Speedo calls in Iris PR to refocus as lifestyle brand

Speedo has hired agency support in a bid to be seen as more than just a sports brand.

Speedo: wants to move from the back pages to the front
Speedo: wants to move from the back pages to the front

Speedo has charged Iris PR with refocusing Speedo as a lifestyle choice and moving the brand from the back pages to the front.

The appointment sees the swimming brand part with five-year incumbent Brandnation, which pulled out of the pitch process.

Sally Polak, head of marketing for Speedo UK, acknowledged that the brand would be high profile during London 2012 through its sponsorship of British Swimming and Olympic gold medallist Rebecca Adlington, but said that the brand wanted to go beyond this.

She said: ‘We want to inspire everyone to get into the pool, not just the professional swimmers.

‘The task for Iris will be to get Speedo talked about outside of a professional sporting context, so moving us from back of paper to front.

‘This is the start of a reappraisal job with both the media and consumers, which will encourage more people to see the Speedo brand as being relevant to them whatever their swim needs or ability, particularly mums and families who can really benefit from our swim expertise and product quality.’  

Iris PR will handle Speedo’s consumer PR as well as promoting the brand’s range of lifestyle products, which include a female shape range named Sculpture, a learn-to-swim range for children and various accessories designed to make swimming more effective and fun.

Iris will work on campaigns incorporating media relations, social media and traditional digital media as well as helping drive product PR.  

The agency will also use sponsored swimmers and promotional activity around swimming events to drive awareness of the brand and its product ranges.

Laura Weston, managing partner of Iris PR, said: ‘We have an opportunity with Speedo to take its brand heritage in producing world-class swimwear and translate that for the lifestyle consumer. We need to help consumers understand the benefits Speedo can bring to those who swim just for fitness or fun.’

The account will be headed up by group account director Kathryn Smith and senior account director Fran Derry.

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