by Kara Rousseau, Vice President of Marketing, Walmart Connect
When we rebranded from Walmart Media Group to Walmart Connect earlier this year, some on our team were tentative about the change. We had just launched our media business a few years earlier, so I understood the hesitancy around the idea of changing the name so soon. But it was absolutely the right move. We’ve built a substantial media business that serves suppliers, sellers and marketers, in a way no one else can – as a closed loop omnichannel media company. We needed a new name that would reflect our unique ability to foster a meaningful connection between brands and customers. These are three lessons we learned along the way that demonstrate the why behind the rebrand.
Lesson #1: Leverage inherent strengths
Walmart is a Fortune 1 company and a leading omni retailer, known for its scale and commitment to customers and the communities it serves. The fact is, 90% of Americans live within 10 miles of a Walmart. So, it was clear the word “Walmart” needed to remain a part of our brand name. It’s an established brand that is respected and deeply integrated into people’s lives.
Those same values are the differentiators for us at Walmart Connect. Closing the loop is so important in the media business and nobody else in retail offers the scale of Walmart and Walmart Connect. We’re not just in-store, online, grocery or general merchandise. We’re all of that, which means our data truly reflects the base of all Americans — and we leverage it to help connect brands with our customers.
Lesson #2: Keep It Simple & Authentic
Walmart is unique in that there’s always been a direct-to-customer relationship, and our media ecosystem is comprised of all of the various touchpoints that allow our brands to connect more meaningfully and measurably with their customers. So “Walmart Connect” is as simple and authentic as it gets because we’re leading with our commitment.
At Walmart Connect, we work alongside brands to understand what they’re trying to solve for. We use those conversations and our relationships across the business to help build integrated plans that leverage the power of Walmart and our first-party data to connect with the right customers in ways that will enhance their experience. And because there’s a direct relationship, we’re accountable to our suppliers. This is more than serving up ads. This is about creating meaningful and authentic connections between brands and customers. When that happens, everyone wins.
Lesson #3: A name may just be the beginning, but it's also the title of your story and that’s significant
Our vision is to go beyond traditional media to leverage the full ecosystem of Walmart — stores, online, events, the app, pickup & delivery, all of it — along with data and insights to partner with brands to create connections. The name “Walmart Media Group”wasn’t capturing that.
The word “connect" embodies the emotion and the human element of what we do. If there’s one thing we’ve all learned coming out of the pandemic, it's the value of human connection. Customers thrive on connection with each other, and we saw this first-hand in the community events we hosted in towns across the U.S., like the Walmart Drive-In Movies or Holiday Drone Show last year. Customers also expect more from their brands — they expect personalization, relevance and alignment with their values.
Walmart Connect provides the scale, targeting, accountability and humanity to connect more meaningfully with our customers. Contact Walmart Connect to start your next campaign.