In the Netherlands, two thirds of school children under the age of 12 walk or cycle to school on a daily basis. During a campaign at the start of the 2017/18 school year, Pearle Netherlands highlighted the importance of proper eye care with the return of children back to school. This initiative sought to raise awareness about the importance of eye care, not just in helping fulfil a child’s potential in the classroom but also to keep them safe during the journey to school and back.
A comprehensive survey of approximately 1,000 parents, with children up to 12 years old, found that only 8% consider safety to be an important reason for conducting regular eye health checks on children. Experts believe that poor vision in children combined with little experience in traffic, creates life-threatening situations. Regular eye checks are therefore a necessity to ensure fewer accidents on the street.
Seeking to address these awareness gaps in the market, Pearle kicked off the campaign with a cycling eye test for children on their first day of school. The event received widespread attention in the media and positive coverage by bloggers and social media influencers. The study showed that around 30% of the participating children had undetected vision abnormality, mostly short-sightedness or long-sightedness.
As an extra incentive and to create awareness, Pearle gave away a special school bag full of fun stickers that kids can put on street objects and then post their pictures on social media. The initiative resulted in increased eye checks and a jump in the sale of children's glasses compared to 2016, as well as positive brand awareness for Pearle.