Marketing 50

Band-Aid Liquid Bandage

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Liquid bandages are no longer futuristic hospital tools. And Johnson & Johnson's consumer products operation is working hard to make Band-Aid the brand king in this niche.

J&J Consumer Products Co. unveiled a groundbreaking concept in home woundcare, Band-Aid Liquid Bandage, in April 2002. Manufactured by Closure Medical Corp. and marketed under Sheri McCoy, woundcare president at the J&J unit, it was the first cyanoacrylate medical device approved by the Food & Drug Administration for the consumer market.

According to TMS Media Intelligence/CMR, J&J doled out $10.6 million in ad spending on the product during the first half of 2003 alone, 55.9% more than it spent in all of 2002. Working under Ms. McCoy, Sisy Vicente, wound care unit group products director, collaborated with Interpublic Group of Cos.' McCann-Erickson Worldwide, New York, which already handles other Band-Aid products, to create a cross-media campaign. It featured images of abrasions and the slogan "This is no place for a bandage. Or at least no bandage you've ever seen before."

With nearly every player in the category scrambling for a competing offering, it's clear liquid bandages are the growth sector for this market. According to ACNielsen, sales of liquid bandage products grew by 140.5% between May of 2002 and May of 2003, while the overall bandage segment reported only 8% total growth for the same time period.

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