Holly’s written an interesting take on the squabbles inside of Kmart/Sears to start carrying Lands End products in their stores. I agree. It will likely do much harm to the exclusive brand name that Lands End has spent decades building.
On the positive side, it opens the door for the growth of the next Lands End. Any takers?
I definitely do not think this is a good idea for Lands End. Sears may own the brand, but that just means they are hurting their own brand image by throwing it around everywhere. I thought it was a bad idea to sell Lands End in Sears, but Kmart? Come on. Lands End has enough trouble playing second fiddle to L.L.Bean; now they’re about to be cheapened to a Kmart brand? Sears needs to focus on what made Lands End successful-quality, practical clothing at an affordable price, easily purchases over the phone or online. They’ve trashed what the brand stood for by throwing the brand around everywhere. Even if the quality is the same, who wants to say they got it at Kmart? Like it or not, there’s a stigma there and it’s not acceptable to most people to buy your clothes where you buy your toilet paper.
I remember when Lands End almost pushed LL Bean off the map. They became the place I always looked first for quality, variety, and service.
Lately Lands End seems to have become a mere shadow of its former self. The few catalogs I get are pitiful. It looks like LL Bean is the new Lands End.