Abandoning Specsavers’ marketing plan at the onset of coronavirus enabled the retailer to transform its business and change ineffective practices, according to Marketing and Ecommerce Director Chris Carter.

Carter, who was speaking at MAD//Fest x DMEXCO@home last month, said that the decision to ditch its 2020 marketing plan was a landmark moment for understanding how  the company’s marketing teams work together.

“In 4 weeks, we made more progress on how we work together as a team than we’d made in the past 4 years. We finally removed channel silos, introducing daily editorial meetings where we created content irrespective of the media channel we were going to execute on,” he said.

“Focusing on one idea elevated the performance of our team. It allowed us to uncover new stars. The team achieved more in spite of the unfamiliar remote working practices and added stress. They achieved it because the old rules were gone.”

Carter said this helped its marketers to innovate: “With this freedom, we saw teams and individuals innovate and problem solve more and more. They were doing this because they felt they had the permission to undo what we had done in the past.”

Over 80 speakers from brands including Diageo, Reckitt Benckiser, Moonpig, Fever-Tree, VICE, Direct Line and Just-Eat spoke at the event, which was a collaboration between MAD//Fest and DMEXCO.

We will be publishing video highlights over the coming weeks.