An eye on the value of service

Alan Mitchell’s article on “no-frills” value brands (MW February 5) made many illuminating points but also raises a number of thorny issues for small to medium-sized companies trying to compete with the emerging big players.

Take for instance the world of optics, where Specsavers has played a similar role to that of easyJet, Asda et al. With its 25 per cent market share and immense buying power, it is virtually impossible for independent groups to compete price-wise with Specsavers.

Straight Bat Marketing has been advising a client, a regional opticians chain, to launch a “value all-in-one inclusive range” to compete with the likes of Specsavers, while acknowledging and placing emphasis on the fact that the only way to maintain (if not build) market share is to ensure that levels of service far exceed those of an operation such as Specsavers.

I am glad to report that since the launch of the “value range”, sales have increased five per cent and the number of lapsing patients has fallen. But I am in no doubt that the “value” brands are here to stay, and more challenges lie ahead.

Andrew Mallinson

Straight Bat Marketing

Pewsey, Wilts

Latest from Marketing Week


Access Marketing Week’s wealth of insight, analysis and opinion that will help you do your job better.

Register and receive the best content from the only UK title 100% dedicated to serving marketers' needs.

We’ll ask you just a few questions about what you do and where you work. The more we know about our visitors, the better and more relevant content we can provide for them. And, yes, knowing our audience better helps us find commercial partners too. Don't worry, we won't share your information with other parties, unless you give us permission to do so.

Register now


Our award winning editorial team (PPA Digital Brand of the Year) ask the big questions about the biggest issues on everything from strategy through to execution to help you navigate the fast moving modern marketing landscape.


From the opportunities and challenges of emerging technology to the need for greater effectiveness, from the challenge of measurement to building a marketing team fit for the future, we are your guide.


Information, inspiration and advice from the marketing world and beyond that will help you develop as a marketer and as a leader.

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3703 or email

If you are looking for our Jobs site, please click here