COMPANY CASE for Chapter 1
Botox: Almost Trouble-Free New Faces
The Botox case illustrates the accidental success of a product developed for an entirely different purpose. Originally, Botox was used in the treatment of crossed-eyes, but ophthalmologists quickly learned that it would also erase wrinkles and frown lines around eyes. It wasn’t long before doctors across the United States were using Botox for treating wrinkles even though Allergan could not promote the product for this use.
The case discusses the advantages (fewer frown lines) and disadvantages and side effects (drooping eyelids and the need to repeat treatments) of Botox; explains what the product is; ...view middle of the document...
Allergan’s marketing efforts are two-pronged in order to successfully promote to both markets. It is important for students to realize the pivotal role of the doctor in this purchase process in which consumers do not buy the product directly.
1. To illustrate the effect of publicity on product success.
2. To raise questions about the differences between needs, wants, and demands.
3. To challenge students to define added value and how it relates to consumer satisfaction.
4. To demonstrate the importance of target market selection (not just for women!).
5. To illustrate the marketing of a pharmaceutical product and the importance of the doctor in the marketing process.
6. To illustrate consumer-oriented marketing.
7. To raise questions about the social impact of a marketing success such as Botox.
8. To illustrate the role that marketing plays in the development of company strategy.
Answers to Discussion Questions
1. What are the needs, wants, and demands of consumers for Botox products in its dif-
ferent treatment markets? What value does Botox deliver in each market? How
does value affect the price for Botox?
The use of Botox for ocular treatment illustrates a classic need. The consumer has a defect that needs treatment. When used for crossed-eyes, the product not only has strong physical properties, but social properties as well. Patients can see better, but they may also feel much better about themselves as their appearance improves. This can have a strong impact on their ego and social needs. Of course, this also illustrates wants. People with crossed eyes can still read and function. The want here is not that they will expire from lack of the drug, but that they want to look better and feel better about themselves. The value of this is undeniably high. What probably constitutes the major portion of the value are the social and ego wants. One can live without it, but does one want to? Because the value is high, the price can be high. But in this market, insurance reimbursements may operate to lower the price that consumers are willing to pay. After all, they don’t have to have the product. Although there is need, want is also high.
Botox for cosmetic purposes is quite different. This situation illustrates want. We can all live with wrinkles, but we want to be rid of them. Want drives the purchase process. Given American’s obsession with appearance, the value of improving appearance would be very high. Again this value would primarily be ego (I look better) and social (others think I’m younger). And one would pay for it. As the case indicates the cost of Botox is quite high and unlikely to be covered by insurance companies for cosmetic purposes.
The Botox example illustrates want and need are quite different and they affect value. Unfortunately many U.S. consumers place a higher value on ego and social wants than physical needs which accounts for the run-away success of...