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    Target Pushes Fresh Foods

    Campaign includes outdoor ads in major urban markets

    Target Corp. has been aggressively marketing its fresh-food offerings this year in a major nationwide campaign as the retailer continues to reformat its stores to feature an expanded inventory of fresh groceries.

    So far, 350 of Target’s more than 1,700 stores nationwide have been reformatted to include the new food layout featuring meat, poultry and produce. The Minneapolis-based retailer expects to add the arrangement to additional stores at the rate of about 400 a year, The New York Times reported.

    The campaign includes direct mail, billboards, television, radio and vehicle wraps, among other elements. The ads focus in part on the three daily meals that could be put together with a trip to the store. “We focus on mom,” Tim Murray, Target’s creative director, told the Times. “She’s quite busy; dinner is ticking in the back of her mind every day. We can also offer her things to plan ahead for that next day as well.”

    Will Setliff, VP of marketing, added: “The concept is built around the notion of fill-in trips and convenience trips. There’s a real need for convenient and affordable grocery options.”

    Target began experimenting with the campaign in 2008 in Minnesota and followed that with a full-scale campaign in fall 2009 at more than 30 Target stores in the Philadelphia area. The effort continued this year with large-scale marketing efforts in Chicago; Washington, D.C.; Tampa, Fla.; and Denver.

    Target stocked fresh-food items alongside local products like Turkey Hill ice cream, Ellio’s Pizza and Herr’s potato chips. The retailer advertised in local newspapers, by direct mail and with door hangers on homes. It also handed out 10,000 samples of produce on the streets of Philadelphia.

    The Chicago campaign included a food truck parked on Michigan Avenue giving away gift bags of groceries and recipes that visitors could make with the ingredients in the bag. Giada De Laurentiis, the celebrity chef, gave live cooking demonstrations and handed out signed copies of her book, “Giada at Home.”

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