Powerful PR puts Specsavers stores in the frame

AT A GLANCE

Freshwater has represented Specsavers stores in Wales for more than 15 years, translating the brand’s national public relations campaigns into tailored communications for Welsh media, as well as devising complementary regional and local activity.

Freshwater currently works with 40 Specsavers stores pan-Wales, delivering targeted communications to continually raise and enhance the profile of the businesses in their local communities.

HIGHLIGHTS

15 years

of delivering communications for Specsavers

40

stores receiving tailored PR programmes of activity

550+

pieces of positive coverage secured since 2016

BRIEF

Since 2004, Freshwater has worked with Specsavers to ensure the 40 stores across south and mid Wales have a positive media profile and engaging news content on their websites. We also help to position the businesses, which are locally-owned and run, as being high quality providers of optical and audiology services, to build trust in their local communities and drive footfall to stores.

DELIVERY

Tailored PR programmes are devised annually for each of the 40 stores, which are developed in collaboration with directors during a store visit, to map emerging news stories.

Local activity has seen Freshwater support a Ministerial visit to the Newport store to open a first-of-its-kind eye treatment centre; co-ordinate the PR for the Carmarthen store’s £400,000 relocation to a new premises, which was officially opened by Specsavers’ founder Doug Perkins and fashion designer Jeff Banks; and raise the profile of the Cardiff store’s audiology services by working with Cardiff City Football Club manager Neil Warnock to speak out about his battle with hearing loss for the first time.

We also develop regional campaigns to engage all 40 stores and create impactful bursts of activity throughout the year. These include establishing strategic charity partnerships and devising programmes of headline-hitting fundraising activity.

One partnership saw Specsavers stores donate almost £30,000 to the Welsh children’s hospice, Tŷ Hafan. In 2018, Specsavers staff helped a six-year-old with cerebral palsy climb the Welsh mountain, Pen y Fan, to raise awareness of Cerebra, a charity supporting families with children who have brain injuries.

The Freshwater team meets Specsavers’ national PR team every year to discuss upcoming communications priorities and significant national activity. We also deliver national campaigns in Wales to complement the stores’ local and regional media activity.

Two standout campaigns include ‘Spectacle Wearer of the Year’ – Specsavers’ search to find the nation’s proudest specs wearers – and ‘Transforming eye health’, which saw Specsavers partner with the Royal National Institute of Blind People to produce the State of the Nation Eye Health report – a benchmark of Britain’s eye health.

RESULTS

Our targeted approach to media relations has generated more than 550 pieces of attention-grabbing media coverage since 2016 alone, across print, online and broadcast news outlets in Wales and in national media titles, including BBC and Mail Online. In this time, we also drafted and published 912 website articles across the stores’ webpages and managed more than 60 photoshoots.

Eleven stories of customers who had sight or life-threatening health conditions, detected through eye tests at Specsavers stores in Wales, have also hit the headlines, raising awareness of the importance of regular sight tests.

As of October 2018, Specsavers dominated the share of voice in media outlets, achieving 81 per cent, compared to its closest competitor, who achieved just seven per cent.

CONTACT

Kate Harvey

Director
029 20 30 40 50

Client

Specsavers

Related services

    • Public Relations

Sectors

    • Healthcare
    • Leisure & retail

Dates

2004 - present