Superdrug is dropping Gavin & Stacey star Joanna Page from its ads as its switches marketing focus to customer service after delivering a stellar Christmas.
Page is not being replaced as Superdrug will instead market its customer service and convenience in its new TV ads which air next month.
Superdrug marketing director Matt Walburn said: “The advert had been very successful for the brand but we want to do something different. We will be focusing a lot more on TV advertising this year because it gives a bigger bang for your buck.”
Superdrug parent company AS Watson health and beauty UK managing director Joey Wat told Retail Week that last Christmas generated the retailer’s best like-for-like figure in five years. Although she would not divulge the actual number, Wat said the growth was a result of a “solid” management team.
Wat explained: “Christmas was not easy but compared to previous years we moved the company forward.
“We maintained very good margins and we do it for our shareholders and staff so we can improve EBITDA.”
But Wat was cautious about the year ahead: “My concern this year is that it will be even more challenging for retailers. Customers have less money in their pocket and its very clear what we need to do.”
Wat added she is continuing to find operational efficiencies across the whole of the business.
Wat revealed that Superdrug will invest further in its stores this year, refitting 300 of them in addition to the 300 refits last year. Meanwhile, it is introducing a new web platform later this year to give customers a more personalised shopping experience.
It is also highlighting its pharmacies in store, developing a new store design for the category.
Wat said: “We want to make them more accessible and friendlier and we want to extend this offer. The customer is quite young, so we want to do things like initiatives on sexual health. We are well-positioned to do so.”
In addition, Superdrug director of own brand Andrew Groom has left the retailer. Current buying director Simon Comins will take on his responsbilities.