Boots says getting into schools is creating loyalty among the next generation

Boots, which today (25 April) launched the second year of its Soltan Sun Ready awareness education programme, says that targeting young people is helping it to create brand awareness among the next generation.

The programme, created with agency EdComs, provides curriculum-linked learning resources and materials to schools to tackle awareness issues around sun safety covering subjects from PE to Science.

Boots’ head of brand and innovation Amber Kirby says the programme has expanded this year to 28,000 schools, with half a million children now given access to the materials.

It will also provide a 1,000 free Explorer packs to registered primary schools, which include sun cream samples and hats.

Kirby told Marketing Week: “Yes, it is raising our presence among the young but it is about much more than that. The UK has the highest rise of melanoma while UVA rays are creating hidden damage to people’s skin.”

“There is an opportunity here to not only provide a service with the Soltan sun tan lotion brand but also to really link sun awareness to the curriculum and do more [than just above-the-line advertising],” added Kirby. “We had 1,000 schools signed up within the first 24 hours last year, the rise in demand this year shows this message is resonating.”

A strong CSR message has become a marketing fixture over recent years.

Boots recently launched a similar educational campaign raising awareness of undiagnosed eye problems through the Zookeeper Zoe storybook, which is designed to help parents and carers to check if a child might need support with their vision.

Globally, meanwhile, 55% of consumers are willing to pay more for products and services provided by brands that are committed to positive social and environmental impact, according to Nielsen. This also appears to be translating into ROI for brands.

Last week, Pearson’s VP of brand Emilie Coker revealed that its Project Literacy campaign, which features advocates such as model Lily Cole talking up the negative social impact of illiteracy, had a 800% return on investment.

Kirby says that Boots will continue to make CSR a big part of its marketing. She concluded: “Boots wants to make sure it is always raising a health and happiness message. It has to be part of our ethos.”

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