Retailers, consumers seeing purple
Customers are seeing purple again — reminiscent of another switch that took advantage of the eye-catching color purple. Sanofi-Aventis through its Chattem division in March launched Allegra, the last of the second-generation antihistamines. And purple-powered displays, like this in a Walmart in Lancaster, Pa., dotted the retail pharmacy landscape.
“We will make very, very massive investments in terms of advertising and promotion, and we are in fact very confident and even optimistic that in a very, very short [time] we will reach sales levels [as high as] the two leading products in this field,” boasted Hanspeter Spek, president of global operations for Sanofi-Aventis, a few weeks before the actual launch.
Though Allegra is not expected to reach the sales heights of $200 million-plus like its two second-generation antihistamine predecessors, Claritin and Zyrtec, an incremental $100 million-plus to OTC allergy sales is not out of the question.
Walmart gets back in on the action
Action Alley — branded feature displays and four-sided fixtures in the main aisles — marked its return to all Walmart stores this past holiday season, and signified Walmart’s return to promotional intensity.
“Action Alley is a characteristic communication to our customers,” said Bill Simon, Walmart U.S. president and CEO, last year. “It’s how we talk to them. Other competitors have other things — discount cards, loyalty cards, double coupons. For us, Action Alley is an important piece of who we are because it tells the customer what we believe is important, and it adds that element of excitement that says that this is a Walmart store.”
Action Alley proved to be a significant factor in Walmart’s increase of 8.2% in inventory for its fiscal year ended Jan. 28. Coupled with a similar return to increased assortments, these two initiatives contributed approximately 120 basis points of the total growth for the year, Simon told investors in February.
Walgreens leads the way to ‘well’
Walgreens not only is the “Way to Well,” it also is the “Way to Stay Well,” as evidenced by this shelf talker in the dietary supplement aisle that contains a 44-page pamphlet titled “Vitamins & Supplements Q&A: Your A to Z Shopping Guide.”
Inside are reasons to take supplements to both improve health and prevent disease. Specific supplement topics include the best supplements to take to help manage healthy blood-glucose levels, as well as bone and joint, cognitive, heart, immune and prenatal health.
And Walgreens is targeting more than the baby boomer, who is projected to drive sales of supplements through the next decade — most of the images inside the pamphlet represent younger families.
In addition to the three-plus pages of branded coupons, one of the last pages of the pamphlet contains the list of medical journal references that support the supplement benefits made earlier in the guide.