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Love at First Find

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It’s the name of Stein Mart’s newest marketing campaign, and it’s got shoppers talking. They’re sharing their favorite merchandise find, their latest deal and the fun they’re having along the way.

The new advertising campaign, Stein Mart’s first since tapping Arnold NYC, uses a mosaic format to marry photos of real shoppers with their upbeat comments about the store. The campaign crosses multiple formats including digital, social media, print and radio; it kicked off in September with a television campaign featuring real shoppers talking about their favorite merchandise. The spot ends with a call to action, encouraging shoppers to upload their own “Love at First Find” videos.

“We have such a loyal and passionate customer base that they really want to reach out to non-Stein Mart customers and get them to join the fold,” Glori Katz, senior vice president of marketing and advertising for the discount retail chain, recently told Marketing Daily. “It’s using customers in a way that we haven’t used them before.”

Katz isn’t saying if these recordings draw on the “video hauls” popular with the under-20 set; still, she hopes the videos will go a long way toward creating a full-fledged online community of customers. “As we tap into videos that customers submit, we hope it will catch on and take on a life of their own.” And there’s something in it for the shopper, too: Monthly prizes will be awarded to the shoppers producing the best videos for the next 10 months.

To further enable the promotion, Stein Mart has equipped each store with a digital camera and is encouraging sales associates to ask customers, “What have you found today?