means,” she said. “It needs to come to life at all touch points. It’s not just in one (sales) channel, but has to be prolific in everything you do. It’s about the people and passion behind everything we do, because that’s what makes us who we are as a brand; not that many companies are 84 years old.”
How well Share More fares in the marketplace will be easy to measure, Farabaugh said.
“As with anything in business, sales are the ultimate measure of success,” she said. “We want more than just engagement of existing customers, but to bring in new ones, as well. You can’t with only existing customers. This is a way to reach new customers.”
In conjunction with the new approach, Harry & David is holding a nationwide sweepstakes, delivering harvest gifts to 16 winners. The grand prize is a customized Harvest Gift Basket valued at more than $1,000.
Another aspect of the marketing effort is to encourage social media interaction. Consumers can use #ShareMore when posting photos and videos in posts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.