CHARLESTON, S.C. -- Piggly Wiggly Carolina Co. here has plans to extend an advertising campaign geared toward the upscale consumer in the Florence, S.C., and Savannah, Ga., markets.
The campaign, currently running here and in Columbia, S.C., began earlier this summer, according to Bruce Murdy, an associate with Rawle Murdy Associates, also based here, the advertising agency handling the project.
Diane Colgan, director of marketing at Piggly Wiggly, said the goal is to emphasize the stores' impressive wine selections as well as expanded selections of organic and all-natural grocery products.
Last fall, Piggly Wiggly purchased four stores in Columbia from rival Harris Teeter. Initially, the focus was on these stores, Colgan said.
"We invested heavily to expand and remodel our stores in the Columbia market," Colgan said. "A lot of these stores have extended or brand new departments. We have to let people know about it."
While many units have long maintained an extensive selection of wines in the store Wine Cellar, the retailer had never before advertised externally.
"It was more of a word-of-mouth phenomenon," Colgan said.
The stores have also carried a variety of organic and all-natural options for some time. People simply weren't aware of it, Colgan explained.
The ad spots are running in upscale city magazines such as Columbia Metropolitan, as well as other media outlets. Programs for symphonies, ballets and other cultural events throughout the target markets will also feature the ads, Murdy told SN. The retailer has taken advantage of such channels in the past, Murdy said, but never calling attention to a particular section.
"Earlier spots were traditional 'proud sponsor' announcements," he said.
The ads begin with the traditional company motto, "It feels like home." However, a twist has been added to create a classy veneer.
In addition to the advertising push, the company has been educating store managers and associates to better serve their customers, Colgan said. Individual stores are also running their own promotions to increase traffic to these sections.
"We are truly customizing our stores to our customer base," said Colgan. "We've always been a local grocery store, and we continue to improve our levels of quality, variety and education."