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Make it obvious

The message for urinary incontinence drugs needs to be spelt out for GPs, with clear branding and copy needed when advertising treatments for the condition.

The message for urinary incontinence drugs needs to be spelt out for GPs

Urinary incontinence in women has a significant negative impact on the lives of the sufferers, potentially causing social isolation and limiting their daily activities. Despite increased media attention due to the launch and re-launch of a number of products in this area, women suffering from accidental leaks often feel acutely embarrassed about their condition and generally suffer in silence.

They rarely realise that they are not the only ones to experience involuntary urine loss and, because denial is commonplace, these women prefer to cope by using pads and planning their daily life around toilet use. For most GPs, the condition remains less of a priority when compared with other diseases, such as diabetes.

This month we looked at three treatments for incontinence in women, and assessed the effectiveness of the advertising campaigns amongst GPs. We asked 205 GPs whether they remembered seeing the ads for Yentreve, Detrusitol and Lyrinel XL.

Yentreve was the first drug approved for moderate-to-severe stress urinary incontinence. It is co-promoted by Lilly and Boehringer Ingelheim and has recently launched in Europe - in the UK, Germany and Sweden. Detrusitol is marketed by Pharmacia for the treatment of symptoms of urgent unstable bladder conditions; for example needing to rush to the toilet without much in the way of warning.

Finally, we tested Lyrinel XL (formerly Ditropan XL until 2003), a simple, once-daily treatment for urinary incontinence, urgency and frequency in patients with an unstable bladder condition. Janssen-Cilag, a Johnson & Johnson company, markets the brand in the UK.

We asked GPs to look at ads for these products both unbranded and then branded to find out if they could identify the correct therapy area for the drug. Furthermore, GPs were asked about the stopping power of the ads.

Pick of the bunch

In the unbranded tests, Detrusitol was far and away the most recognised ad, with 62 per cent of GPs saying they recalled seeing it. The campaign for Detrusitol shows an elderly lady standing with her family at a font in a church. She wears a pained expression on her face (see above). When the strapline is added, the complete meaning is revealed - 'I wish they'd chosen a shorter name, I've got to go!'

However, as the message is quite clear even without the strapline, it could be why the ad performed better than the others in the unbranded recall tests. It was also the ad which GPs were more likely to attribute to the right brand and therapy area. When asked: 'Which product do you think is being advertised?', more than 6 in 10 GPs recognised the ad was for Detrusitol and at least 20 per cent identified the correct therapy area.

Too discreet?

In contrast, the unbranded executions for Yentreve and Lyrinel did not perform as well. Some 72 per cent of GPs did not remember the Yentreve ad while almost 80 per cent did not recall seeing Lyrinel. The ad for Yentreve features a photo pinned to a wall of a group of young women drinking and out having fun.

Yet without both branding and copy, it may be more difficult to guess what product the ad is promoting. The headline reads, 'LOST - Meeting up after work, going dancing, jumping into taxis and all the laughter that only good friends can provide'. It is discreet, and may not be providing sufficient clues as to the product's therapy area.

Just 16 per cent of GPs said that the ad was for Yentreve in the unbranded tests and a further 9 per cent identified the therapy area only.

The Lyrinel ad features a woman getting off a train and a train ticket. Without the copy, it is not very clear what the ad is for. The straplines help - the GP can see that the train ticket is a 'ticket towards dryness' and the product works by 'Improving the standard of bladder control'.

Fourteen per cent of GPs said the ad was for Lyrinel while a further 5 per cent thought it was for 'Lyronex'. Some 16 per cent correctly identified the therapy area but not the brand name.

When the branding on each ad was revealed, 69 per cent of respondents said they had seen the Detrusitol ad, while 34 per cent of doctors could remember seeing Yentreve advertised and 26 per cent remembered seeing Lyrinel.  

Added extras

When it comes to the stopping power of an advert, GfK Martin Hamblin uses the key measures of interest and impact to evaluate its success. The Detrusitol ad performed better than those for Yentreve and Lyrinel on both counts and also out-performed the average of five other ads held in the database for products for urinary incontinence. Yentreve and Lyrinel both underperformed with regard to impact and interest, with the latter coming bottom of the heap. It appears that for this therapy area, the best remembered messages are some of the most obvious.

The survey

The data for gp monitor was gathered using Generator, the monthly omnibus from GfK Martin Hamblin. It asked 205 GPs, representative of the UK population, whether they remembered seeing the advertisements for: Yentreve, Detrusitol and Lyrinel XL.

GPs were asked to look at both unbranded and branded ads for these products and try to identify the therapy area for the drug. We also tested the ads for stopping power using the MARS (Media Advertising Rating System) database for the treatment of incontinence.

For more information, contact Mo Rice on 020 7340 0504 mo.rice@gfkmh.com or Julie McGuigan on 020 7340 0534 julie.mcguigan@gfkmh.com

the therapy area for the drug. We also tested the ads for stopping power using the MARS (Media Advertising Rating System) database for the treatment of incontinence.

For more information, contact Mo Rice on 020 7340 0504 mo.rice@gfkmh.com or Julie McGuigan on 020 7340 0534 julie.mcguigan@gfkmh.com

2nd September 2008

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