Integrated Marketing – Getting It Right Is Hard

Today, I received a really terrific piece in the mail from Banana Republic. Now, let me say upfront that most of these kinds of mailers usually go directly from the mailbox into the trash, but this one was different.

Mad Style. Introducing the Limited Edition Banana Republic Mad Men Collection.
To be honest I don’t really watch much television, but I have seen several episodes of Mad Men and found it to be a really entertaining show. Part of what I enjoyed about it was the period style, and when I opened the Banana Republic mailer I felt like they’d captured it perfectly, but in a completely updated, modern way. I’m not a fashion hound by any stretch of the imagination, but if I was ever going to have a ‘signature style,’ this would be it.

That may harken back to my teenage years, when I discovered – much to my surprise – that my father actually owned a sweater and skinny ties that were ‘totally’ in style. That refined but not overdone look is something I’ve been attracted to ever since.

Where Banana Republic Missed the Boat
I’m somewhat of a lazy social sharer, as I suspect are most people. I’ll happily Share to Facebook or Retweet something if you make it easy for me. But rarely am I going to go searching for a way to extend your advertising efforts.

In this case, though, I was so intrigued by the clothes (and, truthfully, by the brilliance of the marketing tie-in) that I actually went online in search of something that I could post to Facebook and/or Twitter.

Sadly, I found nothing of value. Numerous articles about how Banana Republic was going to release a Mad Men line, and a few (weak) posts on blogs about the actual launch. But nothing that really showcased the clothes in the mailer, and, oddly, nothing from Banana Republic itself. Nothing.

Really, truly, nothing. There’s no mention of it on their website, not even if you do a search.

Worse yet, the mailer directs you to a url ( to get information about the upcoming cocktail parties (how apropos!) on August 11. Unfortunately, as of this writing that url redirects to a default page at

Banana Republic - Integrated Marketing Fail!

See anything about Mad Men there? Me neither.

This is a perfect example of why integrated marketing is so important. All the pieces have to fit together perfectly to pull something like this off. Sadly, Banana Republic missed the mark this time. (Though I still want the clothes.)


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