Change-up in Headless Ads

January 15, 2009 at 8:37 pm | Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment
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The pharmaceutical industry sometimes presents us with some pretty strange approaches to communicating medical messages. When it comes to strange, though, you’ve really got to take your hat off – or maybe your whole head off – to the latest migraine medicine campaign from Treximet. 

Have you seen the TV spots? (Click here if you haven’t; as of this writing the first version is still showing on the brand’s Web site.) Think they’re creepy? Apparently some others do, too. Today I noticed that altered ads are airing; now instead of looking so realistic, there is a torn paper effect, as if the person were appearing on a two-dimensional sheet of paper and just the part with the head on it was torn out. No less creepy, in my opinion, because the person is still in motion, which implies life. Still, a change like this is costly, so the brand managers probably have some evidence to show that part of the target audience is being seriously turned off by the original ads.

Is it possible that the original ads were produced and aired with insufficient research into the target audience? If that was the problem, then was there possibly time to conduct tests on the new, “improved” spots? Or has Treximet rushed to tear out a bandage for the problem without making sure that the changes are heading the same direction that the audience would drive them?

It will be interesting to see the future of this campaign and this brand.


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