Pharmaceutical industry: the use of social marketing and direct-to-consumer advertising in sales promotion



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Texas Tech University


The goal of this research project was to examine how consumer opinions about pharmaceutical advertising and the effects of specific advertising elements such as name, indication, contact information, etc., in a pnnt advertisement relate to consumer recall of the advertisement. The theoretical and conceptual components reviewed for the purposes of this project are the Health Belief, and Expanded Health Belief Models, salience, social marketing, source credibility, integrated marketing communication (IMC), and direct-to-consumer (DTC) advertising. By applying these components to pharmaceutical advertising, a clearer understanding of the issues facing both the pharmaceutical industry and the consumer were achieved.

For the purposes of this project, the two research questions were: (1) What message format leads to the highest level of recall on the part of the consumer in relation to the advertising of pharmaceuticals? and (2) What individual factors affect consumer recall of pharmaceutical advertisements? This experiment was conducted as a 2x2 factorial, post-test only design, and utilized a student sample. All participants viewed stimulus materials which were distributed in a staged manipulation, and were created and/or compiled by the author.