The Body Shop picks U.K. agency for first campaign

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LONDON -- The Body Shop, the cosmetics retailer which began with one shop on Britain's south coast 21 years ago and now has almost 1500 stores in 46 countries, is to embark on its first advertising in the U.K.

The Littlehampton-based company, which markets itself on an ethical platform and which has always scorned traditional advertising, has hired London agency Bean Andrews Norways Cramphorn "to reinforce its unique position and voice on the cosmetics industry and socially responsible business." The move follows a search spanning several months.

Previously, the Body Shop had employed fellow London agency St Luke's as a strategic planning consultant for two years, but no ads emerged.

The company has been hit in the 90s by competition and high profile press and TV reports that alleged its ethical trading stance was not all it appeared to be.

"We've got something to say about selling products that promote well being and celebrate our customers rather than debase them," says Body Shop founder Anita Roddick of BANC's appointment. "We're not afraid to campaign on human rights as well as talk about our products. We've resisted the ordinary for 21 years, why stop now?"

Robert Bean, chairman of BANC says the agency will be "doing [its] best to spread the word in ways even they didn't think of." Body Shop Marketing Director Sandra Pickering points to the agency's "innovative" work for other retailers as a reason for its selection.

BANC's clients include international clothing and textile retailer Laura Ashley, Liberty, the famous London store, and the New Covent Garden Soup Company, an entrepreneurial fresh soup firm in the U.K.

Copyright March 1997, Crain Communications Inc.

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