Prescription Drugs_ the Advertising Industry _ Use of Anti-Depressant Drugs by SupremeLord

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									Prescription Drugs

        The Effects of the
    Advertising Industry on the
       Awareness & Use of
      Anti-Depressant Drugs
• Introduction
• History of Anti-Depressants
• Trends
   – Consumers vs. Doctors
   – Marketing Trends
• Statistics
• Marketing Deconstruction
   – Example 1 - Lexapro
   – Example 2 - Zoloft
   – Example 3 - Effexor XR
• Forecasts
• Conclusion
•   With annual U.S. revenues of about $100 billion and worldwide revenues of $300
    billion, the pharmaceutical industry is one of the largest, most powerful, and most
    profitable businesses in the world, producing some of the most sophisticated marketing
    and advertising anywhere

•   Rules Change

     –   For years the pharmaceutical industry was allowed to market its drugs only to doctors.

     –   In 1981, the drug industry proposed that the FDA allow advertising directly to consumers,
         arguing the public shouldn’t be denied access to the "knowledge" provided by such marketing.
         Four years later, the FDA agreed to allow "direct-to-consumer" (DTC) advertising.

•   Drug Marketing Reborn

     –   Pharmaceutical advertising has grown to a new, pop culture-savvy level

     –   Car and pharmaceutical commercials use the same hooks -- popular music, good acting and
         lofty promises -- to hook consumers and reel them in. Both are almost always intended to look
         "cool“ and “feel good”

     –   Pharmaceutical advertisements are becoming increasingly common and increasingly effective

•   In this presentation, we will review the marketing tactics of the pharmaceutical industry,
    and the length they will go to seduce drug consumers, and rake staggering profits
    every year
   History of Anti-Depressants
• Before the discovery of antidepressant drugs, depression was
  commonly treated with barbiturates or shock treatment

• Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) and Tricyclic
  antidepressants were the first two classes of drugs used to treat
  major depression
    – Iproniazid, the first modern anti-depressant, was originally developed as
      an anti-tubercular drug in the early 1950's
    – Imipramine, the first among the tricyclic antidepressant, was originally
      developed in a search for drugs useful in the treatrement of

• Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) were developed to
  effectively work on the symptoms of depression without the side
  effects of the MAOIs or the tricyclics, such as constipation and
  blurred vision.
    – The first SSRI, fluoxetine (Prozac) was released in 1987
  Targeting consumers vs. doctors

Why do pharmaceutical companies spend billions of dollars
  on direct-to-consumer advertising when consumers can
     only obtain prescriptions for these drugs through a

      Doctors prescribe whatever the patient names

"Surveys reveal that when a patient comes into a doctor's
    office and requests a specific drug that he has seen
    advertised in the media, the doctor writes the exact
  prescription the patient requested more than 70 percent
                         of the time!"

Pharmaceutical companies are in business to make money
      Their goal: “The pursuit for maximum profit”
    Marketing trends
• In the 1990s, direct-to-consumer advertising increased at
  a compounded-annually rate of 30 percent

• From 1996 to 2000, totals rose from $791 million to nearly
  $2.5 billion

• Between 1999 and 2000, prescriptions for the 50 most
  heavily advertised drugs rose six times faster than
  prescriptions for all other drugs

• In 2000, $2.5 billion was spent on direct-to-consumer
  advertising. This number increased to over $3 billion in

• Pharmaceutical companies spend more on advertising
  than they spend in research and development of products
•   Expenditures for prescription drugs is growing faster than any other major healthcare
    sector. Americans are expected to spend over $500 billion on drugs this year

•   Prescription drugs account for 11% of total U.S. health care spending in 2002 and
    was a whopping $200.7 billion in 2005, almost 5 times more than the $40.3 billion
    spent in 1990

•   Antidepressant use has risen rapidly in most developed countries, driven by
    increased awareness of depression, and the availability and promotion of new
    antidepressant drugs

•   The average number of prescriptions per person in the United States increased from
    7.3 in 1992 to 10.4 in 2000

•   In 2006, nearly 25 million American adults were estimated to have experienced
    severe psychological distress

•   16 million American adults, or 7.2 percent of the population, reported experiencing a
    major depressive episode during the year prior

•   According to Wikipedia, a 2007 study purports that 25% of Americans were over-
    diagnosed with depression
Marketing Deconstruction

Example #1 - Lexapro
From Forest Laboratories™the manufacturers of Lexapro® and Celexa®
•   Target Audience
    Individuals, especially women, and doctors who may be prescribing
    antidepressant medications

•   Ad’s purpose
    To educate current individuals currently taking Celexa about a more effective
    and popular choice for a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI)
    antidepressant called Lexapro

•   What is implied
    The reference and comparisons to Celexa (Lexapro’s predecessor), implies
    that audience is educated and informed about the drugs

•   Claims
    The ad claims that Lexapro is the fastest growing SSRI in the US and is
    prescribed to over 13 million patients in the US.

•   Subtext or hidden story
    -No mention of side effects
    -No mention that it could take up to 6 to 8 weeks of treatment before seeing
    -No mention that this medication may not work for everyone
    Fowles Basic Appeals

• Need for affiliation – Illustrates two women confiding in
  each other. This especially plays on an individual’s
  fear of loneliness; which is likely a more susceptible
  fear in people diagnosed with depression.

• Need for aesthetic sensations – Displays women
  dressed in bright pastel colors. They are the focus of
  the advertisement with the background in less
  focus. The water that one woman is drinking and the
  salads on the table both look refreshing.

• Need to satisfy curiosity – Exhibits a variety of
  information including statistics, comparisons to other
  antidepressants, and safety information.
    Use of Color

• Yellow (worn by woman)– is associated with
  happiness, cheerful feelings, joy, intellect, and energy.

• Light Blue (worn by woman)– is associated with
  healing, health, tranquility and softness. Blue is
  considered beneficial to the mind and body.

• Dark Red logo – brings text and images to the
  foreground. It simulates people to want to make quick

• In addition, the logo makes use of similar shades of
  yellow and light blue as worn by the women.
Marketing Deconstruction

Example #2- Zoloft
•   Target Audience
    Any person who is experiencing symptoms of depression. This ad may
    appeal to a broad range of ages, from teens to older adults

•   Ad’s purpose
    To bring awareness about “Zoloft” in a simplified way by making use of
    animation. Also, to reinforce brand recognition

•   What is implied
    Indirectly, the maker of this ad wants to communicate to its audience that
    more information on Zoloft is available on the internet

•   Claims
    This ad claims that Zoloft is the #1 prescribed medication for depression
    and anxiety

•   Subtext or hidden story
    -No mention of side effects or any implication that may come about by
    using this medication
    -No mention that it could take several weeks of treatment before seeing
    -No mention that this medication may not work for everyone
Fowles basic appeals

• Need to nurture- By showing a cute, fragile-
  looking character, the reader is touched by a
  need to nurture, to care

• Need for reassurance-By showing a doctor in
  this ad attesting that “Zoloft has helped millions
  with depression” one can feel very positive of the
  medications’ effectiveness

• Need to satisfy curiosity-It is implied by this ad
  that more information about Zoloft is available
  online. Thus, this ad drives its audience to the
  product’s website
Use of color

The colors used in this ad are:

• White- In advertising, white is associated with coolness
  and cleanliness. It is used to suggest simplicity in high-tech
  products, and safety when promoting medical products

• Yellow (background)– is associated with happiness,
  cheerful feelings, joy, intellect, and energy

• Light Blue (background at the doctor’s office)- is
  associated with healing, health, tranquility and
  softness. Blue is considered beneficial to the mind and
  body. Light blue symbolizes that Zoloft is a healing
Marketing Deconstruction

Example #3- Effexor XR
• Ad description: This advertisement features a smiling
  woman looking directly at the reader. The ad also displays
  text highlighting a myth, reality, and general health
  information regarding the antidepressant Effexor XR

• Target Audience: Adult individuals, especially
  women. Given that this advertisement was taken from the
  magazine Psychology Today, it likely also targets
  psychology students, psychiatrists, and doctors

• Ad's purpose: To inform readers who feel they may be
  suffering from depression that they have options about
  their treatment – most notably the prescription, Effexor XR

• What is implied: The reader deserves a change (text: "the
  change you deserve"); notably to be happy like the woman
  portrayed and not depressed

• Subtext or hidden story: The advertisement lists that its
  readers have options, yet it only mentions one – Effexor
  XR prescription medication. It fails to mention that Effexor
  XR might not work for everyone
Fowles Basic Appeals

• Need for aesthetic sensations: By displaying a
  woman with perfect facial features – her hair is
  beautifully done, her smile is symmetrical, and
  her skin is flawless – this advertisement appeals
  to the audience’s aesthetic sensations

• Need to satisfy curiosity: This advertisement
  features text displaying a myth and a reality, in
  large bold letters at the top of the page. This
  appeals to people's desire for tidbits of trivial
Use of color
• Dark Red (text) – Red is a very emotionally
  intense color; often used to stimulate people to
  make quick decisions. The word "myth" is
  written in red to represent danger

• Yellow (text) – Yellow is often used to convey
  feelings of joy and happiness. In this
  advertisement, the word "reality" is written in this
  color: to represent hope and optimism

• Green (background) – The background of this
  advertisement is green. This color is often
  associated with safety, stability, and endurance.
  It reassures the audience that the product is
• Globally, the antidepressant market has seen extraordinary
  growth over the last decade. But, with few entrants, and a flood
  of patent expiries by 2009, the dynamics of this $16.9 billion
  market are set to undergo a major change

• Brand name antidepressant drugs are being challenged by their
  generic counterparts who are about 50-60% cheaper
    – Fluoxetine, the generic version of Prozac, became available in
      2001 and cost about 14 cents a pill as oppose to $2.22 for Prozac

• Since FDA warnings were issued, antidepressant prescription
  for children and teens has dropped dramatically making this
  drug market more vulnerable
• For these reasons antidepressant sales are expected to
  decrease by 21.5% to $13.5 billion by 2011
   The pharmaceutical industry has become one of the most profitable businesses in
    the world
       Direct to consumer marketing has enabled an explosion in pharmaceutical
       $300 billion world wide revenues
       Savvy marketing tactics are a pillar to the industries success, equal in scale to
       Marketing is geared to allure consumers by playing with their fears, emotions,
         and vulnerabilities

   Consumers beware
      Direct-to-consumer advertising is largely responsible for over-medication of
        prescription drugs
      Pharmaceuticals are responsible for 100,000 deaths/year; 750,000/ year if you
        include malpractice
      Deep pockets of the pharmaceutical industry influence scientists and
        academics through support of medical research, medical schools, and
        hospitals creating interlocking interests

   What to do
      Become more informed about pharmaceutical companies’ marketing tactics
      Be cautious of where we seek our information. Many informational websites
       are funded by these big giant companies.
      Advice: It’s always good to get a second opinion …. and always, listen to your
4.    [1] Prescription Drug Trends Fact Sheet - May 2007 Update
5.    [1] Prescription News
6.    [1] The Daily Texan Online
7.    [1] Katharine Greider's book, The Big Fix
8.    [1] Commercial Insight: Antidepressants - Sliding SSRI Revenues Inevitable,
      Published February 2004
10.   [1] Wellmark, BlueCross BlueSheild; Generic Findings Report;

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