• The book containing the eye test was a triumph of creative delivery, based on a carefully thought out plan on an issue of great significance. Red Consultancy identified a moment in time when they could access parents in the right frame of mind, based on in-depth audience research. Their evaluation demonstrated strong correlation between the campaign flow and the results, and their 11% increase in eye tests provided real value for money. The campaign is now set to go international and we all want to know what Zoe will do next!


  • Institution of Occupational Safety and Health (IOSH)
    No Time to Lose
  • Knightstone Housing
    Stopping the cycle of abuse in Somerset
  • Medicines & Healthcare products Regulatory Agency
    Increasing reporting of adverse drug reactions across Europe
  • Shout! Communications, Sourced PR and MSD Animal Health, Bravecto
    The Big Tick Project
  • St John Ambulance and Tesco
    CPR Babygrow


Brief and objectives:

53% of UK children have never had an eye check and an estimated one million have undiagnosed eye conditions.  Boots Opticians briefed Red Consultancy to address this issue by:

  • Driving awareness of the importance of early years children’s eye checks
  • Creating talkability and inspiring engagement in the campaign at and beyond launch
  • Encouraging more parents to book children’s eye checks.


Rationale behind campaign, including research and planning:

Target Audience:  Parents of young children (core age: 2 – 4 years)

Monitoring eye health in children is challenging for parents as young children often don’t realise they’re not seeing properly so it’s hard for parents to spot there’s a problem.  Based on this consumer insight, we sought to give parents the tools for identifying potential eye issues but in a way that children would engage with.

However, the right tone was important. Family life is hectic so it’s no wonder eye checks slip off the radar.  Finger-wagging could see parents switch off from our message rather than embrace it.  We needed to nudge parents into action by creating something that positively entertained and fitted into their daily routine.

Our solution was a storybook with built in eye checks, delivering an ‘eye check by stealth’ that would be interactive, engaging and fun for parent and child.


Strategy and tactics, including creativity and innovation:


DEMONSTRATE Boots eye health specialism in a ‘feel good’ way:

  • Create a fun and interactive storybook to engage parents in their children’s eye health, encouraging them to book an eye check.

Positively DISRUPT our audience:

  • Develop a storybook incorporating eye checks to get parents thinking about booking a full, free, eye check at Boots
  • Fit into parents’ daily routine by turning up during a regular moment parents share with their children – story time
  • Using the insight that smart phones are already part of many parent/child relationships, make the storybook available as a fully responsive mobile-optimised microsite plus a published book
  • Create content that provides opportunities to land our message in mainstream, rather than only health media, for mass awareness.

HARNESS influencers to endorse and spread our message:

  • Secure the support of children’s literature experts to endorse the book’s quality
  • Secure the support of popular culture parent-influencers to grab our target audience’s attention.


Create our engaging central asset:

  • Worked with a children’s author and illustrator to create a story about a girl who became a zookeeper incorporating eye checks on focus, colour, detail distinction and astigmatism. The National Literary Trust reviewed the story to ensure it met necessary quality standards
  • Book available via microsite (with a link to the booking page for a Boots Eye Check) plus 450,000 free print copies available in selected Boots stores.

Harness celebrity parent ambassadors/celebrators:

  • Collaborated with celebrity dad Peter Andre to ensure popular mainstream media coverage. Peter chosen as his children wear glasses so has a personal interest in children’s eye health. Secured exclusive media interviews plus short film with Peter to promote the book via social
  • Created zoo-themed launch party attended by media, parenting bloggers and celebrity parents. Celebrities invited for their appeal to different types of Boots customer and to provide a route into mainstream media.

Earned PR & Social:

  • Hardworking media relations targeted news, health ad showbiz whilst celebrities, bloggers and media celebrated the launch on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook.


  • Extended campaign through other Boots marketing channels including in-store, digital and advertising.


Implementation of tactics:

Advanced sell ins (w/c 22 Feb – w/c 7 March):

Objective: Line up editorial under embargo to hit during launch week to reach target audience multiple times during a single week.

  • Embargoed media outreach including news, parenting, health, literary and lifestyle
  • Embargoed Peter Andre media interviews.

Book launch party (Sunday 13th March):

Objective: Drive mass top line awareness by placing entertaining content to appear on Sunday afternoon/evening when parents are more likely to have the time and inclination to peruse.

  • Media, celebrities and children invited to launch party
  • Images distributed to showbiz and picture desks for immediate use.

Launch week (w/c 14th March):

Objective: Deliver on-going quality editorial with detailed educational messaging to continuously re-hit audience, increasing memorability to encourage action.

  • Hardworking media relations across all media segments
  • Peter Andre social posts
  • Content distributed across Boots owned social channels.


Measurement and evaluation:

Encourage more parents to book eye checks for their children:

  • Measurable uplift in children’s eye appointments year-on-year at Boots Opticians since book launch
  • 39% of those who read the story online continued to read about the test results
  • Of those, 15% carried out an action i.e. clicking appointment page/store locator.

Drive awareness of the importance of early years children’s eye checks:

  • 559,093 people engaged with the book:
  • 109,093 visits to digital book (peaked at 9,000 daily visits in launch week) with 55% reading entire story
  • 450,000 books picked up in-store, making it 2nd most popular UK children’s book.
  • 7 million OTS from earned editorial and social including four Mail Online articles in first 24 hrs
  • 23% target audience penetration for online editorial; 12.6% for print
  • 86% of editorial appeared outside of traditional health pages
  • 66% of coverage delivered Boots eye health expertise and 66% Boots ‘feel good’ brand positioning
  • 100% positive message for Boots Opticians
  • 61% traffic from mobile devices – confirming mobile-first was correct approach to design and development.

Create talkability and inspired engagement in the campaign at and beyond launch:

  • Influencer earned social reached 17.4million with engagement rate of 5% for bloggers and <3.63% for celebrities
  • Owned social reached 1.4 million with 3.5% engagement rate
  • Peter Andre Facebook video received 32,000 views and 1,900 likes in first 24 hrs with figures rising at 100 views per second when first posted
  • Continued traffic (average 187 visits per day for last two months of 2016) to digital book even when paid and editorial support had ceased indicates campaign continued to inspire parents to talk about Zookeeper Zoe.