Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Sex Sells

Oral contraceptives, more commonly referred to as “the pill," are used to prevent pregnancy by changing estrogen levels. Oral contraceptives accounted for approximately $4.3 billion in revenue dating back to 2006, 74.7% of which were within the U.S. The pill is considered a lifestyle drug, making marketing campaigns vital to the success of sales of the drug. How is this industry marketing to consumers around the world and handling the topic of sex?

Below are three videos from Asia, India, and the US. While watching the videos notice the ages of the actors, the reasons for taking the pill, and the use of humor!
Can more be done to advertise in these and other countries? How can companies use advertising to break into more conservative countries where the topic of sex is taboo?




  1. I had to laugh at these clips and how different each one was in their message. I felt the US ad was trying to prevent a law suit by revealing all the side effects of the pill. On the other hand, I could not relate to Asia or India. Promotions are not based on how much attention a woman gives her husband and India should focus more on the consequences of having a child at a young age, not weight gain.

  2. I just want to agree with what Kristin said. But I also wanted to give my two cents here.

    Medicines that don't treat actual "disease states", (big ones such as erectile dysfunction, baldness, stress) are still huge money makers. I think this is because populations are realizing the importance of self-preservation, well-being, and the benefits that the drugs can have on their lives. The lifestyle area is the fastest growing area in pharmaceuticals, driven by drugs such as Viagra (sildenafil; Pfizer Inc), Propecia (finasteride; Merck & Co Inc), Xenical (orlistat; F Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd), among others. In addition, the increased middle class, globally, has more money to spend on drugs that can benefit their daily lives. Drug companies already have a golden ticket in many of these products, as their benefits sell themselves. Otherwise, its just about communicating how much the patient's life will change without being exposed to harmful side-effects.

    Nice topic, Beth!

  3. The video for Asia was made to focus on the young teenagers in contrast to US and India. In Asia, with the YAZ advertisement, they are trying to educate how young individuals ought to avert pregnancy; as for the US the product YAZ primarily stresses about the side effects of the pill instead of its actual effects. It was also interesting to watch how the women was telling her friends about seeking physician's attention to make sure there were no medical failures, which seemed like was worrying YAZ to get a bad name if someone wiht pre-existing condition took the pill. In India, the advertising goal for the YAZ product was a bit confusing, as the commercial was trying to teach the audience when to have children, according to the video, after establishment of a stable "economy" in the household would be the right time. This was my impression.