Walmart’s “See For Yourself” Campaign, a Lesson in Local

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Vice President and Group Leader


Walmart, the world’s biggest retailer, has a particularly effective tool in its marketing arsenal – the truth. Despite cut-throat competition at every turn, Walmart is staying on top by offering its “Always Low Prices.”

For it’s “See For Yourself” TV campaign, Walmart took to the airwaves with the truth. The campaign features real customers shopping at rival retailers to see which offers the best prices. The answers speak for themselves.

The campaign quickly drew the ire of Walmart’s competitors, who were convinced the ads must have “cheated.” Some even requested that various state attorney generals investigate Walmart, believing the campaign was deceptive. But Walmart is staying in the clear by showing real stories from real consumers.  Speaking to Ad Age, Stephen Quinn, Walmart’s Chief Marketing Officer, said:

We have a protocol around how each of these is done. It’s somebody’s real list. We don’t tell them what to buy. We take those groceries from the competitor and scan them across our scanner so there’s no doubt about … if it’s the same item.

Walmart took the national campaign and made it local. According to Ad Age, Walmart airs real price comparisons of local stores in over 70 markets.

With the “See For Yourself” campaign’s success, Walmart expanded its horizons and took its message to radio with the help from CBS. The real life moms that are featured in the TV commercials dedicate one hour of their shoot day to call a CBS Radio talent in their local market and discuss their grocery experience at Walmart and how it will change their shopping habits in the future.

These interviews are turned into 60- second conversations that air in each specific market, helping listeners realize the savings potential by making Walmart their new destination for groceries.

Stephen Quinn recounts one customer who realized they were overpaying on their groceries by $30. “The look on the woman’s face,” Quinn remarked, “you could not pay an actor to have pulled off that look.”