Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Marketing Medicine for Maniacs

It takes a special type of person to not only read the enclosed instructions in any form of medication but to actually understand it. No doubt hypochondriacs stand to gain the most out of these detailed instructions as they spell out all the symptoms associated with the ailment. It conjures up an image of a person memorising symptoms to use the next time he sees a doctor.

But to get back to the medication; you first buy it, then read the instructions and realise, yup; this is definitely what I’m suffering from, so I need this treatment. It’s a good thing I bought it.

That however, is not the issue I want to address. My problem is that even something serious as medication falls prey to advertising jargon that just confuses the consumer.

Let’s take the Nicotinell I’m currently using in my effort to stop smoking as an example. A listed side effect is mild diarrhoea.

What is a mild diarrhoea and how did they ascertain that?

Was a survey conducted and they then just used the opinions of blatant liars that complete questionnaires for remuneration? It is definitely not a trustworthy way of doing things.

Did they conduct a clinical trial? I can just picture people in white coats poking around in stool monsters going oh and ah and then making notes on a clipboard.

Or do they grade the level of diarrhoea as they do with a curry or chutney? "Hey Hank, try this one! Definitely a mild one as it lacks all flavour." The image that conjures up will not be discussed further.

Why do they not use simple language all can understand?

I would have appreciated the following line:

“Warning: When using this medication, do not trust the art of a fart. You might get more than you bargained for.”

It would have saved on one load of underwear washing.


Mark said...

Hi Gerrie, I see that you are still pretty adept at so called shit-speak. The comical colonel! Where were you when I was in the army! I needed a serious laugh not that I didn't. Mostly directed at some injustice inflicted (actually mostly justified)inept NCO boertjie. Keep it coming!

Gerrie Hugo said...

Lo Mark,
Yup that is what I do.
You must leave me an e-mail addy so that I can touch base.

Mark said...
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