PROFILE

Lucille DeHart

Principal, MKT Marketing Services/Columbus Consulting

Lucille DeHart is a seasoned retail marketing professional with over 25 years’ experience working for such prestigious brands as TUMI, Polo Ralph Lauren, Maidenform, Liz Claiborne, and Westfield International.
Her credentials include: having initiated an international fashion show at Amsterdam Fashion Week as CMO of Maidenform, launching the Rugby brand at Ralph Lauren and producing a documentary about the legendary Jack Lalanne (now streaming on ROKU) while in her position at Tristar Products Inc.

In her most recent position at Bed Bath & Beyond, Lucille headed up half of the life stage division, managing approximately $2.0 billion in revenue. She oversaw marketing strategy, CRM and business development for both the US and Canada.

During her career, Lucille has managed diverse teams from creative departments to database professionals. She has a solid history of strategic thinking with a foundation in delivering exceptional ROI on marketing programs, most notably reversing market share trends and rebuilding brands in decline with 360 innovative business plans.
After working her way up the corporate ladder, Lucille has pivoted her focus and launched MKT Marketing Services LLC, a consultancy group and brand creation firm. Her first brand, Yogassists.com, is a digitally native retailer launched in 2021.

Lucille is a sought after public speaker, she was featured as the keynote speaker for the INFOGROUP advisory board and NYC Argyle Forum-CMO series and continues to serve on many panels including those for Total Retail. She is an active member of WIRLC (women in retail leadership circle) and is a contributing writer for SHARPHEELS.COM. As an accomplished writer, Lucille has been showcased as a playwright in NJ Voices, was published as an acclaimed poet and provided professional content and articles for both Harvard University and assorted marketing organizations including haven written several chapters for INSIDE THE MINDS by Aspatore Press. She will also be featured in the up- coming COLAB book, COLLABORATION and is a member of community organizations in both Nantucket and New Jersey. Lucille serves as an advisor to the FDU School of the Arts and Marketing Council and also works advising BOTASCI (a fit technology company).

She is a skilled leader with formal training at CCL (Center for Creative Leadership) institute. Active participant in management training programs and executive coaching programs.

Lucille is a Summa Cum Laude full scholarship graduate of FDU with numerous academic awards including haven been the Valedictorian of her HS class. She is a certified social media strategist and an awarded member of the Top 50 Female Brand leaders. She was also awarded the title of the top 20 women in direct marketing by the DMA.

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  • Posted on: 09/20/2022

    Is livestream commerce about to break through?

    In a word, YES! Livestream has actually been one of the most powerful selling techniques in the U.S. for years -- think QVC and DRTV/As Seen On TV infomercials. Livestream is just a short product demo at its core. I would caution marketers to not use this as a branding tool first, but to look at it as a selling tool. The power of influencers is declining, but the use of the media is not. Make your product the star of the spot, use livestream to honor top customers with first access and always creatively show the features and benefits of what you are selling -- shoppers are smart.
  • Posted on: 09/15/2022

    Will upgraded virtual try-on tech get more Walmart shoppers to say yes to the dress?

    3-D and virtual customer engagement is the future of retail, but is still in a low engagement phase. I don't believe it will encourage more purchasing, however if the technology accurately reflects fit, it could minimize return rates and help with profit.
  • Posted on: 09/13/2022

    Is traditional advertising on the cusp of a comeback?

    I think the marketing universe needs to better position "traditional" advertising and not bucket those media efforts based on their life in the media timeline. There is and will continue to be an emergence of the re-introduction of core advertising elements within marketing plans. Direct mail and print media are now in a much less cluttered space and will perform better compared to other vehicles, though they will target a much smaller audience. In a similar fashion, the fragmented streaming market is dissecting broad reach so we will see more impactful "broadcast" or "all cast" efforts from major national brands--think Super Bowl. Consumers are looking for a sense of shared community that consistently shifts. In addition, there must be a balance of introducing innovation and newness to any marketing plan. A balance of new/old and emerging media will be critical to success. Look for 3-dimensional marketing and vehicle messaging as driverless cars start to surface into the market.
  • Posted on: 09/01/2022

    Will Bed Bath & Beyond’s new turnaround plan work any better than the previous one?

    Back to basics is not a new strategy for Bed Bath & Beyond. While I completely agree that they should always be in stock and competitive on their top brands and SKUs (Dyson, Kitchenaid, OXO, etc), they need to reintroduce the element of discovery. The store experience is lost. Customers loved going in to get something specific and walking out with five other items they didn't know they needed, but saw and wanted. They lost that magic with a focus on "owned brands."
  • Posted on: 09/01/2022

    Peloton looks to get back in shape by selling on Amazon

    At this point, not selling on Amazon is a detriment to any brand looking for more immediate sales expansion. I have always been a fan of brands keeping their channels vertical to protect the access and experience, but Amazon is too large to ignore. The one cautionary note is to make sure that they build in the margin loss dealing with Amazon services and that they launch new products directly for a period of time to capture consumer data.
  • Posted on: 08/30/2022

    Would organic grocery stores do better if coupled with conventional food stores?

    Like anything else, consumers have blended preferences. From shopping Neimans and Target to specialty foods and mass grocers. The average consumer will pick and choose what they are willing upgrade for and to invest in and where they just want value and basics. The same is true in the grocery industry. Placing Express/EatWell together should help meet this behavioral need. As long as there are shared carts and check outs, this should be a win-win.
  • Posted on: 08/22/2022

    Are inflation bonuses worth it for retailers?

    Retaining top talent should be a top concern but blanket bonuses not based on merit may not achieve the desired results. I like the concept of frontline employee retention initiatives but any increase in overhead will trickle down to the consumer. Offering employees deeper discounts to retail assortments is probably a better position to take as the effort helps both the employee and the store.
  • Posted on: 08/16/2022

    Will circular commerce drive traffic to stores?

    The greatest challenge with resale as a profit driver is the overall cost associated with the entire process. While consumers like the idea of contributing to a more environmentally responsible practice, retailers need to first figure out how to seamlessly absorb resale items into their systems so that they can manage inventory, plan merchandising assortments and flow in goods appropriate to season and local. That said, with rising inflation, resale seems to offer consumers a viable option for cost savings, which will ultimately determine the success of the program. I do believe that the industry will figure this out, much like the car industry leveraged certified pre-owned cars as a revenue and consumer acquisition stream. Will this type of retail drive in-store traffic? Uncertain, I don't really see overall consumer behaviors changing for one segment of the market; I do think online resale will drive the growth, at least initially.
  • Posted on: 08/11/2022

    Is retail now facing a warehouse crisis?

    This is a case of the pendulum swinging the other way. Stock will right-size once retailers create a more accurate, predictive system for end-to-end transparent supply chain management. The current bottleneck is a direct result of front loading inventory post pandemic depletion and labor shortages. But, as with most business challenges, the solution could be beneficial to another transforming industry -- shopping center development. Using retail space for commercial use is saving a lot of overdeveloped malls.
  • Posted on: 08/04/2022

    New stores are opening in malls, inflation or no

    This is a case of survival of the retail fittest. Well-managed centers in the right locations will thrive and pick up market share as digitally native, commercial and traditional brands look to right-size their footprints. Developers need to be innovative in their leasing approach, balancing space with food, services, commercial spaces and even mini-distribution/black out stores.
  • Posted on: 07/19/2022

    President Biden’s executive order aims to keep the freight trains running on time

    This would completely derail the holiday season and result in longer-term supply chain lag. The industry has yet to fully recover from the last 18 months and cannot afford to have delivery delays.
  • Posted on: 07/06/2022

    H&M discovers it’s not easy being green

    There is nothing worse for a brand than breaking the brand promise. Claiming to be "green" is not enough today, consumers are savvy and will demand transparency. As retailers race to adhere to ESG practices, they will encounter not only issues with measurement accuracy but with profit compromise. The best first step for every manufacturer/retailer is to establish a more sophisticated end to end supply chain. Having a strong planning, merchandising and allocation system will better ensure that the right amount of products get made and go to the right places to the right consumers. Produce less waste upfront.
  • Posted on: 07/05/2022

    Will Amazon’s grab-and-go tech elevate store analytics?

    I have always believed that data is only as valuable as you apply it and execute against it. Providing brands with direct consumer data at the point of sale is extremely beneficial. Prior to that brands had to rely on actual purchase behaviors and market share reports which don't provide insights into pre-purchase intent. Providing a seamless interface between the data and the advertising platforms will benefit both the brands and the retailers.
  • Posted on: 06/29/2022

    Will a gas tax holiday drive retail in the right direction?

    No. No is the answer. A 90-day gas tax holiday is like putting a Band-Aid on a broken leg. The real fix is in energy generation. The speed to green without an alternate reliable transition plan post-pandemic forced a higher rate of demand with a lower supply. Retailers will need to look for ways to bundle deliveries more efficiently, maximize container and truck space and ultimately pass along the costs to consumers -- which is inevitable.
  • Posted on: 06/29/2022

    What worked at Target didn’t work for Mark Tritton at Bed Bath & Beyond

    Bed Bath & Beyond is not Target. The retailer has its own set of challenges and issues. The owned brands and cleaner stores were not at the top of the list to fix, but that is where leadership focused first. The real work needs to be done behind the scenes. Realignment of the organization, enhanced systems, fixing the fulfillment process. While as a marketer I appreciate the speed to tell a good story, the executive team was too quick to share a story not yet written. Changing signage, developing private label lines and stripping away the talent on day one was the wrong first step.

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