June 7 sees the start of the most concentrated promotional drive of Spar's 50 years of trading in the UK. The Golden Deals promotion will offer a series of discounts throughout the summer in the group's 2,600 affiliated stores and will be backed with TV and press advertising, pos support and consumer leaflets.
Spar's 50th year in the UK coincides with the group's 75th anniversary internationally, but while the milestone is the catalyst for the concentrated six-week burst of activity, Spar UK marketing director Susan Darbyshire is quick to point out that the focus is all about the future rather than any celebration of past glories.
"The point is to help retailers drive sales and we have invested heavily to support them in this," she told C-Store. "It will enable us to put Spar at the centre of attention of millions of customers.
"The 50th anniversary is the perfect opportunity to remind shoppers of our 'There For You' proposition. It's about being responsive to the local community, and helping the retailer to shape their store to the community it serves."
The airwaves will be full of the Spar brand and its 'There For You' slogan in the coming weeks, with TV advertising slots in Coronation Street, Emmerdale and Who Wants To Be A Millionaire predicted to reach 84% of the nation's housewives. An estimated 21.3m people are expected to see the £1.2m campaign at least five times.
National newspaper advertising is also targeted to reach more than one third of the UK population, and stores have already taken delivery of hanging signs, balloons, bunting and banners.
Darbyshire added that the campaign has captured the imagination of retailers who are organising their own events and promotions.
Spar has also set itself the target of raising £1m for charity by the end of its 50th year. Its chosen cause is NSPCC Children First and the fundraising drive includes a £50 challenge, in which each store is given ideas to raise that amount.