The most successful new launches and their accompanying ads come from products that have specific, recognized and reachable targets, especially for those consumers who have high-need problems for which solutions can be clearly outlined. The acne market was a relatively small part of the skin care business until the unknown dermatologists’ brand, Proactiv, found a non-traditional channel—TV infomercials—to present its problem/solution products in an educational context.
|This ad has it all. Neutrogena’s Rapid Clear Fight & Fade has a great name, great position and great copy!|
A Booming Market
Proactiv’s great success opened the door to the now booming acne market—no longer the sole purview of dermatologist’s offices—as traditional marketers finally latched on and brought multi-product acne programs/system solutions to a drug store near you. Johnson & Johnson was already a heavyweight in this business with Clean & Clear, when Neutrogena, with its dermatology heritage and base of oily skin products, launched its major Rapid Clear line of products not too long ago. What a great benefit name, plus a promise of instant gratification. Now, Neutrogena has added Rapid Clear Fight & Fade, to create a new positioning segment, “fading of acne marks/scars” and has named the category to boot! Bravo Neutrogena! These audits present the second highest scores (published or private audits) that we’ve ever recorded for both theBrandAudit and theAdAudit. Caveat. A great ad/claim that is not perceived by the consumer, is the worst thing a brand can do, (see heBrandAudit report on Kinerase in the October 2008 issue. For a complete list of more than 50 published scores, just drop me a line at email@example.com.) While one can learn from the mistakes of others, it’s even better to discover what works—there are examples galore in both of these Fight & Fade audits.
A Winning Ad
First, let’s look at theBrandAudit scores whose high numbers are due to the new added-benefit segment—fading acne marks. Neutrogena uncovered a previously ignored/ undiscovered consumer need, and created a new sub-category and ultimate end benefit—and named it, 2-in-1 Fight & Fade. And, the name is clearly defined on the package. The ad, while it lost a few points for being a bit busy/screaming, is virtually perfect in every other way, with a 94.41 score, (did you notice that the word “Fade” actually fades?). Headline is a stopper with a clear benefit. Then, there’s both real and psychological targeting with the (consumer) quote, “I don’t know what’s worse, embarrassing breakouts or the marks they leave behind.” Add a demo, plus visual support for permission-to-believe the fight and fade news/claim. Note that the before and after photo has a disclaimer, “dramatization of typical results,” but the consumer will perceive it to be “her” benefit. The sign-off is—“The one and only 2-in-one of its kind!” This ad is a case study for anyone interested in creating powerful ads. It is powerful for its communication values, and not because it is so strong in its presentation. The lesson here is: dig/dig/dig for the final/ final/final end benefit, real and/or imagined for success in positioning.