The brand campaign “Shopping is Back!” aims to celebrate shopping as the retailer commemorates 120 years in business. The campaign also targets in-store shoppers, urging consumers to “get back out there.”
The campaign comes soon after JCPenney’s parent companies, Simon Property Group and Canada-based Brookfield Asset Management, offered $6.8 billion to acquire retailer Kohl’s. JCPenney was a casualty of the COVID-19 pandemic, filing for bankruptcy in 2020 before being acquired. The company has continually made changes since gaining new owners, including adding more private labels and a partnership with Forever 21.
As part of the campaign, JCPenney is offering:
a special sales promotion of 30% off storewide for reward members;
an extra $10 bonus reward for every $50 spent now through April 12;
a series of advertising spots featuring Melissa Villaseñor;
and the JCPenney Cross-Country “Shopping is Back!” Tour that brings the party to families and communities across the U.S.
“As we reach the 120-year milestone and step into a new season — for fashion and our company — there’s a lot of excitement around JCPenney, which shines through in our campaign,” said Bill Cunningham, vice president of marketing, JCPenney. “‘Shopping is Back!’ allows us to spotlight our standout portfolio of private brands, national brands and partnerships, the inclusivity at the heart of our company and product assortments, and the work we’ve done as a business to evolve once again.”
Villaseñor, a TV and film comedian and current cast member of “Saturday Night Live,” will star as the recurring character Penny James, a JCPenney superfan.
The JCPenney Cross-Country tour will offer a block party-style celebration with local food vendors, games, music and giveaways at each stop. JCPenney and its associates will also team up with nonprofit partners in the communities the tour visits to support the company’s philanthropic mission to help close the opportunity gap for under-resourced youth. The tour will make its way coast-to-coast visiting stores starting May 14 through the summer and back-to-school season.
“The character of Penny James is a playful tribute to our customers and what they love about JCPenney. Shopping is back, and it’s time for JCPenney to be bold and lively, just like Penny,” Carl Byrd, vice president, creative and brand synergy, JCPenney, said in a statement. “We found a dream collaborator in Melissa, who graciously helped bring this unforgettable and endearing representative of our brand to life.”