Thursday, August 19, 2004

Back in June the General suggested that the sustained erection-on-demand is taking its place alongside whiter teeth and smooth transparent toenails in the pantheon of advertising banality. Perhaps that was too harsh. Pfizer has decided instead to locate the chemically-induced hard-on just below the 'sinfully rich' chocolate desserts and just above the Rogaine.
In recent months, Pfizer has watched its market share soften. It has responded with a new advertising agency and a new campaign on television and in print media.

Conceived by the advertising giant McCann Erickson Worldwide, the $100m (�55m) campaign goes under the slogan "Get back to mischief". And thatmischief is the devil's business. Hence, the horns, stylised in the form of the V of Viagra, that sprout from the heads of men who appear in the new commercials.

The first in a new series of television advertisements now airing in the US features a husband shopping with his wife, dutifully standing by as she browses the shoe shelves. Up go the horns when they switch their gaze to the lingerie section. "Remember that guy who used to be called Wild Thing?" an announcer asks. "The guy who wanted to spend the entire honeymoon indoors? Remember the one who couldn't resist a little mischief? Yeah, that guy. He's back." It ends with the sober admonition, "Ask your doctor if Viagra is right for you."

Keeping its previous buttoned-down approach became less viable once the maker of Cialis, Lilly Icos, bought premium time in the Super Bowl broadcast last February with an ad featuring a late-middle aged couple in adjoining hot-tubs touching fingers. The announcer asked, "Will you be ready?"
And not to be limited by fuddy-duddy medical criteria, the E.D. Big Three (Pfizer, GlaxoSmithKline, Eli Lilly) are expanding their market into the recreational drug use set.
Recent research has shown a huge rise in consumption of Viagra, especially among men aged from 18 to 45. While the numbers using Viagra for straightforward medical reasons has begun to slide, the research shows a 312 per cent jump in sales to men who are using the pill just for fun.
One wonders when the women in these guys' lives are going to say, "Enough! Get off me!"?


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