Friday, October 12, 2007

Ads without products or promises - just pictures!

Have you ever seen those ads on TV that feature middle aged men skipping down the street like they just won the lottery?
Or the ones showing middle-aged women confiding in each other in incomprehensible languages?
Or how about the campaign in which older guys from all over the world are shown in their showers, singing at the tops of their lungs?

Do you remember what product the commercials were selling?

All three were promoting a prescription drug for adults. But Canada has laws that discourage drug companies from advertising drugs directly to consumers. So these ads aren't permitted to make any claims about the benefits of the drugs. They can't promise to cure any medical or health problems. They can't use language to convince people they're effective. Instead, they use images and sounds to engage and pique curiosity. And then they flash up the name of the drug, and say "Ask your doctor."

The practice has become really controversial. In my next posting, I'll tell you why!

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