Live life to the max… with OTCs

A recent CVS pharmacy survey has shown that over a quarter of Americans who get a flu shot every year or are planning to get one this year (60% of all respondents) cited the possibility of missing out on important life events such as birthdays and family gatherings as the reason for doing so.

While recent high unemployment in Southern Europe has led many cold & flu marketers to underline the importance of not skipping work through illness, not missing out on the good times and living life to the max is just as consistent a theme in European OTC ads as in the US.

Nicholas Hall’s Worldwide Marketing Award Winner way back in 2012 was Reckitt Benckiser, for its Don’t Lose A Day campaign backing Lemsip, Strepsils and Meltus brands, which highlighted the enjoyment of everyday activities unabated by cold & flu, from Tuesday dance classes to Friday night dates.

More recently, RB backed its Lemsip Cough Max entry with UK ads showing a mountain climber unable to make it to the summit owing cough, only to be boosted to the top with the aid of the Lemsip remedy.

Ricola used a slightly more surreal angle on the theme with its global Chrüterchraft (literally “the power of herbs”) campaign last year – also shown in the US – featuring naked ramblers and Nordic opera singers to emphasise Ricola’s ability to refresh, soothe, liberate and inspire.

Bayer’s more low-key TV ads for Aspirin Complex in 2014 leant on a Forsa survey showing that most Germans preferred to stay in bed when suffering from cold & flu, with the ads featuring a man miserably wandering around town in a duvet, featuring the tagline, “Live life to the full despite cold”.

Might CVS’ campaign prompt cold & flu marketers to focus their creativity more on individual “life events” rather than everyday ones? Or to further highlight the efficacy and relative convenience of tablets, syrups and lozenges as opposed to CVS syringes?

If you’ve launched an advertising campaign from 1st February 2015 or are planning to launch one before 31st January 2016, you could be up for a Nicholas Hall Marketing Award, which reward innovation and creativity throughout the consumer healthcare industry. For details on how to enter, contact jennifer.odonnell@NicholasHall.com.

For a full review of recent A+P campaigns for cold & flu brands in leading markets, why not pick up a copy of our Cough, Cold & Allergy report? Contact nino.hunter@NicholasHall.com for details on content & pricing.

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