Pharmacia's Rogaine tries linkup with Paul Mitchell

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The newest market for Pharmacia & Upjohn's struggling Rogaine hair-loss remedy is women in their 20s and 30s.

Trying to draw females into the franchise before they begin losing their hair, the marketer again is teaming with haircare specialist John Paul Mitchell Systems.

This follows the January launch of Paul Mitchell Rogaine Professional Extra Strength for Men

Paul Mitchell Rogaine Professional for Women, coming in June, is aimed at style-conscious young women who are willing to try to stop the problem before it starts.

"We are positioning this product for a more pro-active, younger target audience that is more interested in taking control over their looks," said Elayne McClaine, senior business manager at Pharmacia & Upjohn.

"Having the Rogaine brand name on a Paul Mitchell product brings legitimacy," said Brenda DuVal, exec VP of John Paul Mitchell Systems.

Pharmacia & Upjohn has lost momentum on its hair-loss brand to Merck & Co.'s Propecia, an oral treatment introduced in 1998.

Figures from IMS Health show prescription Propecia's sales at $66.6 million in 1998. Rogaine, on the market since 1988 and available over the counter since 1996, had sales of $104 million in '98, up 21% according to Information Resources Inc.

The new products will be made available for sale at the estimated 90,000 salons where Paul Mitchell products are available.


The two marketers will unveil a national TV, print and radio campaign promoting both the male- and female-targeted products a few weeks after the introduction of the women's line. Jordan McGrath Case & Partners/Euro RSCG, New York, is the agency.

The print ads are expected to use the "Think ahead" tagline the company has used in trade advertising; TV spots are planned to resemble current Paul Mitchell commercials, with company CEO John Paul DeJoria as the spokesman.

Spending was not available. Pharmacia & Upjohn invested $44 million in advertising Rogaine last year, according to Competitive Media Reporting. John Paul Mitchell spent $10 million on all its products.


For Pharmacia & Upjohn, the marketing venture provides an entree into the salon market, where customers tend to spend freely on haircare products.

"The kind of consumers within [Paul Mitchell's] franchise are people who spend time, energy and money in salons on a regular basis and are prone to address the thinning crisis they may be experiencing in terms of trying to identify the first signs of hair loss," Ms. McClaine said.

Salon customers also tend to follow the advice of their stylists, and the marketers have launched an aggressive effort to try and reach haircare professionals.

The Paul Mitchell Rogaine products are marketed as part of a "complete treatment kit" that also includes a Paul Mitchell shampoo and conditioner.

Copyright April 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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