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A Scottish mum, frustrated that nothing on the market would make her much loved heels fit comfortably decided to come up with her own patent pending solution and has now secured a major retailer listing at Superdrug stores across the United Kingdom.
Sticky Heelz founder, Laura Birrell, launched her first product to the market in December 2015, to test the concept. Her first product, an innovative dual system anti slip product is making women fall in love with their shoes again. Sticky Heelz make shoes a perfect fit and take the pain out of ill-fitting shoes that slip off or cause rubbing and blistering.
The problem Sticky Heelz solves is an issue for lots of women said Laura, “whenever I left the house I would go through the process of thinking what shoes go with my outfit; how far will I have to walk; when will the pain kick in; what will I need to take - spare shoes or plasters? Then what handbag will I need to accommodate that,” and many shoe lovers will confirm it, as Sticky Heelz research shows. Surveying 100 wearers Laura discovered only 18% were happy about the fit of their shoes, indicating a massive 72% were not. “The truth is”, says Laura, “manufacturers cannot make shoes to fit every woman exactly, and in many cases, only offer half sizes in limited brands.”
Since launch, Laura secured a Scotsedge investment award, she has developed further products, has produced marketing materials including TV advertising for the UK and USA market, where she recently secured a sales agent to manage sales, and has won the GBEA #GoDo Entrepreneur of the Year 2017 for Scotland and Northern Ireland.
However, a key milestone is securing the instore listing at Superdrug stores across the UK. Laura stated, “we undertook an independent survey with Tryit, as part of the testing process. We were selling online but we knew our product was a ‘distress’ purchase or an item that you would pick up in store when you were getting ready for an event, such as your eyelashes, nails, make up etc. So, one of the questions we asked was where customers would purchase our products – the result stated consumers would purchase in store from retailers specifically naming, Superdrug. So, while we had online sales activity, we knew we had to get our products in store. The process from product pitch to listing at Superdrug was just over 3 months, so we had to move quickly. We are delighted that Superdrug have listed both our anti-slip heel pads and our teardrop arch pads that reduce discomfort at the ball of the foot, and I am looking forward to working with Superdrug to build brand presence and hopefully bring new customers to the foot care section in store.”
A spokesperson for Superdrug commented “Our customers love keeping up with the latest fashions and trends and that can sometimes mean wearing shoes that aren’t always as comfortable as they’d like them to be. We’re excited to partner with Laura and help her to showcase the two Sticky Heelz products that’ll meet our customers’ needs."
“The day I decided I wouldn’t wait for someone to come up with a solution for my shoe problems was a game changer,” says Laura. She had her first child at 43 in 2013 and started trading at the end of 2015. “It is validation that having a child and getting ‘older’ does not mean your opportunities are limited, it is all about mindset, I sacrificed my salary, put myself out of my comfort zone and I have never looked back. I am excited about scaling my business globally and growing a brand”
About STICKY HEELZ
STICKY HEELZ is a company that has been set up to produce innovative foot care products to improve the fit and comfort of shoes. Sticky Heelz heel pads are patent pending and differ from existing heel pads to actually secure the foot to the back of the shoe. The company now has an invested business partner and we are shortly to release four new products that bring further innovation to off the shelf foot care.
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