Gotham Unites Bausch & Lomb Brands

NEW YORK Bausch & Lomb this week is launching a $20 million-plus campaign from Gotham that brings together top sellers like ReNu and new products like Ocuvite PreserVision under a strong company brand.

The campaign’s first two spots begin airing today and promote ReNu contact lens solution and Ocuvite PreserVision, a vitamin intended to halt the effects of macular degeneration. Both end with the Bausch & Lomb logo and the company’s new tagline, “Preserving vision. Enhancing life.”

“It is our first effort to bring all of our various products all under a single umbrella,” said Robert Moore, Bausch & Lomb’s vice president of marketing in the Americas.

Before hiring Gotham of New York in October, the eye-care company used several agencies to promote its many brands, Moore said. With its 150th anniversary approaching, the client wants to reposition itself as a company known for its focus on eye-care products and technology, he said.

In one premiere spot, a mother and daughter browse through an art fair reflecting on the devastation they felt when the mother was diagnosed with macular degeneration. Through her use of Ocuvite PreserVision, she is offered a chance to slow vision loss and continue enjoying the art she loves. In another, a 20-something woman is dismayed by her younger sister’s poor treatment of her contact lenses. Through a series of quick video cuts, we see the younger sister dropping her contacts on the floor, spitting on them and not cleaning her lenses properly. The older sister reminds her sibling, “It’s not just about your contacts, it’s about your eyes.”

The spots are a combination of corporate statement, public service announcement and product advertising, said Sheri Baron, president of Gotham. In addition to selling its products, the company wants to raise eye-care standards and associate its name with those high standards, she said.

Two new spots, touting the company’s laser surgery technology and multi-focal contact lenses, will go into production this month. Ad spending for the second wave of commercials has not been determined, but spending on the entire campaign will exceed the $20 million in media supporting the first two ads, Baron said.

The ads will air on ABC, NBC, CBS and Fox, as well as on cable networks including USA, TLC, A&E, Lifetime and CNN. Bausch & Lomb spent $20 million on ads last year and $3 million in 2001, according to CMR.