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Pharma Marketing Blog

A "Must Read" Blog for Insiders. --Wall Street Journal      "...often-entertaining, always informative..." --MedAdNews

Updated: 2017-10-17T11:38:44.059-04:00


Gottlieb to Head FDA: Pharma Breathes a Sigh of Relief


Merck has decided to dump its furry white vs black feline critters in its new direct-to-consumer advertising campaign for Belsomra saying that “the original ad served its purpose"; namely, breaking through the TV drug ad clutter to be noticed. Read the story below.

I have to ask if this is a trend now that each brand using mascots has already "broken through" AND the FDA is beginning to look more closely at the use of animated characters in ads (read "FDA Will Apply the 'Uncanny Valley' Hypothesis to Test the 'Eeriness' of Animated Characters in Drug Ads"). Or is it just Merck who got the jitters because those furry felines were particularly "eerie"?

DTC Advertising in the Era of High Drug Prices


TV and, to a lesser extent, print direct-to-consumer (DTC) drug ads have often been blamed for the high price of drugs. For example:

Pharma marketers are no doubt concerned that the current political atmosphere, in which both Republicans and Democrats are calling for lower drug prices, is having a negative effect on the effectiveness of their ads as consumers tune out the message (read, for example, “Pharma is Spending More on DTC Advertising But Its Effectiveness is Decreasing, Says New Survey”).

Bob Ehrlich, Chairman of DTC Perspectives, in a recent email titled "Times of Turmoil Ahead" expressed concern that DTC marketers may not adequately understand consumer sentiment viz-a-viz high drug prices:
"Most of us practicing the art and science of DTC have no control over political decisions on drug pricing and drug approval. That being said, it is imperative DTC marketers understand the popular sentiment consumers are exhibiting towards drug companies."
How does high drug prices affect the work product of DTC marketers and what does Ehrlich propose that DTC marketers do to address consumer concern regarding high drug prices?

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