Embracing Direct-to-Consumer Advertising by Focusing on Stopping Medications

This is a re-post from GeriPal – Geriatrics and Palliative Care Blog, you can also read the article at GeriPal and check out some of their other posts.

Embracing Direct-to-Consumer Advertising by Focusing on Stopping Medications

There are plenty of examples of direct-to-consumer advertising that the pharmaceutical industry use to lure new customers. Just like the Cancer Center ads we discussed in the last GeriPal post, these ads almost universally do this by making emotional appeals to the consumer, as well as focusing on the benefits rather than presenting any real discussion of risks.

What if someone used a similar concept, but instead of trying to get people to take a drug, they try to convince patients to stop one. That’s just what Cara Tannenbaum and colleagues did in a paper published in JAMA IM, albeit they called it direct-to-consumer patient education and empowerment.

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How to really piss-off older people with bad advertising

As I was writing my post on The Rise of Aging-Friendly Stores, I came across this little gem (article below).

When working on starting up a business a few months ago, my business partner and I had a great discussion with Aging2.0 co-founder Stephen Johnston. We discussed how marketing with terms like “silver, age-friendly, 50+, and elderly” are not good to use, mostly because people want to be thought of as consumers, not an age group. As he said, “senior doesn’t sell.”

But we were running into problems with how people would find our services (consulting with businesses to make their electronic products and services more age-friendly). We wanted to use principles of Universal Design, which, in a nutshell, is designing so that all people, regardless of age or disability could use a product or service. And, while the companies may have a better understanding of how Universal Design can be applied, we still weren’t sure how to let aging adults know that we were making sure products and services were specifically for them.

Well, anyway, this article is a great addition to the conversation on marketing towards aging adults. A guide of what NOT to do!

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