Just as fashionistas know that maroon is the new black this autumn, media pros know that scrolling is the new flipping. Sears has taken the latter trend to heart and is currently rolling out an iPad version of its “Sears Look Report” catalogue for the first time.
The tablet iteration is appearing in the iPad versions of several Rogers Publishing magazines from Flare to Maclean’s. A short teaser for the product runs when readers open their tablet issues.
Rogers Publishing and Toronto-based agency Vizeum Canada created the 35-page interactive tablet version of the retailer’s Canadian catalogue, which includes products from clothing to kitchenware from its fall 2012 collection.
“Sears wanted to be on the latest platforms, and this is a perfect extension of the print product… The key goal was to stay relevant with consumers,” said Jeff Barlow, senior director, innovation/marketing solutions at Rogers Publishing.
Micheal Bispo, senior vice-president and managing director of Vizeum Canada, said this was the next natural step for the “Sears Look Report.” He said Vizeum, which has been Sears’ media agency of record since July 2011, wanted to extend the catalogue to a whole new audience knowing that there’s a growing segment of the population that’s consuming content through mobile devices. “As we look at how people consume media we want to make sure we use touch points that connect with all consumers.”
The tablet version of the “Sears Look Report” includes features typical of the platform: expandable images, swipe-through galleries, social sharingand embedded videos that feature Sears spokespeople giving details about different lines the retailer carries.
It also includes links to Sears’ e-commerce service so readers can directly purchase items by tapping them – an important element, Barlow said.
There are also ad units within the app which offer “edutainment,” said Barlow. One unit includes a video makeup tutorial about how to create a smoky eye, for example.
The iPad version of the “Sears Look Report” launched first in Flare’s October iPad issue on Aug. 24. By mid-September, it will appear on other Rogers publications’ tablet editions for Chatelaine (the English and French editions), Hello! Canada, Today’s Parent, Loulou (English and French editions) and Maclean’s. “We’re giving [Sears] an existing audience,” said Barlow, adding that the interactive tablet catalogue is the first of its kind in Canada.
Earlier this year, Sears Canada president and CEO Calvin McDonald commented that the retailer recognized the importance of visibility in the expanding online and digital world.