They aren't normally tools of the retailing trade, but a hammer and a wrench did hit the nail on the head recently for two Southern California department stores.
When Bullock's special-events staff wanted to pique reporters' interest in a "sneak preview" of the new downtown store in Citicorp Plaza, publicity manager Mary Carley sent out 20 hammers.
"We wanted to make sure you knew you were coming to a store that wasn't finished," Carley said. The new store--the chain's 23rd and its first new location in almost three years--will open to the public Aug. 6.
The Broadway, which plans to open its 43rd store on Nov. 1 in Orange County, also decided on a nuts-and-bolts approach to promote a "hard-hat tour." Dana Tibbitts, director of public relations, mailed universal wrenches with cards reading: "Hope we can wrench you away for a sneak preview of the Broadway South Coast Plaza."
This was obviously an idea whose time had come. "And here we thought we were so original," Tibbitts said. "Pretty soon you'll have a whole tool kit."