BP hires LSA to pump up forecourt shop PR

BP UK’s retail division has hired its first retained PR agency to fuel its drive to become more customer focused. Corporate and political agency LSA will help BP publicise its programme of convenience shop openings.

BP UK’s retail division has hired its first retained PR agency to

fuel its drive to become more customer focused. Corporate and political

agency LSA will help BP publicise its programme of convenience shop

openings.



The agency was appointed without a pitch, on the back of the ad hoc work

it had done for the service station division, which has over 2,000 UK

outlets.



Duncan Blake, brand communications and promotion manager for BP UK, said

the company was aiming to shift consumer perception of BP service

stations, promoting them as a convenience shopping alternative.



BP have expanded some sites to include baby changing facilities, cash

machines, bakeries and fresh produce as part of the strategy to become

more customer focused. ’We know that people want to move towards

one-stop shopping,’ Blake explained.



Blake said that the decision to appoint a retained agency stemmed from

the recognition that BP UK Retail needed to have a thorough and well

thought out PR approach.



LSA also worked for BP Europe on the merger between Mobil and BP last

year.



LSA will work closely with BP’s press office on media relations, and

develop campaigns to support promotions and marketing initiatives.



BP announced the merger of its European operations with Mobil’s in

February 1996. The merger created a venture with sales of over pounds

1.2 billion and a 12 per cent share of the European fuel market,

challenging the market leaders Shell and Exxon.



Shell is investing pounds 16 million in marketing its Select forecourt

retail division, including the launch of a new TV ad campaign last week.

Select stores will also target ’top up’ and impulse buy shoppers.



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