Weight loss claims unfounded, but advertising works
Tom Dougherty, CEO – Stealing Share
8 January 2014
Sensa might be misleading, but many believe
For those of you who don’t think advertising works, consider this: Those weight loss products that are promoted during “distressed” times (meaning they run whenever stations/networks can fit them in) sell lots of product with those ads. Sensa alone sold more than $364 million worth of products over the last four years.
And here’s the catch: The products themselves don’t work.
“You’re the person who doesn’t want to miss out and believes easy is best, even if it’s against your better judgment.”
At least that’s according to the Federal Trade Commission, which has forced three manufacturers to pay $34 million in refunds to those who bought the products. The FTC demanded the refunds because the weight loss marketers are making claims that are unfounded by science.
I bring this up not to prove that advertisers can dupe anyone into buying something – or even that people can be duped. No, I bring it up because the type of advertising those weight-loss marketers do is something I’ve often thought was pretty effective.
They and their like, such as those OxiClean commercials, are demonstration-driven, much like an infomercial. Those kinds of ads are not for everybody, of course, but there’s always something compelling about them. You feel a pull that says, even when you are skeptical, “Don’t miss out! This is easy!”
That’s the brand face (who you are when you use a brand) of those kinds of spots. You’re the person who doesn’t want to miss out and believes easy is best, even if it’s against your better judgment.
As a brand guy, I don’t believe product benefits alone drive preference. Not by a long shot. But, in an era in which much advertising (especially among the big-budget brands) is without meaning, those weight-loss marketers and their like are more in tune with their target audiences than most.
They’ll even get some people to buy a product that doesn’t work.
Nextdoor Tom Dougherty, CEO - Stealing Share 11 December 2018 Use Nextdoor, get rid of Facebook About a year or so ago, I kissed Facebook goodbye. Much to my surprise, it’s making me use NextDoor more. My withdrawal from online communities probably isn’t a shocker...
Brand Purpose Tom Dougherty, CEO - Stealing Share 10 December 2018 Brand purpose is not what many think it is So, the marketing term of the year is Brand Purpose, as chosen by the Association of National Advertisers. And what do they use to demonstrate such a term...
Retail market changes Tom Dougherty, CEO - Stealing Share 6 December 2018 Retail market changes are akin to climate change Are you paying attention to the many retail market changes? I am. Some fundamental changes are afoot. I believe the days of large generalized...