Superdrug, the toiletries retailer, is moving on to TV for the first
time in its history with a series of ‘do-it-yourself’ commercials made
by its own customers.
In what is believed to be an advertising first, the films were shot with
neither a crew nor a script and with nobody present from the client, the
production company, nor Superdrug’s agency, Bates Dorland.
Instead, a group of selected Superdrug customers had cameras installed
in their homes, were shown how to use them and asked to talk to them for
a few minutes twice a day for a week.
The results have been edited into a dozen 40-second commercials, five of
which will begin a six-month test in the Tyne Tees area before a
probable national roll-out.
The strategy is part of an effort by Superdrug to establish a unique
positioning alongside its major rivals, Boots and the Body Shop.
It follows research that found consumers strongly associated Superdrug
with the company’s fight to sell fine fragrance brands at affordable
Julian Sandy, the Dorlands account director on the business, said:
‘Consumers felt that Superdrug was fighting on their behalf and we’re
attempting to build on that and make Superdrug the shoppers’ champion.’
The people taking part in the commercials were selected from a total of
500 approached as they came out of Superdrug stores in the London area.
The selection was made by the director, Martin Head, of Daryll Tate
Associates, who interviewed the finalists in their homes. Neither David
Prideaux, the copywriter, nor his art director, Nick Simons, got to work
on the commercials until all the film footage had been completed.
‘Once the cameras were installed we just left people to it,’ Sandy said.
‘We asked them to talk about everything from health and beauty to
shopping and boyfriends. The idea was for them to be as natural as
possible. Some people featured in the ads don’t mention Superdrug at