One of the biggest challenges Mucinex faces is association primarily with chest congestion rather than with cold and flu symptoms. Additionally, our proprietary CCS research showed that 68% of consumers are “new” each season and don’t buy products until they’re already within days 1-4 of their consumer illness journey. As such, the category is completely driven by incidences of illness, and if we miss them at that early point, we’ve most likely lost them for the whole flu season.
We identified three groups of consumers within the cold and flu category:
Avoiders - ignore the fact they are sick
Wait and Seers - nearly on their deathbed before doing
anything about being sick Doers - take charge when they’re sick
We chose Doers as the target. Doers actively seek out solutions that will get them back to their busy lives as quickly as possible. CCS highlighted that the sickness journey for the Doer starts at WebMD.com, the largest health site in the US. When symptoms arise, Doers research ‘throat, chest, nose’ and similar terms on WebMD’s symptom checker, looking for solutions to knock their symptoms out.
We partnered with WebMD to develop data-driven marketing based on real time incidences of cold/flu across the USA. Our strategy was to ramp up receptivity to cold and u messaging through the use of data. This enabled us to stay top of mind by targeting Doers with the right Mucinex message, at the moment they needed it. In partnership with WebMD, our analysts used first-party WebMD Symptom Checker data to develop a cold and flu algorithm to predict when different strains of cold and flu were about to hit geographical regions across the USA with greater accuracy than Google Flu Trends. We didn’t have the digital budgets to cover the entire nation throughout the season, so a local, real-time approach was employed. We used the data from the algorithm to show digital banner ads across the web, with dynamically targeted locally relevant creative, only in the geographies about to be hit with cold and flu strains. Through continual optimization and refinement, we made Mucinex appear the biggest brand in exactly the right places, at exactly the moments when it counted most. This campaign was fluid and multi-screen, and made full use of any device the consumer used in a particular moment.