Tech Industry

Direct-To- Consumer Advertising Works

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Executive Summary

Pharmaceutical marketers, like their counterparts in other industries, are under constant pressure to justify their sales and marketing budgets. But in the United States, pharmacy marketers must also beat back accusations that advertising for their products is ineffective. For example, a recent (September 2008) study by Harvard researchers, which suggested that Direct-To-Consumer (DTC) ads do not improve drug sales, generated a great deal of coverage and controversy. The research used French Canadians as a control group, compared them to English-speaking Canadians who were exposed to some American DTC spillover, and concluded, based on retail prescription data for three drugs that DTC advertising may not work.

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