CAMPAIGNS: Product launch - Sperm drug targets doctors
Client: Sigma-Tau Consumer Products
Client: Sigma-Tau Consumer Products
PR Team: Fleishman-Hillard (Washington, DC, and New York)
Campaign: Launch of proXeed, new dietary supplement to optimize sperm
Time Frame: Second quarter of 1999
Budget: dollars 250,000 (estimated)
To help couples having difficulty conceiving, Sigma-Tau Consumer
Products earlier this year introduced to the US a dietary supplement to
improve sperm quality. Thirty years of study had shown that the
supplement, proXeed, enhances the quality of sperm in terms of count,
size, shape, motility and speed. The launch represented the company’s
entry into the dietary supplement industry as well as into the
reproductive health market. Sigma-Tau Consumer Products is a division of
Sigma-Tau Pharmaceuticals, Italy’s premiere prescription drug
manufacturer, with US headquarters in Gaithersburg, MD.
Since proXeed is available through a toll-free number and web site and
not in health food stores, pharmacies or retail outlets, the objective
of the launch was to generate awareness and interest among healthcare
providers prior to its introduction to consumers. Ultimately, the
company wanted to educate the media and public about sperm quality and
Fleishman-Hillard began building the foundation for the product launch
in late 1998. FH worked with Sigma-Tau’s Web design company, ad agency
and research firm to focus on building alliances with the health
community and developing appropriate messages.
The agency worked with Sigma-Tau to develop a number of key messages,
including: poor sperm quality is a contributing factor in 40% of
couples’ difficulty in conceiving and proXeed does one thing well - it
optimizes sperm quality.
After creating a press kit, VNR and ANR, the team conducted a satellite
media tour that blended with collateral sales materials and a consumer
brochure. This was followed by the creation of a web site, advisory
meetings with infertility specialists and sales calls to physicians, and
advertising in leading medical journals.
To date, impressions achieved via TV, radio and print media have totaled
more than 53 million, Fleishman reports. The media coverage is credited
with gaining greater access to targeted healthcare audiences. Color
product shots in recent media such as The New York Times have increased
awareness among consumers.
Although sales figures were not available, Sigma-Tau had a significant
increase in web-site traffic, inquiries to its 800 phone number and
meetings with physicians.
New customers reportedly increased 240%, product orders rose 1,066% and
the quantity of product per order went up 127%.
Sigma-Tau will use its heightened awareness to increase discussions
about male infertility at upcoming medical conferences, such as those of
the American Society of Reproductive Medicine.
This article was first published on PR Week USA
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