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BizReport : Advertising : November 28, 2006

Merck Moving More Ads Online

Drug company Merck has a new plan for advertising – they will shift ads for new drugs from broadcast television onto online communities and cable networks. This in an effort to better market pharmaceuticals to new customers.

by Kristina Knight

merck-logo.jpgRather than placing ads on various television channels, Merck will begin by placing targeted ads on specific websites like iVillage, a targeted women’s community, and other such online communities. The company feels that by better targeting ads and communities they will have a better ROI than simply scattering ads across television screens.

"The new model will also move away from a broad broadcast DTC approach in its classical sense. It has to. Because as a consumer we're sitting in front of our TV, and we're switching all the time," Peter Loescher, Merck's new second in command, who is leading this drive, told the Financial Times (via MarketingVOX).

According to the Financial Times, “The pharmaceutical industry, including Merck, represents five of the top 25 advertisers in the US. Broadcast television is crowded with drug advertising, while internet drug marketing continues to grow in scope and sophistication.”

"We tried to target specific populations – [to] be far more targeted and far more diverse," said Loescher (via MSNBC).

Tags: Merck, online advertising, online spending

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