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5 June 2024

30

S10 - E7: I did go to Specsavers – Claire Bryant

After completing her degree in Arts Management at De Montfort University, Leicester, Claire was keen to take the comms aspect further and returned to her home town of Yeovil to become a reporter at the local newspaper. Following this, she moved to Screwfix where she worked in internal comms for the contact centre. Claire was then offered a 6-week secondment to the marketing team and never looked back!

Working on various marketing projects such as the launch of new concept stores, Claire worked in roles from direct marketing, international ecommerce and managing the local team to land more than 40 store openings a year. Claire names Screwfix as an incredibly supportive company where she was able to continue her studies and become qualified in both CIM Level 4 and Level 6.

After more than 8 years at Screwfix, Claire spent a year as the global brand manager at Powerbox, managing power tool brands across the UK and USA.

Following a relocation to Cheltenham, Claire joined Kohler Mira, working on the Mira Showers brand, where she worked with brands such as Amazon, B&Q and Plumbworld, producing customer friendly content and creating mutually beneficial promotions.

In October 2022, Claire was lucky to land her dream job at Specsavers as a marketing manager for the Broadcast Campaigns team, specifically working on contact lenses but also working on a project for new in store POS across the Specsavers estate. 

Claire is a member of the CIM and had held roles within the local CIM SW Group, where she was chair until June last year.

Outside of the day job, Claire enjoys volunteering at the local Sue Ryder hospice and is the chair of the local village football team, Twyning Tigers, where she also coaches the young Tiger Cubs. Claire loves to read, go to the theatre, and keep fit, but, most importantly, loves spending time with family and friends.

Podcast overview

On average, we spend around 90,000 hours of our life working. Life is too short, and it is so important that we spend those hours in a job, and indeed a company, where we are happy.

Getting to do what we love each day and being presented with lots of learning and development opportunities is key to us being fulfilled at work and making the most of our careers. Working in a business where I feel valued is incredibly important to me and I’m a big advocate for not staying in a job where you are not happy – I know this is easier said than done sometimes, but, trust me, there is always that perfect job out there for each person. I’m very lucky that I started my marketing career in such a business (Screwfix) and am now proud to have found ‘my place’ at Specsavers.

Podcast questions

  • You’ve had a varied career in marketing so far Claire. Please share your journey so far and how and why you got in to marketing
  • So you did go to Specsavers and have been there for over a year now. What’s so great about working for Specsavers? (Family run, supportive etc)
  • Why is Specsavers such a successful brand?
  • There are lots of great creative ideas that we see on billboards, TV, reactive marketing on social media and even vans stuck on bollards on the high street. What’s it like behind the scenes (BTS) in the marketing team?
  • What advice would you give to new marketers aspiring who want to carve out a career with well known brands like you have done?
Transcript

Asif Choudry (00:05):

Hello, and welcome to a new episode of the You’re my commsHERO podcast. And I’m your host, Asif Choudry. Today my guest is Claire Bryant. After completing her degree in arts management at Dement de Montfort University, Leicester Claire was keen to take the comms aspect further and return to her hometown of Ville to become a reporter at the local newspaper. Following this, she moved to screwfix, where she worked in internal comms for the contact center, and then Claire was then offered a six week secondment to the marketing team and never looked back. So Claire’s worked for some well-known brands, including Screwfix, Mira Showers, and in 2022, landed her dream job at Specsavers as a marketing manager for the broadcast campaigns team, specifically working on contact lenses, but also working on a project for new in-store point of sale across the Specsavers estate.

Asif Choudry (00:56):

Claire’s a member of the CIM, the Chartered Institute of Marketing, and has held roles within the local CIM Southwest Group where she was chair until June last year. And outside of the day job, Claire enjoys volunteering at the local Sue Ryder Hospice and is the chair of the local village football team at Twining Tigers. Hopefully I’ve said that correctly. Claire, you can correct me if I haven’t. Um, I wish you also coaches the young Tiger Cubs and Claire loves to read, go to the theater, keep fit, but most importantly, loves spending time with family and friends. So, Claire, thank you so much for joining us, and it’s a pleasure to welcome you on the podcast.

Claire Bryant (01:30):

Thank you for having me. Asif Yeah, it is twinning <laugh>, but everyone always, was it Twining twin? I

Asif Choudry (01:36):

Knew I said it wrong.

Claire Bryant (01:37):

<laugh>.

Asif Choudry (01:38):

Twining after the tea, after the

Claire Bryant (01:40):

Twinning, right. Excellent.

Asif Choudry (01:42):

Very good. And so you’re a coach as well then?

Claire Bryant (01:44):

Yeah, I, um, yeah, every Saturday morning I coach the little ones. So they’re, they range from anything between three and six years old, so they’re absolutely adorable and Oh, amazing. Yeah, it’s a really, it’s a really lovely thing to, uh, get involved with on a Saturday morning. Yeah. Brian’s up my morning is lovely.

Asif Choudry (02:01):

Are they good? Are are they good? Are they good listeners?

Claire Bryant (02:04):

Um, they, you know what, in general, they actually are, they’re very well behaved. Uh, sometimes we have to remind them to put their listening ears in, but they <laugh> they are very good. Bless them. Yeah. But yeah, it’s great fun.

Asif Choudry (02:17):

That’s great. Okay, so, um, in time, honest Fashion, we have a getting to Know You section. So I’m gonna, I’m gonna, I’m gonna hit you with three questions here, Claire. So the first one, what’s your most placed song on your Spotify playlist?

Claire Bryant (02:31):

Wow. Do you know what? It’s a toss up because I’m a huge fleet of Mac fan, so go your own way. It is one of my all time favorite songs, so that one a lot. Um, but also everybody Wants to Rule The World by Taste of Fear is also an absolute classic. It, isn’t it Classic. Yeah. Love that song. But I’m also gonna say I’m a bit of a swifty, so I do love Taylor Swift <laugh>, I’m not gonna lie. So there’s a lot of Taylor Swift gone to <laugh>.

Asif Choudry (02:56):

We had James Nan on from Eastlake Community Homes, and he’s, uh, a, a, a forced swifty on the school run. So, but it’s not, uh, it’s not his chosen, but he’s, he’s kind of being ingrained into that world as well. So <laugh>, uh, I, I’m, I’m in that club too. I’m in that club too. We can use the school run as an

Claire Bryant (03:14):

Excuse for, for being

Asif Choudry (03:16):

Closet swifties. Um, okay. That’s quite an interesting eclectic mix there. And, uh, uh, so tell us then, Claire, which famous person would you invite to dinner and why?

Claire Bryant (03:27):

Oh, it would definitely be Stevie Nicks. Absolutely. Yeah, she’s, yeah, absolutely incredible. The way she comes up with her songs and her songwriting is just, yeah, immense. So, and she’s had such an amazing career, but also, uh, yeah, I think she’s got a lot of stories to tell. So yeah, I think she’d be fascinated. They always say Never meet your heroes, but, you know. Yeah, she’d absolutely be my number one guest, <laugh> <laugh>.

Asif Choudry (03:50):

Oh, well, that’s amazing. And then finally, three words to describe you.

Claire Bryant (03:55):

Um, I think my work colleagues and my friends would all probably say the same. Um, so definitely positive, always like to see the positive in everything. Everything’s got a positive side. Absolutely. Yeah. Um, kind really important. Um, and loyal loyalty is huge thing for me. So yeah, those would be the top three, I think.

Asif Choudry (04:14):

Excellent. All really nice qualities to have. Mm-Hmm. <affirmative>. So we’ve, um, it’s, it’s brilliant to have you on because, you know, spec Save is such a fantastic brand, and I mentioned in the intro 2022, you landed your dream job at Spec Savers and the title of this podcast, it had to be, I did go to Spec Saver, so, you know, um, so the actual, just a bit of background in what, what we’re gonna be talking about. So on average, we spend around 90,000 hours of our life working. So life’s too short, and it’s so important that we spend those hours in a job and indeed a company where we are happy. So getting to do what we love each day and being presented with lots of learning and development opportunities is key to us being fulfilled at work and making the most of our, our careers.

Asif Choudry (04:58):

So working in a business where Claire feels valued is incredibly important to her, and she’s a big advocate for not staying in a job where you’re not happy. Uh, and she does on the flip side, appreciate that it’s easier said than done sometimes, but there’s always a perfect job out there for each person in Claire’s opinion. So, um, and she quite clearly is happy to promote the fact that she’s very lucky started her marketing career in such businesses, screw Fix, and now proud to have found her place at Specsavers. So we’re gonna unpack all that a little bit more with the first questions kicking off here, Claire. So you’ve had a varied career in marketing so far. So just for the listeners, please just share your journey so far on how and why you got into marketing. Yeah,

Claire Bryant (05:42):

Of course. Um, so I think like most people, um, and this is why I’m also a big advocate for, you know, if, if you are young and you’re finishing your GCSEs or your A Levels and you don’t know what to do, that’s absolutely fine, because I didn’t, I kind of fell into marketing, I guess, and it wasn’t until I was in my late twenties. And, um, so, you know, sometimes when I’ve been with the CIM and I’ve spoken to students previously, I’m always a big advocate for don’t worry if you don’t know what you, don’t what you want to do right now, because things will naturally happen. And, you know, you might be 30, 40 find before you find, you know, your ideal job, but it will be out there for you. Um, so I think sometimes it’s just good to kind of take the pressure off.

Claire Bryant (06:21):

And for me, I, I really, when I finished college, I did performing arts at college <laugh>, and, um, I, I didn’t want to really go into on stage stuff. Um, and, uh, and I just really didn’t know what I wanted to do. Um, and I took a year out between college, um, and going to university, and I worked at screwfix, um, just in the, in the contact center then, um, taking calls and orders over the phone. Um, and we even had fax orders back then, that’s shows you how long ago it was. Um, but it was, it was such a great place, it really was. And, and me and my friends all worked there. And, um, and during that year, I then got promoted to become a team leader. Um, so I did that for a few months before I went off to to university, did my course at university, which, um, was enjoyable, but again, wasn’t really sure when I came out what I wanted to do.

Claire Bryant (07:10):

Um, and, uh, then was very lucky to get a job, um, as a reporter, um, I’d done a bit of news journalism as my work experience whilst I was at uni. Um, and, uh, the local newspaper was looking for trainee report, so I thought, great. So I went and did that, but I just, um, I really enjoy, I did some lovely things like getting to be part of fundraising and, and reporting on the lovely things. Um, but sometimes, you know, if you have to do what they call a death knock, so if someone’s passed away and you have to go knock on their door and try and speak to the family, like it just wasn’t me. I really didn’t enjoy that side of it. Um, so I then got offered a job, um, in a comms role, um, which just wasn’t for me at all.

Claire Bryant (07:53):

And, and that’s again, my, my big advocacy for leaving a job if you don’t like it, I, I really didn’t, you know, which just wasn’t for me at the time. And I was very lucky then to go back to Screwfix, um, as a team leader or a team manager as they were then. Um, and then I moved into, um, comm’s role looking after, um, the communications within the contact center. Um, and I’m also a big believer in if you’ve got a great boss, you are really gonna succeed. Um, you know, they really do help you along, along the way and along with your journey. And I had a, an amazing lady I worked for then called Karen Webo. Um, and she was absolutely phenomenal in really pushing me, really giving me lots of opportunities. Um, and she was just absolutely fantastic. And so I was really lucky to work for her.

Claire Bryant (08:40):

And then, um, yeah, for day secondment, um, into marketing because we would liaise with the marketing teams to know, um, to be able to comms into the, um, into the contact center, you know, if we’re gonna expect a spike in calls because of some marketing activity. Um, and I thought, oh, I quite like this marketing lock. I’d like to know a bit more about this. Um, so I was really lucky to get offered a, a secondment for six weeks. Um, yeah. And that six weeks ended up being about six or seven more years I spent there, so <laugh>. Um, and absolutely loved it. I was really lucky in the fact that, you know, Screwfix and specs are very, very similar places, um, in the sense of the culture is just phenomenal. You know, everyone is just, yeah, it’s almost like <laugh>. They’ll only employ nice people, <laugh> because everyone is just genuinely nice and lovely and great to work with, supportive.

Claire Bryant (09:32):

Um, and yeah, Screwfix, they allowed me to do my CIM qualifications whilst I was working there, so really supported me through that. Um, made some friends for life, you know, and, and even when I left screwfix, because I, um, I found a, a promotion in another company. Um, you know, I remember the day I left, like my boss at the time, um, lovely lady called Wendy, she, like, she’d gone to the trouble of making a goodbye video, getting everyone to contribute to it, you know? And wow, I think it’s just, it’s how you treat your staff, you know, even up to that point when they’re leaving, you know, so much effort was made and to when I, when even when I left, you know, it was just such a fantastic business. Um, and then, yeah, then I went to work for, for Power Box. Um, so still keeping within tools, um, for, for a year before I then, um, had to make the move up to num to, uh, due to relocation.

Claire Bryant (10:26):

So, um, yeah, then I, I got a job at Myra Showers, um, worked there for a few years. Um, but, you know, in, uh, in my heart I always wanted to work at Specsavers because as a marketer, you cannot fault the marketing <laugh>, you know, that everyone knows the should of campaigns. Um, and, you know, I just thought, oh, just, I really want to really want to work for Spec Saber that that’s, you know, that’s where I want to be. Um, and I was really lucky to get, um, an interview, but do you know what? I didn’t get this job straight away, so it is really interesting. I, um, I actually applied for a job first with Spec Saber that came up, but it was for our, I didn’t realize at the time it was for our New Medica business. So, um, we have a business called New Medica, um, which is more focused on, um, eye operations, um, so cataracts, things like that.

Claire Bryant (11:15):

Um, and I got down to the final two and, and didn’t get the role. And, um, and I’m a big believer in, you know, things happen for a reason. Um, but you know, and rightly so, they, they chose the other person who had more medical experience, um, and as I say, rightly so. And then they said to me, but don’t worry, you know, we’d love to keep your, keep you on file. And you always think, oh yeah, you know, <laugh>. And then I think it was literally within like two or three weeks, I had a phone call back from them saying, we’ve got the perfect job for you. Um, would you like to come and interview? Amazing. Um, and yeah, it, it genuinely was the perfect job. And I knew when I first met, um, Sonya and Simone, who, uh, Simone is, is now my line manager, um, I knew I was gonna love it because you always think, you know, how big brand, what’s the marketing team going to be like, because you just don’t know, you know?

Claire Bryant (12:01):

Um, and they were so lovely and had such a lovely welcoming interview, you know? And then, um, and then I met, had a call with Vicki, our director, um, and again, just so lovely and got just such warm and welcoming, you know, vibes from everyone. It was just so nice. Um, and I remember kind of even like six months into the role, I was still thinking, well, what’s the catcher? ’cause this is all too good <laugh>, you know? And I’ve just, um, I’ve never worked somewhere where, well, as I say, you know, Screwfix is very similar, you know, everyone is just so lovely. And we have a big marketing team as you can imagine, but you soon get to know people and, um, and everyone’s really passionate about what they do, but so kind and supportive, you know, we we’re always supporting each other and sharing what we’ve done, and everyone is so, you know, just, I can’t get over how supportive everyone is of each other and congratulating each other on what they’ve done. And, you know, it’s just, it’s such a nice atmosphere and that really comes, you know, from the top.

Asif Choudry (13:07):

Yeah, no, that’s brilliant. It’s really nice kind of advert for the brands that you’ve worked with. And I’ve, I, I learned lots when I’m, um, speaking to and listening to the guests on the podcast. And the Death Knock is the one thing that, um, I will, that’s my new bit of knowledge for today. If the, so any journalists out there, I’m sure you know exactly what Claire’s mentioned, but that’s new to me, that one. So, um, but yeah, that might frighten anyone off that, to be honest with you. You’ve got to be, uh, um, uh, I don’t know. That’s quite, quite strange. That’s kind of, uh, I didn’t even know it was a thing, but, um, but there we go. We learn new stuff all the time, so, so really great. Uh, you know, the, the, um, indictment and what have you for, for Spec Savers and the brands you’ve worked with. So you did go to Spec Savers and have been there for over a year now. So you’ve mentioned some of those things that, you know, what’s so great about working for Spec Savers over and above what you’ve kind of mentioned already?

Claire Bryant (14:01):

I, I think, um, you know, the, the big thing is it’s family run business, um, and it’s still very much family run, you know, and that there are no plans to change that. You know, it’s a, Doug and Mary are still very much involved with the business, you know, and there was an article, um, you may have seen it just a couple of weeks ago, you know, where Mary spent most of her weekend writing out birthday cards because, you know, they send everyone a birthday card. Um, and you know, it’s not just printed, it’s genuinely written by, um, by, you know, Mary and Duggan. Yeah. You know, it’s those little things that make you feel so valued, and I think there’s nothing better than feeling valued in your job, you know? And I’ve never felt more valued in a role. Um, you know, and I have an absolutely amazing line manager as well, you know, and, um, they give you so many opportunities, you know, there’s lots of learning opportunities, um, and they’re really supportive of everything that you want to do. Um, and you can just see it around the business, you know, it’s, uh, everyone just works really well together. Um, and it’s just a great atmosphere to work in. And, you know, I work from home, um, most of the time, so I’ll go across to Guernsey on a regular basis to, to see the rest of my team and colleagues. Um, but working from home, I never, ever feel separated from the rest of the team. You know, we’re probably a good, okay,

Asif Choudry (15:25):

That’s

Claire Bryant (15:26):

Interesting. Yeah, we’re a good, probably 50 50 splits, um, of Homeworking versus in the office, um, in our team, but we absolutely still feel like one team. You know, the communication is so key whilst we’re there and, you know, and then when we do come over, you know, there’s always, uh, team, team gatherings and things we do as a team to really, you know, secure that team feeling. Um, but yeah, it, it’s really strange ’cause you think work with some of you working from home and some of you in the office, um, you’d feel that split. But to me, I just don’t get that at all. You know, we really feel like one team. Um, and, and same as the whole marketing team, really, you know, we’ll have, you know, marketing days where we all get together. Um, and it really is one team. It’s just, yeah. And as I say, the key thing is how supportive and friendly and kind everyone is to each other. And it’s just, I think when you’re in a space like that, you do your best work because you know you’re being supported, you know, you’re feeling valued, um, valued, and what a better space to work in really. And then you produce your best work ’cause you wanna to, yeah. That’s

Asif Choudry (16:29):

Great. Yeah, no, absolutely. And it’s interesting there the, about the handwritten birthday cards, you know, ’cause it would be so easy to just, well do nothing, send it via an email automated. ’cause you know, you can do all of that. And I know when I’ve spoken to the likes of Rachel Miller from all things I see before, and she’s mentioned, those sorts of touches within organizations are, are huge in terms of the impact it has for people. And somebody like myself who’s, you know, I’m a huge advocate of print, but I’m also, I understand its place within any kind of marketing mix. But with something like that, I think it’s just that genuine element from the business owners. It doesn’t, you know, it’s just, it’s a fantastic thing to hear, to be honest with you. And I hope it, um, more organizations should do that. ’cause that element of, especially through, uh, post pandemic remote working, that tangible connection with organizations has fundamentally changed forever.

Asif Choudry (17:24):

Mm-Hmm. <affirmative>. And those little touches are, um, worth their weight in gold because people do appreciate, wow, this is from the business owners and, you know, it’s really nice to do that. So it’s lovely to hear, and I can understand why. Um, you know, the question was, what’s so great about working for Specsavers? There’s lots of, um, you know, huge things you’ve mentioned then, and hopefully they’ll be inundated with lots more people who are, you know, applying for jobs. And I’m sure there’s an, uh, overcapacity for people when the jobs are, um, uh, promoted. So talking about Spec Savers as a marketing brand now. So our community is full of comms and marketing and PR professionals. So why is Spec Savers then such a successful brand from a marketing perspective?

Claire Bryant (18:08):

I think, um, it, it’s brave and we’re willing to try things. Um, you know, that might be slightly tongue in cheek. Um, you know, we’ve built that wit around our brand and with the whole of campaigns. Yeah. You know, um, and I think some of them we can be quite brave in the things that we’re doing. Um, but the good news is people do see the funny side <laugh>. Um, and, uh, yes. And again, I think it’s because of the team behind it. You know, we have, we have our own, um, in-house agencies, Specsavers Creative, um, so, you know, we work really closely with them and they are so intertwined with the brand, um, that, you know, we as say, we work really closely with them, they get the brand, um, because they are part of it. Um, and I think that works really well.

Claire Bryant (18:59):

Um, yeah. And as I say, we’re not afraid to try new things, um, or, you know, be brave around some of the things that we try. Um, yeah. And, and you know, we’ve, we are really lucky that we’ve got something like should have that has sort of come into, you know, the everyday, everyday vocabulary really. I was in, um, I was in a shop the other day and, um, a man said to his wife, oh, he should have gone to Spec Savers because she, she didn’t see something. And, uh, and it, and it’s surprising actually how much you hear that. That’s brilliant. Yeah. Yeah. And um, yeah, I could imagine, and honestly, if I had a pound for when I, when I knew I was coming to Specsavers, if I had a pound for every time someone said to me, you know, oh, you should have gone to Specsavers and you are <laugh>.

Claire Bryant (19:40):

You know, it’s just, it’s just absolutely. So, you know, so as a brand to have that, you know, that’s brilliant. You know, it’s worth its weight in gold. Um, and I think, like I say, having our creative team, but also we can put our inputs in as marketers, you know, it’s not just a brief into the creative team and they come back to us, you know, we really kind of work together and they take on board our ideas and, and we have some great agencies also that we work with, um, for our media. And, uh, yeah. So we, and we see those agencies as an absolute extension of our marketing team. You know, they’re not just an agency that we work with, they’re an absolute extension of our marketing team. And, um, and I think that makes it work because we allow them into the brand, like they know the brand so well.

Claire Bryant (20:28):

Um, and then that really helps when you are thinking about media plans and how it’s gonna work. Um, so again, it is that whole team spirit that comes from behind it as well, that makes it, that successful. Um, and the camaraderie as well around us all, you know, we all help each other out. Um, you know, we might, my focus, um, generally in the day-to-Day is contact lenses, you know, but I’ve also been given other opportunities to look at in-store point of sale, how we work with our customers around that. So, you know, as I say, I think we’re, we’re always willing to try new things, give people opportunities, um, and, and as I say, it’s the people as well behind that, that then makes that so successful.

Asif Choudry (21:08):

Yeah, I definitely, it’s very much a standout brand in terms of that whole, um, optical landscape because do you think we, um, the competitors look to, because it’s quite hard to get to that space now, that the should have campaign is like kind of synonymous with Spec Savers and that, that whole creative end, I’m, I’m sure the other brands will look on, uh, an envy and maybe somebody from the other brands will come onto the podcast, drop us a line and let’s get you on and let’s, let’s talk marketing tactics and competitive nature. So there’s lots of creative ideas that we see from Spec Savers on billboards, tv, reactive marketing on social media when there’s a, a, a dodgy football decision, and then the obvious should look on the spec savers. There’s been loads of great stuff. And, and more recently, um, vans stuck on bollards on the High street, which obviously went viral. So I think, you know, we all love now this trend of BTF behind the scenes. What’s it like behind the scenes then in the marketing team? Give us some of that insight, Claire, that you, that you’re able to share with us. Well,

Claire Bryant (22:13):

You know what, we, we’ve got an amazing PR and social team, um, Joe Osborne and Lisa Hill. We’ve got some absolutely phenomenal people that, that run and are in RPR and social teams. Um, and we’re very fortunate that we get a lot of opportunities to do some of the things that we’re able to do, um, behind the scenes. You know, it’s really, and I sound like a broken record, but you know, in my <laugh> it’s true. It’s just, it’s a great sense of teamwork, team atmosphere. We’re always sharing what we’re doing. Um, you know, we have a, uh, a marketing huddle every week, and it’s a great space to, for everyone to share what we’re doing from PR to CRM, um, to our social, to working with different people. You know, we’ve just, um, PR and social team have just won some more awards from the Rick Hasley, um, Rick Hasley piece that we did around hearing loss, um, and the change lyrics to never gonna give you up, which was absolutely fantastic. Um,

Asif Choudry (23:18):

Amazing. Congratulations.

Claire Bryant (23:20):

Yeah, they, yeah, I mean, we’re just really lucky to have the people that we have, um, and who are brave enough to make the decisions that we do. Um, but behind the scenes it’s just really, it’s just a lot of marketers with the same mindset wanting to do the best for the business, and absolutely loving what they do. Um, you know, and it’s just a real sense of camaraderie. Um, and yeah, just going for it really, you know, and it’s, the atmosphere is great, um, because sometimes you might think, oh, you know, is it, is it really crazy busy marketing space and everyone’s running around and, but no, everyone’s just focused getting on with it, you know, and such a supportive atmosphere, you know? Um, so yeah, it’s just, there’s no kind of <laugh>, it’s hard, you know, the,

Asif Choudry (24:12):

I suppose it’s an, an environment that fosters obviously creativity and how

Claire Bryant (24:15):

Absolutely

Asif Choudry (24:16):

You’ve done that there with everybody being bold and that culture of, um, that, I mean, that fosters creativity in itself, doesn’t it? The fact that people have got the opportunity to just try new stuff and it doesn’t look like there’s, you know, just, there’s been lots of the reactive marketing, which has been very tongue in cheek. So I think that set the precedent for, for people to be, because you can feel comfortable in that environment that you can try new stuff, because some of that’s been, um, uh, like you say, taken in the right spirit from the consumers Yeah. And the, and the public. And, um, so that, that would always help in creating that culture. So, no, I appreciate that, you know, ’cause there’ll be lots of people who will want to emulate that same kind of, um, culture within creativity, which fosters and harnesses creativity. So it’s good to hear that it’s just, you know, normal people in there because people have this kind of taboo view or just this, this, you know, probably misconception of, um, it’s just a room full of creatives, but the marketers themselves, um, can come up with lots of creative ideas. Maybe they just haven’t got the environment or the culture to be able to express those ideas, even if they did have them. So I think that’s probably one key takeaway that I’d probably suggest, um, that, you know, other marketers would relish that opportunity. So. Yeah,

Claire Bryant (25:38):

Absolutely. And I think, um, sorry. So it’s, um, it’s a real kind of team spirit, but everyone is really working hard and everyone is really good at what they do. So that then spills out because, you know, you see everyone else, you know, working hard on what they do doing really well, and that then, you know, really pushes you on to always want to do your best. And, and you, you know, everyone just works so hard. But there’s also a real sense of, you know, work-life balance specs over is a really hot on that you know’s, a really strong worklife balance. And, um, and that’s really important also. Um, so yeah, it just, the, the business just gets it just right. We’re very lucky to work here.

Asif Choudry (26:22):

Yeah. No, that’s great. And we genuinely, it’s, it’s really nice to have that behind the scenes insight, uh, uh, as to what happens at such a successful brand. So, Claire, to wrap up these questions and what advice would you give to new marketers aspiring, who want to carve out a career with well-known brands like you’ve done yourself? Yeah,

Claire Bryant (26:40):

I think for me it’s about go somewhere where they’re going to value you. And somewhere where there are lots of opportunities to learn. I’m a huge advocate for continued learning. You’ve, you know, no one knows everything, so we’ve got to continue learning all the time. And especially in marketing, there’s always new things coming in to learn about. Yeah. Um, so always choose, yes, you are going for the interview, but also at the same time you are, you know, you are sussing out that brand to see if you want to work for them. Um, so always find out what the learning and development opportunities are, um, and always find out, you know, what’s the culture of the business, you know, that’s a huge thing. Um, and, you know, and a good business should be able to say, you know, this is our culture, this is our values, this is what we stand for. And just always make sure that your values and your expectations of culture align with that business. Um, you know, and with that you can’t go far wrong.

Asif Choudry (27:38):

Yeah, no, absolutely. It’s really nice advice there for people, and I’m sure, um, people will take that up. So, you know, it’s been really fascinating and it’s been great that the Commer community has access to, um, yourself and the, uh, and to be able to give us some insight from such a big brand and a well-known brand as well. So why would you say then, Claire, why is Comms Hero important to you, and would you recommend people working in comms and marketing to be part of the community?

Claire Bryant (28:02):

Yeah, do you know what, for me, and also, and you can see this by, you know, all the different people you’ve had in your previous podcast and looking at the blogs, um, and what you stand for, comms Hero is so important because it’s for everyone. They’re so, you know, there’s quite a lot of, um, uh, groups that come together, which are just for directors or just for heads off, or just for senior marketers, you know, and there’s, there’s not a lot out there, which is for everyone and, you know, and everyone being treated the same. So that’s what I think is really important about Comms Hero, um, and why people should sign up to it and get involved because it is something for everyone. It’s a community for everyone, you know, it’s not just for those who are in senior roles or it’s not just something for those who are just starting out in their careers. It really is for everyone. Um, so for me, that, that’s why it stands out and that’s why it’s so important.

Asif Choudry (28:59):

Well, thank you for that. And I think that diversity is important for us because it’s just an organic thing. Um, because we were very keen from the beginning, it’s our 10th anniversary this year, and we’ve always been keen right from the outset not to, um, create an environment which was exclusive. Um, and that was just a happy accident. It wasn’t because of any, um, diversity strategy or anything like that. I think it’s a natural thing that’s happened because the comms and marketing profession is, um, uh, there are different roles within there, different seniority, uh, different paths to get into the, uh, profession itself. And there’s learnings from everyone from all of that, you know? So it’s important to create an environment. So it’s really nice that you’ve said that, and we really appreciate it. So the community is important and connection is important. So, um, uh, I, as with all guests, I’d love for the listeners to connect, um, with you, Claire, and uh, where will they find you? What’s the best place to go to, to, to connect

Claire Bryant (29:54):

You? Yeah, LinkedIn, it’s probably the best place. Um, it strangely <laugh> as a marketer, I’m not a huge social media person. Um, so yeah, so, uh, LinkedIn, I’m always available on LinkedIn, so yeah, feel free to come and connect and yeah, LinkedIn is best.

Asif Choudry (30:12):

It’s quite interesting that there’s a lot of people, actually marketers who, um, aren’t on socials. And I’ve interviewed somebody else this week who said exactly the same thing, but that’s not a bad thing because it’s somewhere. It’s like, I suppose it’s like spending 24 7 in the office. Yeah. You know, you just wouldn’t do that because you need time away from that. Suppose if it’s your profession. So, um, but it’s interesting that, so, um, thank you and please connect with Claire and, uh, um, and get some of those fascinating insights into the world of Spec Savers. Uh, you’ll find this podcast on Spotify, apple, uh, and your chosen platform also on our website com zero.com. You can follow us on Twitter, uh, still calling it that, uh, or x at com zero. And if you do listen on Apple or Spotify, please do leave a rating and review. That’s really important to us to get your feedback and, um, hit the follow and subscribe button so you can get access to all the new episodes. So Claire, it’s been absolutely fascinating and know an episode that people will really enjoy because hearing from behind the scenes on Spec Savers doesn’t happen that often. So thank you so much for coming on and sharing your, um, insight with me. Yeah,

Claire Bryant (31:21):

No, thanks for having me. It’s been great fun. Thanks.

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